Table to hold the design
Contact Us

Planning Services

All healthy and vibrant communities require a mix of areas for living, working and recreation and to this end, the Shire of Irwin’s Planning Services division:

  • Controls where and what type of building or development takes place
  • Regulates the use of land throughout the Shire. 
  • Ensures that all new subdivisions are designed to incorporate integration of all the relevant facilities.

These controls all help to ensure that a pleasant living and working environment is maintained for the Community as a whole.

The Shire of Irwin’s Planning Services division undertake strategic planning to manage and coordinate the future development of the Shire of Irwin. These include the review of the Local Planning Scheme, structure planning for future growth areas of the Shire, rural strategies and policy development.

Currently Advertised Planning Applications/Proposals

There are no Planning Applications currently being advertised.

Local Planning Strategy

The Shire of Irwin’s Draft Local Planning Strategy has been adopted by Council and is currently being considered for final approval by the Western Australian Planning Commission. The draft strategy’s Part 1 and Part 2 Reports can be viewed by clicking on the links in blue.

Planning Guidance

Bushfire Prone Areas Guidance Note

New reforms have been introduced to provide new requirements for developing or building Habitable Buildings in bushfire prone areas. For Development Applications, these reforms are currently effective. To find out how this impacts on Habitable Buildings, click here for the Bushfire Guidance Notes.

If you would like to know what plants can help protect houses from potential bushfires, this guide witll assist you to choose plants and position them at the appropriate distances from buildings:

Plant Guide within the Building Protection Zone

Guidance Notes for Residential Development by Zone

The Residential Zone Guidance Note can be viewed here.

The Special Residential Zone Guidance Note can be viewed here.

The Rural Residential Zone Guidance Note can be viewed here.

The Rural Smallholdings Zone Guidance Note can be viewed here.

The General Farming Zone Guidance Note can be viewed here.

Floodplain Developement Control Area Guidance Note

The Floodplain Developmment Control Area Guidance Note can be viewed here.

Development Approval:

All land within the Shire of Irwin falls under the control of the Shire’s Local Planning Scheme No 5. Therefore if you are intending to use a property for a particular purpose or intend to build on a property you first need to obtain development approval from the Shire. This applies to both urban and rural land.

It is recommended as best practice to contact the Shire’s Planning Services division in the early stages of planning for your development to ascertain how the Shire’s requirements may apply to your proposal. The Planning Services division are more than willing to assist with any enquiries you may have in this regard.

Planning decisions are made by the Shire based on the Shire of Irwin’s Local Planning Scheme No. 5 and can often involve consultation with the community, Council and relevant State Government departments. If develpoment approval is granted, it is usually subject to a range of conditions, which must be met before the issue of the building licence, prior to the occupation of the completed development or before commencement of use. For a development application form and the applicable fees and charges please contact the Shire's Planning Services Department or click on the link below;

Fees & Charges 2016/2017

Application form for Development Approval

Subdivision Applications:

Subdivision is controlled by the Western Australian Planning Commission rather than the Shire, however, local planning considerations still play a role and the Shire can provide advice in this regard. Information and application forms for subdivision approvals can be obtained from

Development Assessment Panel Applications:

The legislation requires that all development applications above a certain financial threshold be determined by a DAP, with the opportunity for proponents of developments below the threshold to opt in. Assessment by a DAP is compulsory for developments valued at over $7 million. The "opt-in" threshold is $3 million. The DAPs will consist of an independent chairman, two local council representatives, and three members with expertise in fields to be prescribed.

Information and application forms for Development Assessment Panel applications can be obtained from

Local Planning Scheme No. 5:

The Shire of Irwin is covered by one Planning Scheme that stipulates the land use zoning and development controls. The Shire of Irwin Local Planning Scheme No. 5 was Gazetted (i.e. legally approved) on 7 May 2008.

The Scheme comprises:

a)    The Scheme text;

b)    The Scheme maps (sheets 1 to 17)     
Scheme Legend
Map 1 (Bookara Locality)
Map 2 (Mount Horner Locality)
Map 3 (Dongara and Port Denison Townsite Surrounds)
Map 4 (Irwin Townsite Surrounds)
Map 5 (Arrowsmith Locality North West)
Map 6 (Arrowsmith Locality North East)
Map 7 (Arrowsmith Locality South West)
Map 8 (Arrowsmith Locality South East)
Map 9 (Dongara Townsite Locality North)
Map 10 (Bonniefiled Locality)
Map 11 (Dongara and Port Denison Townsite)
Map 12 (Dongara and Port Denison Locality East)
Map 13 (Yardarino Locality North)
Map 14 (Port Denison Townsite)
Map 15 (Port Denison Locality East)
Map 16 (Yardarino Locality South)
Map 17 (Irwin Townsite)
Map Index

The Scheme is to be read in conjunction with the Local Planning Strategy. The Strategy acts as a guide for the progressive development of the local authority over the next 10 to 15 years. It sets out the long-term planning directions for the local government, applies State and regional planning policies and provides the rationale for the zones and other provisions of the Local Planning Scheme. The Shire’s Local Planning Strategy is soundly based on the identification of Policy Areas of which:

  • Policy Areas B and F embrace the Dongara/Port Denison Urban Area and;
  • Policy Areas A, C, D, E and G embrace the balance rural hinterland area of the Shire.

Amending the Planning Scheme:

If a use is not allowed under the Planning Scheme, Council may agree to amend it to allow for different uses. A number of factors need to be taken into account when an Amendment to a Planning Scheme is proposed. Generally, Council must be satisfied that:

  • an explanatory report clearly defining what is proposed is prepared; and
  • affects on the environment are considered and that social and economic effects have been addressed.

