Fairfield Rural Lands Urban Investigation Area

Rural Lands Urban Investigation Area - Updates

The future of Fairfield’s rural lands in Horsley Park and Cecil Park has been affected by the Federal Government's decision to proceed with the Western Sydney International airport at Badgerys Creek and the NSW State Government's planning for expansion of the Western Sydney Employment Lands (including proposed arterial roads through the area).

Following the designation of the Fairfield rural lands as an Urban Investigation Area under the Greater Sydney Region Plan and the Western City District Plan in 2018, Council engaged consultants to undertake a land capability study and identify a number of options for future development. 

The options for the future development of Horsley Park and Cecil Park were publicly exhibited between 9 November 2018 to 8 February 2019. Council on 9 April 2019 considered submissions from the community and resolved to endorse a proposed preferred Structure Plan.

Council has now received feedback from the NSW Greater Sydney Commission (GSC) and State agencies highlighting the need for further detailed investigations into a range of infrastructure, environmental and transport planning issues.

Planning investigation work is being coordinated by a steering committee co-chaired by the Greater Sydney Commission and Fairfield City Council. Council is seeking funding support from the State Government to further progress planning for the Fairfield Rural Lands Urban Investigation Area. Council Officers have continued to have discussions with representatives from the Greater Sydney Commission and State agencies through the UIA Steering Committee.  

A report to the Fairfield City Outcomes Committee held on 14 September 2021 (Item 86) provides an update on the status of key planning issues relevant to the Fairfield Rural Lands Urban Investigation Area (UIA) in Horsley Park and Cecil Park.

This includes a recent report released by the Aerotropolis Independent Community Commissioner to the Minister for Planning and Public Spaces regarding landowners concerns about land that has been rezoned for acquisition in the Aerotropolis and affected by aircraft noise restrictions under the State Environmental Planning Policy – Western Sydney Aerotropolis. Planning rules introduced by the NSW State Government in October 2020 restricts ‘noise sensitive development’ (including residential development) on land in Horsley Park affect by the 20-25 Australian Noise Exposure Concept (ANEC) footprint of the  Western Sydney Airport at Badgerys Creek as well as requires aircraft noise insulation (commenced in April 2021) for future residential development located within 13km of the airport.

The Commissioner’s report outlines a number of important recommendations to the State and Federal Governments in regard to aircraft noise issues.  However, at this stage it is unclear whether the recommendations applying to these restrictions also apply to properties located in the Fairfield Local Government Area.

Since the last report to Council in September 2020 regarding the aircraft noise restrictions, Council has continued to advocate with the State Government for the removal of the planning noise restrictions and to allow consideration of future 1 acre (4,000m2) subdivision in the area as identified under the Fairfield Rural Lands Urban Investigation Area Structure Plan.  In March 2021, Council convened a public meeting with residents of Horsley Park and Cecil Park and confirmed that it would continue to lobby for changes in these rules.

During 2020 and 2021 a number of major planning and infrastructure projects have progressed.  This includes approval of the M12 Motorway project, progress in investigations for the East/West Passenger Rail, upgrade of The Horsley Drive (between the M7 and Cowpasture Road), provision of the Western Sydney Advanced Water Recycling Facility to service the Western City and new Southern Link (state arterial) Road through the northern section of Horsley Park. 

These planning and infrastructure projects will support future development in the Western Sydney Aerotropolis and new airport as well as have a significant bearing on future planning for the Fairfield Rural Lands Urban Investigation Area.  

Draft Options - Exhibition Material - November 2018 to February 2019

An Urban Capability Assessment and Draft Structure Plan Options for the Fairfield Rural Lands Urban Investigation Area, covering the suburbs of Horsley Park and Cecil Park, was placed on public exhibition from November 2018 to February 2019.

Feedback - State Agencies

Council has now received feedback from the NSW Greater Sydney Commission (GSC) and State agencies that can be viewed under the following link:

Greater Sydney Commission and State Agencies Comments

The feedback from the Greater Sydney Commission and State agencies highlights the need for further detailed investigations into a range of infrastructure, environmental and transport planning issues relevant to the Urban Investigation Area. 

The work required to address the issues raised by the Greater Sydney Commission and State agencies will be coordinated by a steering committee chaired by the Greater Sydney Commission.  It will also require considerable financial resources.  In this regard, Council is seeking funding support from the State Government through the steering committee to further progress structure and master planning for the Urban Investigation Area.

