The South East Queensland Regional Plan 2017

Also known as ShapingSEQ, the South East Queensland Regional Plan 2017 is the newly released regional plan for the SEQ region. It replaces the South East Queensland Regional Plan 2009–2031 and was given effect on 11 August 2017.

ShapingSEQ provides a regional framework for growth management, and sets planning direction for sustainable growth, global economic competitiveness and high-quality living by a range of actions including:

  • identifying a long-term sustainable pattern of development
  • harnessing regional economic strengths and clusters to compete globally
  • ensuring land use and infrastructure planning are integrated
  • valuing and protecting the natural environment, productive land, resources, landscapes and cultural heritage
  • promoting more choice of housing
  • locating people and jobs closer together, and moving people and goods more efficiently and reliably
  • promoting vibrant, fair, healthy and affordable living and housing
  • valuing design and embracing the climate
  • maximising the use of existing infrastructure and planning for smarter solutions
  • supporting strong rural communities.


MacroPlan provided advocacy services on behalf of some of our clients regarding ShapingSEQ to the State Government.  Typically, this centres on proposed changes to the urban footprint and the potential impact on their existing interests. For example, MacroPlan was instrumental in driving change to the new SEQRP 2017 to allow the establishment of residential care facilities outside of the urban footprint. MacroPlan’s Executive Chairman Brian Haratsis also undertook a review of the draft ShapingSEQ and provided direct feedback to the senior executives responsible for the document from the Department of Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning.

MacroPlan has identified a number of changes in the new plan. For example, under the 2009 SEQ Regional Plan SPRP, residential development (other than that which was exempt) and shopping centres could not establish an overriding need in the public interest. This was done to ensure this type of development could not occur outside the Urban Footprint. The SEQ regulatory provisions carry over this intent by identifying these activities as prohibited development outside the Urban Footprint.

Notably, residential care facilities have been included as a special type of community activity to ensure that new models of living and services can be accommodated more effectively in SEQ to service an ageing population. It is recognised that this activity has permanent living arrangements, so size limitations apply where it is proposed outside of the Urban Footprint.

The requirement to plan and accommodate for an ageing regional population, is something which MacroPlan argued should be a key consideration of the plan as well as being central to any future regional plans. MacroPlan successfully highlighted to the State Government that the draft ShapingSEQ document had not adequately weighed the full significance of the aging cohort which meant that the draft lacked the commensurate planning provisions for their needs. This potentially significant matter has now been responded to by the final version of the plan.

You can access a full copy of 'Shaping SEQ - South East Queensland Regional Plan 2017' here.

Should you wish to know more regarding the ShapingSEQ, the South East Queensland Regional Plan 2017 please contact Mark Courtney General Manager – Queensland or Damian Delmanowicz Senior Planner