SSSI VIC News - February 2019

January 31, 2019



Welcome to another New Year, I hope it finds you fit and well and you have a safe and prosperous year ahead of you.  Congratulations go to SSSI Honorary Fellow Ray Holmes who was deservedly awarded an AM -Member of the Order of Australia in the recent Australia Day Honours, for significant service to surveying and mapping and to professional organisations.  More details are available below in this bulletin.

It was just ten years ago this month when we were confronted with catastrophic bushfires that had a profound effect on many people in this State. The value of ready and accurate spatial information came to the fore with its utilisation by emergency groups and others involved in the reconstruction process.

Under the auspices of the Surveyor General, the Victorian  Bushfire Surveying Taskforce was set up to re-establish control networks, identify areas requiring survey marks and monuments and establish GNSS base stations. SSI as it was then known, was part of the Taskforce along with other professional bodies, industry associations government and academia. Some 300 volunteers subsequently took part in recovering and referencing survey marks in bushfire affected areas across the state that would then allow road alignments and property boundaries to be re-established on a fee for service basis.

The first of our tri-breakfast series covering various aspects of Data Capture Methods for Reality Modelling will be held on Monday February 11, subsequent events in the series will be held on Monday 13 May and Monday 22 July.

The WIS Distinguished Speaker series will be holding an event in March in conjunction with International Women’s Day. Please keep an eye on the calendar of events for details of these and other events.

Lindsay Perry

Vic Region Chair




Dr. Ray Eden Holmes AM

Ray commenced his career in 1945 at the Department of Crown Lands and Surveys and then transferred to the State Rivers and Water Supply Commission (SRWSC).At the SRWSC Ray gained his cadastral licence and worked on engineering and cadastral surveys associated with water supply, irrigation and dam development throughout northern Victoria.  Ray held a number of senior management roles in SRWSC becoming Superintending Surveyor for North Central Victoria and was appointed Chief Surveyor in 1972.

In 1979 Ray was appointed Surveyor General of Victoria and served in that position until his retirement in 1988. In 1994 he was awarded a Doctorate of Surveying Honaris Causa for his services to the surveying profession in Victoria by the University of Melbourne.

During 1970 and 1971 Ray was seconded to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization(UNFAO) on the Awash Valley Hydrological Project in Ethiopia and  during his ‘retirement’, Ray continued working as a consultant to both the World Bank and the UNFAO as an expert adviser on land administration. 

Ray was an active participant in the Institution of Surveyors Australia for a number of years, serving and convening a number of sub committees and as President of the Victorian Division in 1975. Ray served from 1985-1986 as the 28thFederal President of the Institution of Surveyors Australia a forerunner body of SSSI.

During his time as Federal President Ray drew attention to the need of the profession to develop its profile in international and overseas activities and warned against the risk of becoming elitist in attitude, with being primarily concerned with the narrowing field of cadastral surveying and ignoring some of the other related disciplines, which might perceive surveyors with cadastral surveying being their sole area of expertise.. He stated that it is in all our interests to continue to foster and strengthen our relationship with  related bodies

Ray also raised the matter of our involvement in the international arena in particular the Southern Asia Pacific Region.  A major step was ISA sponsoring the first South East Asian Conference in Singapore in 1979 and it was Ray’s suggestion that it was timely to achieve the formation of a  regional association under the auspices of an existing international body such as FIG.

As part of our maturing roles and responsibilities in the international scene, Ray played an instrumental role in our successful bid for the XX FIG Congress held in Melbourne in 1994, the first time it was ever awarded to a country in the southern hemisphere. He was also the congress director for this highly successful event.

In recent correspondence to the Victoria Region Ray stated thatI have always been proud to be a member and a strong advocate of an institute representing the full range of our profession.

