Leopold has been identified as a sub-regional centre for the Bellarine Peninsula. The existing Leopold Shopping Centre has approximately 5,000 square metres of retail floor space and this would increase to up to 35,000 square metres of retail floor space to serve the sub-regional role.
Council engaged consultants to carry out investigations into the needs and opportunities and constraints of the Sub-Regional Activity Centre. As a result of the findings an Urban Design Framework has been developed.
The Urban Design Framework includes design principles such as walkability, active street frontages, building scale, traffic, sustainability and integration with Leopold Memorial Park Recreation Reserve.
The Urban Design Framework was adopted by Council in September 2011. A Planning Scheme amendment was prepared to implement the Urban Design Framework. The amendment was adopted by Council on 29 January 2013 following a review of submissions by an Independent Planning Panel. The amendment was approved by the Minister for Planning in May 2013.
Amendment C277, approved in 2014, included the rezoning of the sub regional centre to Commercial 1 Zone and the inclusion of a floor space cap in the schedule to the zone.