Bigger role likely for LG on livable housing design guidelines

Momentum for all homes built nationwide to incorporate livable housing design principles is picking up, with implications for local government.

Advocacy group Livable Housing Australia (LHA) says the Australian Building Codes Board’s proposal to include minimum accessibility standards for housing in the National Construction Code (NCC) – together with aspects of the Aged Care Royal Commission – point to an increased role for councils in facilitating the adoption of design standards that cater to the diverse needs of all residents.

Sydney Hearing 3 of the Aged Care Royal Commission focused on accommodation and, in part, looked at how the Brisbane City Council (using the Universal Housing Design Incentive) is encouraging housing development that caters to the accessibility needs of all residents, including those who are ageing, or who have a disability or are injured, and families with young children through newly constructed developments certified as meeting the Livable Housing Design Guidelines Gold or Platinum performance levels.

LHA says it is conceivable the inquiry could recommend that councils throughout Australia adopt an approach like the the Universal Housing Design Incentive to encourage more housing options for aging in community settings.

Additionally, the recent HomeBuilder grant with its requirement that eligible renovations should improve the accessibility or safer or liability of the property suggests increased development applications that incorporate Livable Housing Design Guidelines.

LHA wants to develop a community of practice to explore best practice, highlight successes within local government for implementing Livable Housing Design Guidelines into planning controls, and identify key impediments.

Local governments that have Livable Housing Design Guidelines in their planning controls or are looking to do so can contact LHA on