When one considers that later this year we are hosting the South East Asian Conference in Darwin and are taking a leadership role through Rob Sarib in the development of a FIG Asia Regional Capacity Network, it is as a result of the visionary groundwork of people such as Ray Holmes that  today we can  implement such initiatives with our regional neighbours

The recognition bestowed on Dr Ray Holmes as a Member to the Order of Australia is richly deserved.




Victorian Planning Authority (VPA) Updates

The VPA looks forward to delivering Minister Wynne's vision for planning for this upcoming term of government and will sharpen our focus to align with this government's priorities. Some early areas of focus include priority precincts, affordable and social housing, and infrastructure coordination.

Minister Wynne has approved five precinct structure plans, delivering on his pledge to unlock 100,000 new housing lots by 2018. The VPA is proud to have designed these plans for holistic, well-designed communities that will create new opportunities for Victorians to live, work and relax.

The Precinct Structure Plans include:-

Cardinia Creek South Precinct Structure Plan: providing 10,000 homes and 1,600 jobs, along with two local town centres, three government primary schools and one government secondary school.

Minta Farm precinct: a new employment precinct south of Berwick that will provide 3,000 new homes and 11,000 new jobs that focus on innovation and technology.

Beveridge Central PSP: The newly approved community of Beveridge Central in Melbourne’s north is set to provide 3,400 homes close to schools, trains and upgraded roads. It will be developed over more than 10 years and has been within the Urban Growth Boundary since 2010.

Bacchus Marsh Urban Growth Framework: The government has also approved a long-term plan that will guide Bacchus Marsh’s growth over coming decades with its population anticipated to more than double to 50,000 residents by 2041.

Jacksons Hill Master Plan: The Victorian Government has purchased the 33-hectare historic site from Victoria University and approved the Jacksons Hill Master Plan, which will have a new village green, arts hub and a bustling new neighbourhood on Jacksons Hill.

Streamlining for Growth - Towards accredited approvals: The VPA Board recently signed off on a $100,000 Streamlining for Growth grant to explore a path to accredited approvals.  The project, developed in partnership with the Streamlining for Growth Industry Working Group, will assess and guide the use of private resources to accelerate planning and engineering approvals in Melbourne’s greenfields.

On completion, the report will take the following into consideration:

•  examples in councils, other states and industries

•  how to build capacity and quality in subdivision approvals processes

•  possible accreditation models

•  potential barriers to adoption for state and local government in Victoria.

The report will include an action plan that may include a number of potential pilot projects for 2019. The VPA will establish a project control group in early 2019 and is seeking council and industry representatives




This term of state government will involve key machinery of government and portfolio developments that will affect how the VPA undertakes its planning.

Minister Wynne is now the Minister for Housing as well as Planning, creating stronger links between DHHS, DELWP and VPA to plan for social and affordable housing. DEDJTR is now being split into two Departments. - the Department of Transport, which will result in greater land-use and transport integration, particularly around planning for major transport projects and the other new Department is the Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions.  This will have a key role supporting the VPA in planning and delivering priority precincts for employment land and innovation districts, as well as planning for growth in regional towns and cities. 

Details of the role and operations of these new entities are expected to be progressively developed over coming weeks and months.



Vicplan update
VicPlan has recently been updated to version 2.2.0. New features include Data catalogue, Overlay intersector tool, Improved map layer styling and New data (available in new catalogue feature) which include Precinct Structure Plans areas, Historic LGA boundaries 1991 (pre LGA amalgamation).

Planning for buffers and separation distances
DELWP has engaged Environmental Resources Management Australia Pty Ltd (ERM) to review how land use buffers and separation distances are currently managed in the Victorian planning system. The ERM technical report (PDF, 2.3 MB)provides an assessment of the current planning policy and tools in the Victoria Planning Provisions and analyses local and international case studies to understand how planning currently manages conflicting land uses.

DELWP is now seeking feedback on the management of buffers and separation distances to assist in developing options for future reform. Further information can be obtained at the following website: Submissions will also be received up to C.O.B Friday 15thFebruary.



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