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Regional planning

Statutory Regional Plans are long-term strategic documents that guide land use planning for state and local governments. They also indicate and set direction through contemporary policy frameworks and spatial representation how our regions will grow and respond to change over time.

They support economic growth, development and liveable communities while protecting natural resources and reconciling state interests outlined in the State Planning Policy.

The purpose of a regional plans is to:

  • set state policy frameworks to deliver defined outcomes in the region
  • guide local government land use decisions (reflected in local planning schemes)
  • guide investment for governments and industry
  • prioritise key infrastructure
  • help manage conflicts and priorities between land uses
  • maintain and protect our natural environment.

Current regional plans

Regional Planning Forward Program

The State Government has committed to reviewing all statutory regional plans that are older than five years, in a program commencing in late 2022. The department will undertake a fit-for-purpose review of ten regional plans comprising of key elements that can be tailored to respond to region-specific challenges and opportunities. The reviews will adopt a coordinated approach aligning economic drivers, infrastructure priorities and land use planning to deliver a more efficient regional planning program.

When undertaking these reviews, the Queensland Government will work with local governments, First Nations peoples, the community and key industry / sectorial groups to ensure a balance of interests are considered.

    • Central Queensland
    • Central West
    • Darling Downs
    • Gulf Regional Development Plan
    • Mackay, Isaac and Whitsunday
    • Maranoa-Balonne
    • North West
    • South West.

    Visit our interactive maps to see the regional areas.


Regional planning in Queensland is governed by:

Together, these seek to reconcile the protection of priority land uses while delivering a diverse and prosperous economic future for our regions.

Contact the department if you require an electronic copy of a previous regional plan.

Frequently asked questions

  • Regional plans set the long-term strategic direction for how our regions will grow and respond to change over time.

    They also assist with:

    • ensuring stakeholder needs are reflected at a regional level through a statutory document
    • including key actions that give state agencies, local governments and other stakeholders responsibilities to take action or deliver key policy outcomes relating to regional economic, social and environmental matters
    • ensuring planning schemes reflect updated policies.
  • Significant legislative and policy changes have occurred to Queensland’s planning framework since the majority of regional plans were made.

    The reviews are timely to address the significant changes to the economic, social and environmental context of our regions.

  • The regional plan reviews include a statutory notification period for draft versions of new regional plans (60 business days) or targeted amendments to regional plans (30 business days).

    Public consultation provides opportunities for the community to have their say and provide their ideas on the future of their region. Stakeholder working groups are established to ensure there is an opportunity for regional stakeholders to contribute to and provide feedback on the relevant regional plan at key stages.

    All reviews will involve collaboration with first nations peoples within each region to ensure a co-ordinated approach to planning and decision making. Regional plans can identify and protect the unique, local Indigenous cultural heritage and support economic growth and tourism opportunities linked to the region’s Indigenous and cultural heritage.

  • The Regional Planning Forward Program adopts a coordinated approach that aims to improve policy alignment and better respond to region-specific challenges and opportunities by integrating the State’s infrastructure priorities, industry policies and statutory regional plans.

    The approach seeks to coordinate regional and infrastructure planning by working across the State Government to produce a combined evidence base and undertake an integrated and more efficient stakeholder engagement approach.

Last updated: 15 Dec 2023