Unley Central DPA

The Unley Central Precinct is the heart of our City. We want to create a smart city that is highly accessible and inclusive. A city that promotes innovation, health and wellbeing and provides opportunities for connection, inclusion and participation.

The City of Unley has prepared a Development Plan Amendment (DPA) pursuant to sections 24 and 25 of the Development Act 1993 to amend the Unley (City) Development Plan. 

For further information view:


What is the Unley Central Precinct Plan

The City of Unley and the State Government hold the long-term goal of revitalising the heart of Unley by generating new activity, more sustainable retail, and increased residential living opportunities in the Unley Central area. To aid in visioning what the nature of this rejuvenation might entail, the City of Unley commissioned the preparation of the Unley Central Precinct Plan(PDF, 7MB) . The goals and visions set out in the Precinct Plan cannot be actioned without first amending the Council’s Development Plan for the area.

What is the Unley Central DPA?

The Development Plan is a plan required under the State Government’s Development Act to help guide new development.
Council needs to ensure that its Development Plan delivers what is needed for the future growth and prosperity of the City, while recognising its unique character.
To achieve the goals of the Unley Central Precinct Plan, Council will need to amend its current Development Plan.
The Development Plan Amendment (DPA) will encourage residential development and set a height limit for the area while providing for progressive reductions in height at the perimeter of the zone. Currently the Unley District Centre Zone has no specific building height limits or envelopes (increasing setbacks for increasing height).
As part of the process, the suburbs of the Unley Council area which are most important from a Conservation and Streetscape perspective will be given enhanced protection.

What is the position of the State Government?

The Development Plan is required to align with the State Planning Strategy (The 30-Year Plan for Greater Adelaide) and the South Australian Planning Policy Library template zone modules pursuant to the Development Act. 

To undertake a Development Plan Amendment the Minister has ultimate control in regard to allowing it to proceed and what is finally approved.  This is established via a Statement of Intent that is agreed to at the start of the process.

One of the objectives set by the State Government for the District Centre Zone is high density development.  It is the central heart of Unley and the core activity centre on Unley Road.  The surrounding Urban Corridor Zone template policy generally calls for 6 storey development up to 10 storey.  In 2013 the City of Unley negotiated an outcome of 5 storey for Unley Road and 7 storey for Greenhill Road.

How has Council consulted with the community?

Community consultation on the future for Unley Central and the 2014 Precinct Plan took place in November to December 2015. During this process, Council received valuable and constructive feedback on subjects such as:

  • land use;

  • building height;

  • transport and parking;

  • amenity; and

  • the environment.


A further hands on stakeholder workshop (called a Design Lab), with residents, owners and local groups, was held in April 2016 to explore potential options for the Precinct.
This feedback was considered by the City Strategy and Development Policy (CSDP) Committee and by the City of Unley Council through a series of meetings from February 2016 until the draft DPA was endorsed in August 2016.

A formal statutory consultation on the DPA was conducted from September to in November 2016 and further personal submissions received at a Public Meeting on Tuesday 6 December at the Unley Civic Centre.

After comprehensive consideration a Summary of Consultation and Proposed Amendments Report with options for change to key elements was presented to the CSDP Committee on Tuesday 14 March where they voted on the recommendations to be presented to Council. Further Deputations were received at the scheduled Council meeting on the 27 March 2017.  Given the significance and complexity of the matter debate was deferred to a special Council meeting on the 30 March 2017 where the revised policy and building heights were adopted. 
An appropriately revised version of the DPA was submitted to the Minister for Planning on 6 April 2017.  The DPA was approved by the Minister on the 4 July 2017 and now forms part of the Unley (City) Development Plan.

Where are we up to in the process?

Final approval on the Unley Central DPA was given by the Minister of Planning on 4 July 2017. See below a copy of the final (amended) DPA which was submitted to the Planning Minister.

Letter to Minister for planning(PDF, 100KB)

Draft Under Central Precinct DPA(PDF, 4MB)

Unley Central Precinct DPA - SCPA Report(PDF, 4MB)

What has Council endorsed for submission to the Minister?

The below table provides a summary of what is included in the final DPA that was submitted to the Minister. Final approval was given by the Minister of Planning on 4 July 2017.

District Centre Zone Existing Policy Original DPA Proposal Amended DPA
West of Unley Road precinct north of Arthur Street. No height limit 39.5 metres (11 storey) 32.5 metres (9 storey)
West of Unley Road south of Arthur Street. No height limit 39.5 metres (11 storey) 25.5 metres (7 storey)
West of Unley Road adjacent to Thomas Street west of Memorial Gardens. 2 storey to frontage and no height limit within District Centre Zone 39.5 metres (11 storey) 18.5 metres (5 storey).
Memorial Gardens recognised and building setbacks specified.
East of Unley Road north of Oxford Terrace. No height limit 18.5 metres (5 storey) 18.5 metres (5 storey)
East of Unley Road Community Area encompassing Oxford Terrace and Civic Centre. Existing residential scale.
No recognition of Village Green.
29 metres (8 storey) 11.5 metres (3 storey).
Retain and enlarge a ground level Village Green.
Surrounding residential areas interface. No building envelope.

Minimum setback 8 metres, except for Unley Road, and no building envelope.
Building envelope of 30oat 3 metres above ground level from adjoin sites.
Specified setbacks from residential streets based upon 30oenvelope to opposite front boundaries.
Building envelope of 30oat 3 metres above ground level from adjoin sites.
Minimum residential street setbacks and building envelope of 30oat 3 metres above ground level from the zone boundary at street centre-line.
Council also voted to exclude residential development from the Community Area east of Unley Road to the south of Oxford Terrace.

Project timeline

August - The concepts outlined in the Draft Unley Central Precinct Plan were adopted unanimously by Council as the long term vision for the precinct

Jan – City of Unley submits a Statement of Intent to the State Government to amend the Development Plan
May – Minister approves Statement of Intent to the State Government to amend the Development Plan
November – Council wide Community consultation on the vision and principals for Unley Central

February – Community feedback considered by the CSDP Committee
April - Design Lab on DPA (with a selection of residents and developers)
September – DPA consultation
December – Public hearing

March - Workshop
March – CSDP Committee decide on what will be recommended to Council
March – Council votes on way forward at Council meeting
April – Council reports back to Minister with a proposed way forward
July - Minister for Planning gives final approval to the DPA on 4 July