NSW government calls for experts to join IHAPs

The New South Wales government is calling on architects and other relevant experts to express their interest in becoming a chair or panel member for the recently introduced Independent Hearing Assessment Panels (IHAPs) that will become mandatory for all councils in Sydney and Wollongong City Council.

Introduced in August as a measure against corruption, IHAPs are intended to bring “expertise, transparency and integrity” to the assessment of development applications at the local level, according to the Minister for Planning and Housing Anthony Roberts.

The panels, which will consider all developments worth between $5 million and $30 million, are to be led by “experienced planning professionals.”

Each panel will comprise a community member and three independent experts in one or more of the following fields: architecture, planning, heritage, the environment, urban design, economics, traffic and transport, law, engineering, tourism, or government and public administration. The chair of the panel will also need to have expertise in law or government and public administration.

Australian Institute of Architects NSW chapter president Andrew Nimmo, speaking with ArchitectureAU at time of the announcement of the mandatory panels, said “[It] is really important that at least one of [the panel members] has design expertise as their basis for being on the panel. I think that’s critical.”

Experts interested in applying to become a member of the IHAPs can attend an information session on Tuesday 5 September, 3-4pm at Primus Hotel, 339 Pitt Street, Sydney.

For more information, head here.

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