Resilient Land Program

The Resilient Land Program is part of a suite of measuresto deliver a sustainable supply of suitable land to deliver housing options in the Northern Rivers. The program is being delivered alongside the Resilient Homes Program that was announced in October 2022.

2 cows facing camera in a grassy field in Northern Rivers area

The submission period for the Draft Resilient Lands Strategy has now ended.

Submissions are now being reviewed to finalise the Resilient Lands Strategy. Pending this review, the final Strategy is expected to be released in August 2023. 

These programs are funded through the Resilient Homes Fund, including:

  1. $700 million for the Resilient Homes Program, 50:50 co-funded by the Australian Government and NSW Government. 
  2. $100 million for the Resilient Lands Program, fully funded by the NSW Government.

What are the objectives of the Resilient Lands Program? 

The Resilient Lands Program encompasses  place-based strategy, policy and planning to enable the Northern Rivers communities to build back better. 

A key component of the Resilient Lands Program is a process to identify flood-safe land suitable for redevelopment to help relocate Northern Rivers residents impacted by the 2022 floods.

How will the Resilient Lands Program deliver housing options for residents?

The Resilient Lands Program is being delivered through a seven-step Resilient Lands Roadmap (the Roadmap). The Roadmap began with the opening of the Resilient Lands Expression of Interest and will lead to investment of the $100 million Resilient Lands Fund to deliver a range of options in the Northern Rivers for flood impacted residents and the Northern Rivers community.

The NSW Reconstruction Authority is also working with local councils and state agencies to identify opportunities on public and council owned land that may be suitable for development as part of the Resilient Lands Program.


Infographic titled Resilient Lands Roadmap lists seven steps: Lands EOI open for private landholders; Land Suitability Assessment Stage 1 – Land IQ; Land Suitability Assessment Stage 2 – Expert Panel; Exhibition; Review; Resilient Lands Strategy; Investment and delivery.

Where are we up to in the Roadmap?

The Landholder Expressions of Interest was the first step of the Resilient Lands Program and allowed the NSW Government to work with the community to understand land availability options in the Northern Rivers. 

Step 1 to Step 4 of the Roadmap are now complete.

Step 5 - Review of the Resilient Lands Strategy is under-way. Submissions made during the community consultation period are currently being reviewed, before the release of a final Resilient Lands Strategy, expected to be towards the end of 2023. 

How were the initial expression of interest applications assessed?

To ensure a robust process that provides additional homes, reduces community risk and considers environmental values, all expressions of interest applications were reviewed using a two-stage Land Suitability Assessment.

How was land assessed during Stage 1 of the Land Suitability Assessment?

More than 300 expressions of interests from landholders across the seven impacted Local Government Areas were received.  

The first stage of the assessment process used the Department of Planning and Environment’s Land iQ. Land iQ is a world-first data platform that uses smart technology to rapidly but robustly assess land based on more than 100 data sets.  

This assessment included a number of key measures including land zoning, assessment of flood and bushfire risk, important biodiversity values and strategic alignment with state and local government plans.

Flow chart demonstrating the Land Assessment Process outlines hard and manageable constraints and the factors that land is scored against. The highest scoring sites are shortlisted for Stage 2 Assessment.

Stage 1 of the Land Suitability Assessment was used to produce a shortlist of sites to be assessed by the independent Resilient Lands Expert Panel (the Independent Panel). During this Stage,  relevant councils and the Department of Planning and Environment were consulted on the suitability of sites to be shortlisted for Stage 2 Assessment.

How was land assessed during during Stage 2 of the Land Suitability Assessment?

The second stage of the assessment process was undertaken by an independent Panel. The Panel considered criteria related to three core areas:  

  1. Environment, climate change and resilience,  
  2. Community, social wellbeing and sense of place, and  
  3. Urban planning and deliverability  

During Stage 2, each Panel Member independently assessed a shortlist of sites ahead of a Panel moderation session. The Panel Moderation session then helped identify sites suitable for residential development that will help reduce community risk in short, medium and long-term:  

  1. Short-term sites are for immediate investigation and provide options to relocate residents impacted by the 2022 Floods eligible under the voluntary home purchase scheme;
  2. Medium term sites can reduce community risk over time and may be appropriate to consider in response to future events; and 
  3. Long term sites have strategic merit and may be required in the long-term to help reduce community risk.   

These lands were incorporated into the Draft Resilient Lands Strategy.   

Diagram showing how the Resilient Lands Expert Panel contributed to the Resilient Lands Strategy. Panel members undertook an independent assessment across a number of assessment criteria related to environment, climate change and resilients; community, social wellbeing and sense of place; and urban planning and deliverability. These sites are outlined in the draft Resilient Lands Strategy.

What's next?

Submissions on the Draft Resilient Lands Strategy are currently being reviewed. 

After this takes place a final Resilient Lands Strategy will be released (Step 6 of the Resilient Land Roadmap) and the NSW Reconstruction Authority will continue progressing with investment and delivery of land in the Northern Rivers (Step 7).

Find out more about the Resilient Land Program

Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

Resilient Lands Strategy

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