Be a part of Gisborne's future

Consultation closed at 5pm on Monday 14 September 2020


The Gisborne Futures project includes:

  • A long term Structure Plan that guides future township growth, including housing, transport, shops, parks, landscapes and infrastructure.
  • An Urban Design Framework that will shape the streets and buildings in the town centre, and
  • A Neighbourhood Character Study that will guide new housing development and protect the semi-rural “feel” of the area. 

For the next 30 years these important documents will help shape the future look and feel of Gisborne, guide sustainable growth and development of the township and protect the surrounding landscape. 

We have incorporated what you told us so far about how you want to live, work, play and get around in the Gisborne area. Now it is your turn to let us know if we have got the balance right.

Look over the proposed draft plans and let us know what you think.

About the project

The Gisborne Futures project is a sustainable vision for how Gisborne will grow and develop into the future. We’re looking at where you shop and where you live, how you use parks and open space, transport options, what community facilities and infrastructure might be required, how waterways are managed and what your needs might be for all these things into the future.

The Gisborne Futures project presents:

  • A sustainable vision for Gisborne and direction for the town that is consistent with state and local policy directions.
  • A framework to manage urban development and growth opportunities and provide sustainable outcomes including social, community and physical infrastructure for existing and future residents.
  • A township boundary that protects the environmental and rural qualities of the landscape surrounding Gisborne, while providing sufficient land to accommodate growth for the next 30 years.
  • Design directions for landscape, built form and public spaces that maintain and enhance Gisborne’s village town character.
  • Neighbourhood character direction so that new development respects the distinctive semi-rural “feel” of the area.

Why are we doing this?

In recent years population growth has exceeded the level anticipated in the Gisborne/New Gisborne Outline Development Plan (ODP) from 2009, and the introduction of protected settlement boundaries through the Statement of Planning Policy has initiated the need to review the township plan.

Long-term township planning is a responsibility of Council to its community and the Victorian Government. 

We are reviewing the township plan now as:

  • Population growth in recent years has exceeded expected levels in the Gisborne/New Gisborne Outline Development Plan (ODP) from 2009
  • The Statement of Planning Policy has introduced protected settlement boundaries. 

We plan now so residential and commercial growth is innovative, sustainable and able to provide positive outcomes for the Gisborne township and community, and to make sure developers contribute financially to fund community and infrastructure upgrades in line with the rate of population growth.

The Gisborne Futures project will set a protected urban settlement boundary for Gisborne and identify future land uses for retail, employment, housing, and community services to meet the growing needs of the town.

The project also aims to improve and manage vehicle, cycle and pedestrian traffic, enable economic development, provide for open space linkages and to protect important views, landscape features and the valued qualities of existing residential areas. 

What you've told us so far

The draft Gisborne Futures plans are based on feedback received during extensive community consultation including the ‘Issues and Opportunities’ and ‘Emerging Ideas’ phases in 2018 and 2019, and also includes feedback received through the Gisborne Business Park (2019) and the Neighbourhood Character Study consultations led by Metropolis Research in 2017.

Community values reinforced and highlighted in previous consultation stages of Gisborne Futures were gathered.

Key themes highlighted in these earlier consultation findings included:

  • The valued semi-rural / country town character.
  • Views and landscapes around the town are defining elements of Gisborne.
  • A desire to see improvements in local roads and movement around town, including cycle and pedestrian mobility.
  • Protection of history and heritage.
  • Growth should not be to the detriment of the town’s character.
  • Better management of through traffic, especially trucks.
  • Economic development should support local business and increase employment opportunities.
  • Better community facilities are needed, especially for youths and schools.
  • Housing diversity and affordability.

Principles outlined in the Emerging Ideas consultation booklet of May 2019 included:

  1. Image and Character
  2. Role and Economy
  3. Housing and Neighbourhood Character
  4. Environment and Landscape
  5. Movement and Access
  6. Town Centre and Public Spaces
  7. Community Infrastructure

View the Emerging Ideas(PDF, 12MB) collated for that consultation from May-June 2019.

