Employment Zones Reform

May 31, 2022

The NSW Department of Planning and Environment (DPE) is currently exhibiting the translation of existing Business and Industrial zones into the new Employment zones. The exhibition is being held on the NSW DPE Planning Portal for 6 weeks from 31 May 2022 to 12 July 2022. 

This is the implementation stage of a reform that replaces Business and Industrial zones with Employment zones within individual local environmental plans across NSW. Implementation follows the introduction the Employment zones within the Standard Instrument (Local Environmental Plans) Order 2006 in December 2021.  

NSW DPE has worked closely with each council to ensure Local Environmental Plans are amended, consistent with the intent of the reform, while also ensuring the land-use planning outcomes are locally appropriate. After the exhibition, NSW DPE will be working with councils to finalise implementation ahead of the new zones coming into force on 1 December 2022.  

To view the detail and make a submission please visit the NSW DPE Planning Portal

What Changes Apply to Lithgow?

The Employment Zones Reform propose the following changes to zoning and planning controls in the Lithgow Local Government Area:

  • All existing Business (B) and Industrial (IN) zones as identified in the Lithgow Local Environmental Plan 2014 will be replaced with the following zones in the translated column:
Employment Zones Reform Zoning Changes Lithgow LEP 2014
Existing Translated
B1 – Neighbourhood Centre E1 – Local Centre
B2 – Local Centre E1 – Local Centre
B4 – Mixed Use MU1 – Mixed Use
B6 – Enterprise Corridor E3 – Productivity Support
B7 – Business Park E3 – Productivity Support
IN1 – General Industrial E4 – General Industrial
IN2 – Light Industrial E4 – General Industrial
IN3 – Heavy Industrial E5 – Heavy Industrial


  • New land use tables, including zone objectives, have been developed to support the updated zoning framework and represent a “best-fit” from the existing zones and the directions from NSW DPE. This is relevant to the assessment of Development Applications and Planning Proposals.
  • Additions to the dictionary within the Lithgow Local Environmental Plan 2014 to define emerging business and industrial developments such as Data Centres, Creative Industries and Goods Repair and Reuse Premises. Additionally, amendments have been made to several land use terms to improve clarity or remove redundant land use functions.

What Will This Mean for My Property?

All property that is currently zoned as either business or industrial under the Lithgow Local Environmental Plan 2014 will be converted to align with the new zoning framework. Properties affected by the reform will be subject to a change in zoning name and land use table. Earlier this year, NSW DPE requested Council to review the preliminary translations to ensure that the land use tables and zoning reflected as far as possible the local strategic directions and existing land-use.

For more information, refer to the NSW DPE Frequently Asked Questions.

How Long Is the Public Exhibition Period?

The exhibition is being held on the NSW DPE Planning Portal for 6 weeks from 31 May 2022 to 12 July 2022.

Where Can I View the Changes?

NSW DPE are hosting the public exhibition online on the NSW DPE Planning Portal webpage. The webpage will include all relevant information including the Explanation of Intended Effect as well as a web tool that displays the current and proposed zones for lands affected by the reform.

Who Do I Contact to Provide Feedback or Ask Questions?

As the Employment Zones Reform is being managed by NSW Department of Planning and Environment, all representations/submissions are to be made to the Department. Submissions can be made to the department through the Planning Portal website.

The Department have created a Step-By-Step Guide  on how to access the Planning Portal and how to make a submission.

To ensure all submissions are captured, submissions on the reforms SHOULD NOT be made directly to Lithgow City Council.

NSW DPE will share all submission details with Council upon the completion of the exhibition period. Council will review and consider these submissions at a Council Meeting prior to the finalisation of the LEP amendment by the Department.

If you have any questions about the Employment Zones Reform, please contact the Department of Planning and Environment on 1300 420 596 or by email at employment.zones@planning.nsw.gov.au 

If further assistance is required, Council’s Strategic Planning Team is available to assist with any enquiries regarding the Employment Zones Reform on 02 6354 9999 or by email at council@lithgow.nsw.gov.au.



Employment Zones Reform Planning Portal

Employment Zones Reform DPE Website

Planning Portal Viewing and Submission Guide

Frequently Asked Questions

Lithgow Local Environmental Plan 2014