Help us plan the character of future housing in Castlemaine, Campbells Creek and Chewton

Get involved by joining our community reference group

Meeting the housing needs of the community

To help us plan for the future, we are developing a Housing and Neighbourhood Character Strategy for Castlemaine, Campbells Creek and Chewton.

The strategy will guide future residential development to ensure this responds to the changing housing needs of the community.

Get involved

We are at the beginning of this project.

Join our Community Reference Group to help us to better understand the neighbourhood character, heritage and environmental factors which have an impact on planning for future housing as we progress this critical work.

We will also seek feedback from the broader community at key project milestones including:

  • the Issues and Opportunities Paper (later this year)
  • the draft Housing and Neighbourhood Character Strategy (late 2023)
  • during the future planning scheme amendment process (from 2024 onwards)

Become part of the Community Reference Group (CRG)

We need our local community’s knowledge and experience relating to housing and neighbourhood character.

As a member of the CRG you will be critical to supporting and encouraging constructive collaboration between Council and the community.

Submit an Expression of Interest by filling in the form below.

Overview of the CRG

  • Do you live in Castlemaine, Campbells Creek or Chewton?
  • Can you demonstrate knowledge of the area’s neighbourhood character elements, housing, heritage, and landscape?
  • Do you understand of the role of local government in planning for housing and protecting neighbourhood character (as part of strategic planning and the planning scheme)?
  • Can you commit to the project for up to two years?

For further details (including the key selection criteria) please refer to the Terms of Reference established for the group.

About the CRG

The CRG is to support and encourage constructive collaboration between Council (including the Project Control Group and Project Manager) and the community to harness local knowledge and experience relating to housing and neighbourhood character.

Specifically, the community representatives appointed to the Community Reference Group will assist in the development of the project by:

  • Having demonstrated knowledge of the study area’s public and private realm features and built form, as well as an understanding of the role of the planning system in identifying and respecting neighbourhood character and planning for housing
  • Providing feedback on the Issues and Opportunities Paper (to be completed by Council officers) during the public consultation period
  • Providing strategic input and advice into the development and implementation of the project, particularly throughout the preparation of the draft and final Housing and Neighbourhood Character Strategy/s
  • Participating in workshops, meetings and other activities as required (such as field work activities)
  • Assisting in consultation between Council, the consultant and the wider community (if/when required)
  • Reviewing and advising on feedback received during public consultation (if/when required)
  • Facilitating community input into the project and communicating project outcomes back to the community and other key stakeholders
  • Providing advocacy for the project locally, to relevant community groups
  • Reviewing and making recommendations to the Project Director/Manager at key project milestones


The Shire and Castlemaine, Campbells Creek and Chewton are continuing to grow, so we must plan to ensure future housing responds to the needs of our future community.

Based on the 2021 census and forecasts completed by REMPLAN:

  • The population of Mount Alexander Shire Council is projected to increase from 20,253 to 24,316 by 2041.
  • Over half of this population is accommodated within Castlemaine, Campbells Creek and Chewton (current population of approximately 11,352, projected to increase to 12,363 by 2041).

The project is guided by the Planning Practice Notes (PPN) 90 'Planning for Housing' and 90 'Applying the residential zones', developed by the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP).