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The cost of zoning in Sydney

3 May 2018
Can the cost of zoning in Sydney really be $489k per house?
Panellists and Peter Tulip, co-author of 'The Effect of Zoning on Housing Prices', came together to discuss the paper's claims that the zoning costs for a typical Sydney house is $489k.
land zoning map


In March 2018, the Reserve Bank of Australia released a discussion paper 'The Effect of Zoning on Housing Prices' by Ross Kendall and Peter Tulip. The paper includes the bold and eye-catching claim that the zoning effect for a typical Sydney house equates to $489k and for an apartment is $399k.

The paper is controversial. Some have questioned whether the measured ‘cost of zoning’ represents a share of residential property value attributable to this aspect of landuse planning. Others have queried whether the discussion paper is fully across the nature of modern Australian planning systems. The authors remain confident of their findings.

To shed more light on this debate, the Halloran Trust and the City Futures Research Centre at the University of New South Wales invited Peter Tulip, supporters and critics of the paper to a public event at the University of Sydney.

Dr Tulip provided a summary of the paper and panellists commented on the paper’s approach and findings. 

Speakers and panellists

  • Peter Tulip
  • Brendan Coates - Grattan Institute
  • Dr Cameron Murray 
  • Professor Nicole Gurran
  • Professor Rachel Ong - Curtin University