Council will continue to advocate to the Federal and State governments for 1-acre subdivision to be permissible in the area of Horsley Park affected by the 20-25 Aircraft Noise Exposure Contour (ANEC) associated with the Western Sydney Airport. 

Council will also keep the community updated on further progress (including the timing of the next stages) in the structure and master planning as information becomes available.

Please contact Council’s Customer Service Team on 9725 0222 for more information.

Preferred Draft Structure Plan

Council at its meeting of the 9 April 2019 considered submissions from the community and Council officer’s recommendations regarding the draft Structure Plan Options for the Fairfield Rural Lands Urban Investigation Area (covering the suburbs of Horsley Park and Cecil Park).
Council subsequently resolved to endorse a proposed preferred Structure Plan for the Rural Lands UIA that can be viewed under the following link:

Preferred Draft Structure Plan(PDF, 1MB)

A copy of the Council officers' report can also be viewed on Council website by clicking on the following link – April Outcomes Committee 2019.

State Environment Planning Policy (SEPP) - Western Sydney Aerotropolis

State Environmental Planning Policy (SEPP) – Western Sydney Aerotropolis (WSA) came into force on 1 October 2020.

Planning rules introduced by the NSW State Government under SEPP WSA includes new restrictions for ‘noise sensitive development’ (including residential development) located under areas of Horsley Park affect by the 20-25 Australian Noise Exposure Concept (ANEC) footprint of the Western Sydney Airport at Badgerys Creek as well as aircraft noise insulation requirements (commencing in April 2021) for future residential development located within 13km of the airport.

For properties in Horsley Park affected by Australian Noise Exposure Concept (ANEC) 20-25 contours of the Western Sydney Airport.

  • Applications for the construction of a dwelling on a vacant parcel of land can only be accepted if the parcel already existed (was part of an approved subdivision) before 1 October 2020 or a development application for construction of a dwelling had been submitted to Council prior to 1 October 2020.
  • ‘Noise sensitive development’, including residential accommodation (dwellings, secondary dwellings and dual occupancy) and other categories (child care centres, schools, places of worship and hospitals) are prohibited after 1 October 2020 subject to concessions listed under the previous dot point.

For additional information about the aircraft noise restrictions affecting Horsley Park and Cecil Park, Council’s position on this and how to make your views known to the State Government, please visit the Airport Information page here.

Wildlife Hazard Controls

Development applications within 13km of the WSA that have the potential to create ‘wildlife hazards’ (eg. attract large gatherings of bird life) will need concurrence from Federal agencies.

For more information, contact Council’s Customer Service Team on 02 9725 0222. 

Rules for knockdown and rebuilds for properties in Horsley Park affected by aircraft noise

State Government planning restrictions for ‘noise sensitive development’ includes residential development under Chapter 4 (Western Sydney Aerotropolis), Clause 4.17 Aircraft noise, of State Environmental Planning Policy (SEPP) Precincts - Western Sydney Parkland City.

The restrictions generally prohibit additional housing (e.g. as part of a new subdivision) or secondary dwellings on existing lots in areas of Horsley Park affected by the 20-25 Australian Noise Exposure Concept (ANEC) footprint of the Western Sydney Airport at Badgerys Creek.

Development applications to knockdown and rebuild an existing dwelling now rely on ‘existing use right provisions’ of the NSW Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979.

To prove existing use rights, the following information is required:

  • Proof of development approval of original dwelling - You can request access to Council records. There are different ways to access information which you can find on the Access to Information page on the Fairfield City Council website.
  • Proof of ongoing residence – You can supply evidence to show that the dwelling has been occupied, including Driver Licence with property address, copy of utility bill with property address.

Development approvals for dwellings in the 20-25 ANEC affected area will have the following condition apply:

Acoustic report – Aircraft Noise

An acoustic report shall be submitted to satisfaction of Fairfield City Council, from a suitably qualified acoustic consultant, confirming that the proposed development complies with the Western Sydney Airport 20-25 ANEC, Wildlife Management and Obstacle Limitation Surface (OLS) SEPP, due to the sites being identified in the SEPP. The report shall be undertaken in accordance with AS 2021-2015, Acoustic – Aircraft Noise Intrusion – building, siting and construction.  All recommendation in the report shall be included on the construction certificate plans.

Council’s Building Control Branch can provide more information on 9725 0222