All Planning Scheme Amendments will have an accompanying fee that will need to be paid before the matter is determined. Please click here for an application form and details of related charges.

Local Planning Polices:

The Shire has adopted several Local Planning Policies under the Planning Scheme which guide decision making in the determination of applications made pursuant to the Scheme.

The following Local Planning Policies have been finalised;

-            Local Planning Policy - Advertising Signs

-            Local Planning Policy - Wind Turbines

-            Local Planning Policy - Water Sensitive Urban Design

-            Local Planning Policy - Extractive Industries

-            Local Planning Policy - Developer Contributions for Upgrades to Roads and Footpaths

Local Development Plan

The Shire has adopted a Local Development Plan for the Dongara Tourist Park, 8 George Street, Port Denison. The Local Development Plan will guide the future development of the Dongara Tourist Park. The Local Development Plan includes:

  • The Local Development Plan, which can be accessed by clicking here,
  • The Local Development Plan Map, which can be accessed by clicking here,
  • A Bushfire Management Plan, which can be accessed by clicking here,
  • A Drainage Plan, which can be accessed by clicking here, and
  • A Stormwater Management Plan, which can be accessed by clicking here.

District Structure Plan

The Dongara-Port Denison District Structure Plan and the District Water Management Strategy will guide land use and development over the next 10-20 years. To view this document click here.

Irwin River Estuary Management Plan (2014)

The Irwin River Estuary Management Plan (2014) was recently adopted at the Ordinary Council Meeting on 25 November 2014 and is available by clicking here.

Please contact Ms Suzette van Aswegen, the Shire’s Director Planning and Infrastructure for any enquiries relating to this project on 9927 0000.  

Dongara Town Centre Precinct Plan

The Precinct Plan splits Dongara Town Centre into different areas and provides planning provisions and guidelines to guide land use and development in the various precincts.

Click here to access the Dongara Town Centre Precinct Plan

Important Planning Policies and Documents:

The new Residential Design Codes (State Planning Policy 3.1) is available at the WA Planning  Commission's website


Coastal Planning Documents:

Coastal Hazard Risk Management and Adaptation Plan (CHRMAP)


The purpose of the Coastal Hazard Risk Management and Adaptation Plan (CHRMAP) is to provide strategic guidance on coordinated, integrated and sustainable management and adaptation for land use and development in the coastal zone. Specifically this CHRMAP:


  • provides information on the effects of coastal hazards;
  • presents a decision-making framework to assess the associated risks;
  • highlights coastal hazard areas in terms of vulnerability and risk; and
  • suggests possible adaptation options.

Click here to view the CHRMAP

The Shire also uses a number opf other informing strategies and documents, to view please click on the relevant link below:


Coastal Development Strategy 2000

Irwin Flood Study 1987 Part 1  Part 2

Irwin River Estuary Coastal Management


Other Important documents are available by clicking the links below;

-          Liveable Neighbourhoods (Operational Policy)

-          Adjoining Landowners Consultation Form

-          Public Open Space Strategy - Shire of irwin

-         Guidelines for Building - Moreton Bay Estate

Green Infrastructure Strategy

Green Infrastructure describes the network of green spaces and water systems that deliver multiple environmental, economic and social values and benefits. Over the next five years the strategy will lead to an improved integrated network of multifunctional green spaces and corridors underpinned by easily maintained, economically and environmentally sustainable engineering solutions. The strategy will ensure that the Shire leads by example by reducing water and energy consumption, and by implementing efficient and innovative systems, projects and initiatives. In doing so, we can encourage our community and businesses to reduce water and energy consumption.

Green Infrastructure Strategy

Coastal Planning Project

On 23 April 2015, the Shire of Irwin and the Northern Agricultural Catchments Council (NACC) hosted a Coastal Adaptation Information Forum in Port Denison. This forum brought together members of the community and representatives from the Department of Planning (DoP), Curtin University, NACC and the Shire to discuss the Shire’s new coastal planning project – the Coastal Hazard Risk Management and Adaptation Plan (CHRMAP). The Shire is leading the project with partners from the DoP, Curtin and NACC. Around twenty community members and stakeholders attended the workshop and witnessed three presentations before taking part in a question and answer session and informal discussion. The workshop discussed topics such as coastal assets, hazards, processes, coastal data, planning, protection infrastructure, communication, and partnerships. Curtin’s Literature Review for the project and a summary report from the forum can be viewed by clicking on the linksbelow;

Literature Review for the Coastal Hazard Risk Management and Adaptation Plan

Coastal Adaptation Forum - Summary Report

The Shire is also still seeking additional photographs and stories to add to the attached Draft Flooding Study. We are particularly interested to know of any photo’s, stories or documents you may be able to share with us to help complete the study. Click Here to view the Draft Flooding Study Document.

For more information about this project please contact Doug Fotheringham, Manager Regulatory Services on 9927 0000 or email


  • Shire Workplace Closure

    March 2017

    Shire Workplace Closure 5 April 2017 more >

  • Request for Tender - Tennis Court Resurfacing

    March 2017

    more >

  • Retro Festival 8 April 2017

    March 2017

    more >

Shire Office PMB 21, 11-13 Waldeck Street Dongara WA 6525 | t 9927 0000 | f 9927 1453 | e |

Privacy Policy | Disclaimer | Accessibility Notice | © Shire Of Irwin

Western Australian Local Government Association
Market Creations - Marketing, Website Design, Graphic Design