The Kiama Urban Strategy (KUS) was endorsed by Council on 20 September 2011, and provides the strategic planning direction for both residential and future employment development in the Municipality for the next ten to fifteen years.
The process to formulate the KUS began as part of Council resolving to prepare a new Kiama Local Environmental Plan 2011 The KUS considers both urban infill and urban expansion opportunities and makes recommendations as to an appropriate approach for the Kiama Local Government Area. The KUS reflects the required housing mix contained within the Department of Planning and Environment's Illawarra Regional Strategy (now superseded by the Illawarra-Shoalhaven Regional Plan).
The KUS was formulated following a community engagement process, the preparation of strategic studies, prepared by specialist consultants and a detailed population and housing study. A community panel was commissioned by Council to provided advice on the following key issues:
- How might the LEP protect the agricultural and scenic landscape, and also support a diverse, changing and viable economy and community?
- How should the town centres and surrounding residential neighbourhoods be developed to create vibrant town centres with increase business and employment opportunities, and living areas that have high amenity, accessibility and a sense of place that reflects the coastal charm and character of the place?
- What level of population growth is appropriate for Kiama over the next ten years and how can it be housed?
- What are the appropriate LEP mechanisms to protect ecologically important natural systems and biodiversity in the Kiama Municipality and what opportunities exist to enhance degraded systems through the LEP process?
The draft KUS was placed on exhibition from the 17 November 2010 to 7 February 2011, with Council receiving a total of 804 submissions. Council considered a report on the draft KUS and the submissions received at an Extraordinary Meeting held on 5 April 2011 where it resolved to defer adoption pending further discussions with the Department of Planning and Environment and specific landowners. The KUS was formally adopted by Council on 20 September 2011 and identifies land suitable for residential infill, urban expansion and future employment opportunities.
The KUS provides strategic guidance when preparing certain Planning Proposals within the Municipality.