These emerging ideas were presented alongside a summary of the background and technical research and what residents told us during past consultation.

The emerging ideas presented during this consultation stage were used as a framework to develop strategies and actions for the Structure Plan and Urban Design Framework.

View submissions received to date


Community feedback on the draft Gisborne Futures plans is helping Council to refine its vision for better managing future growth in Gisborne.

Community engagement activities as part of Gisborne Futures Phase 3 Consultation in
July-September 2020 resulted in 647 survey responses and 208 submissions received to date, as at November 2020.

Three key reports were released together in late July 2020 - a draft Structure Plan, draft Urban Design Framework and draft Neighbourhood Character Study – sharing a vision for sustainable growth for the township.

The draft plans incorporate previous community feedback as well as Council’s obligations to the Victorian Government to set a protected settlement boundary.

Council asked if issues raised in previous consultations in recent years fairly reflected the community’s priorities for the future and if the balance is right in these draft plans.


 Redacted versions of these written submissions are now available for public viewing, with all personal and identifiable details removed to meet privacy requirements.

All submissions and online survey responses are being reviewed by Council’s strategic planners. A report will be tabled at a Scheduled Council Meeting in 2021 outlining the submissions received and key themes from the consultation.

Given it will take considerable time for officers to respond in detail, it has been determined that all written submissions should be made public now.

Council is committed to considering further community feedback. Officers will continue to accept feedback from interested members of the public on the Gisborne Futures project via email

Download the redacted submissions(PDF, 300MB)

Next steps

A summary response and options paper outlining issues and themes raised in these submissions will be reported to Council early in 2021. 

Newly elected Councillors are keen to clarify how the community’s feedback is aligned to plans for Gisborne’s future. To assist this process, the Councillor Project Group have started meeting at least monthly, beginning from 15 December 2020.

Council appreciates the ongoing interest and support of our community in helping it work through the complex social, planning, environmental and community issues involved.


We are still some way from the finish line with the Gisborne Futures project yet Council continues to take important steps forward to provide positive outcomes for our community.
Council would like to thank all in the community for providing feedback on Gisborne Futures draft plans. For updates, visit Gisborne


Where are we now?

During 2019 and early 2020, Council’s draft Gisborne Futures Structure Plan, Urban Design Framework and Neighbourhood Character Study have been developed based on expert advice, best practice planning and urban design principles and community feedback gathered through these previous phases of consultation.

Building on previous consultations, the project aims to improve and manage vehicle, cycle and pedestrian traffic, enable economic development and future employment opportunities, provide for open space linkages and to protect important views and landscape features.

To strengthen integrated planning outcomes, Council included further work on the Gisborne Business Park expansion area into Gisborne Futures in December 2019. Council is also considering the Gisborne Business Park and as part of the implementation of Gisborne Futures project.

At the Ordinary Council Meeting of 24 June 2020, Council endorsed the draft Gisborne Structure Plan, draft Gisborne Urban Design Framework and draft Gisborne Neighbourhood Character Study for community consultation.

Land located east of the township at 284 Kilmore Road, Gisborne, known as Glen Junor, is now included within the proposed settlement boundary of the draft Gisborne Structure Plan.

For community consultation purposes, the opportunity to establish more shops and services east of the existing town boundary has been identified on this land in the draft Gisborne Structure Plan.

Search your address to see if there are any changes proposed in your neighbourhood.

Like many other of Council’s core responsibilities, long-term township planning must continue and despite Council's recent office closures due to COVID-19, there were a number of other ways to get involved during this consultation period, including:

  • one-on-one online or phone discussions with the planning team
  • a series of public webinars
  • targeted webinars and virtual meetings were held with community agencies and developers by arrangement
  • completing our online survey
  • making a written submission online or via post.