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Design Review Panel

The City of Nedlands Design Review Panel (DRP) is responsible for providing the City with a range of expert advice on urban design, architecture, landscape design and sustainability aspects of proposals.

The DRP performs an advisory function only. Although the DRP does not have decision-making powers, its advice will be taken into consideration in the planning assessment and conveyed to the decision-makers once a formal application for Development Approval is lodged.

The DRP reviews proposals and provides advice against the relevant planning framework and  the ten design principles set out in State Planning Policy 7.0 – Design of the Built Environment.

Design review offers applicants the chance to seek technical feedback and resolve complex issues to achieve the best possible design outcome, before lodgement of an application for development approval.

Design Review Panel members
The DRP will draw from a pool of eight external professionals, including a Chairperson and seven fellow DRP members. DRP members are appointed by Council, in accordance with the Design Review Panel Terms of Reference. 

The current DRP members are:

Member Expertise
Dominic Snellgrove Architecture, Urban Design, Heritage, Sustainability and Environmental Design
Emma Williamson Architecture, Urban Design, Public Art
Simon Anderson - Chair Architecture, Urban Design, Sustainability and Environmental Design
Simon Venturi - Deputy Chair Architecture, Urban Design, Sustainability, Environmental Design and Public Art
Tony Blackwell Urban Design, Sustainability, Environmental Design and Public Art
Tony Casella Architecture, Urban Design, Planning, Accessbility
Graham Agar Sustainability, Environmental Design, Services Engineering
John Taylor Architecture, Heritage, Sustainability, Environmental Design, Accessbility, Planning and Local History


Which types of proposals are referred to the Design Review Panel?

  • Multiple dwellings (apartments)
  • Grouped dwellings (ten units or more)
  • Development that is three or more storeys in height (excluding single houses)
  • Major extensions or amendments to the above proposals (at discretion of the City)
  • Mandatory Joint Development Assessment Panel (JDAP) proposals (excluding schools)
  • Optional Joint Development Assessment Panel (JDAP) proposals (unless City considers referral is not required)
  • Amendments to JDAP proposals which the City considers would benefit from DRP review.
  • Any other proposal, which, in the City’s opinion are complex or contentious, likely to be of a significant interest to the community, likely to have a significant impact on the streetscape, are of strategic significance, or would benefit from DRP review  .
  • Strategic planning proposals, such as structure plans, local development plans and local planning policies with built form controls.
  • Proponents are encouraged to contact the City on 9273 3500 prior to lodgement to discuss whether the proposal should be referred to the DRP. 

The Design Review Process

  1. If you are unsure whether your development proposal needs review by the DRP, please feel free to call the Planning Services team on 9273 3500;
  2. Read the Guide to Presenting to the Design Review Panel for an overview of the meeting process; 
  3. Complete the Design Review Panel Application Form and Checklist below, ensuring that all items listed are ready to be attached to your application;
  4. Lodge a DRP Application via email to or in person at the City’s Administration Centre;
  5. Proposal reviewed by DRP and feedback provided to proponent;
  6. Apply for development approval.

Meeting Schedule  

Please submit your DRP applications to the City at least 10 working days prior to the date of the DRP meeting.
These meetings are closed to the public and are held at the City of Nedlands Administration Centre each month, as detailed below:

Applications received by Date of Meeting
Monday 19 April 2021 Monday 3 May 2021
Monday 24 May 2021 Tuesday 8 June 2021
Monday 21 June 2021 Monday 5 July 2021
Monday 26 July 2021 Monday 2 August 2021
Monday 23 August 2021 Monday 6 September 2021
Monday 20 September 2021 Monday 4 October 2021
Monday 18 October 2021 Monday 1 November 2021
Monday 22 November 2021 Monday 6 December 2021 

Additional meetings may be called for urgent matters or where the number of proposal requires. Please note meeting dates are indicative only and are subject to change.


What is the purpose of the Design Review Panel?
The City’s DRP was formed to provide independent expert advice to the City’s Council, Administration and proponents on the design and site planning of specified development proposals.
The DRP facilitates an improvement in urban design and the quality of the built environment within the City of Nedlands through the provision of information, expert advice and recommendations.

When should I refer my application to the Design Review Panel?

Design review should begin well before a development application is submitted.

To get the most out of the DRP, it is recommended that proposals are referred to the DRP as early in the design process as possible (i.e. during concept stage). The design is generally flexible at this stage and can incorporate change without impacting on time and cost constraints  .

Proposals that are referred to the DRP after formal lodgement of the application may experience delays in the development application process due to requiring consideration of ‘good design’ at a later stage. The DRP may suggest changes to the proposal which require substantial changes thereby delaying the process.

The City also offers a Preliminary Planning Assessment service, which allows for preliminary feedback from Planning, Building, Waste, Environmental Health, Parks and Engineering. 

Is there a cost associated with obtaining Design Review Panel advice?
Local Planning Policy – Design Review Panel requires that a proponent is responsible for funding 100% of the cost of a DRP meeting. Depending on how many DRP members are required at the meeting, meeting costs per proposal will be up to $2094   per review. Confirmation of applicable DRP application fees will be provided to proponents at time of DRP application lodgement. 

Additional reviews by the DRP may be required post-lodgement of a development application. These reviews will also be at the proponent’s cost. 

Who can attend a Design Review Panel meeting?
DRP meetings are not open to the public, but proponents are encouraged to attend. 

What is the format of the Design Review Panel meetings?

Each proposal for consideration shall generally be allocated 50 minutes for presentation, questions and discussion, as follows: 

  • Briefing and pre-review panel discussion (panel and administration only) – 10 minutes 
  • Applicant Presentation – 10 minutes 
  • Panel Questions – 10 minutes 
  • Panel Discussion & Assessment (panel and administration only) – 15 minutes
  • Panel recommendation (panel and administration only) – 5 minutes

Will I receive a copy of the Minutes from the Design Review Panel meeting? 
A copy of the minutes from the meeting will be provided to the applicant within 10 working days of the meeting date. 

Proposals that are formally submitted as a development application to the City following consideration by the DRP are required to be accompanied by a statement detailing how, and the extent to which, the comments made from the DRP have been addressed.