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How places are named

Defining boundaries and extent

Locality boundaries

When a proposal to name a locality is being developed, the boundaries of the locality must be clearly defined and described on a plan. In general boundaries should:

  • align to property (cadastral) boundaries or easily distinguishable community or physical boundaries, such as breaks in residential development or zoning, open space areas, ridges, creeks, flood plains, major road centrelines, railways, canals or pipelines
  • be positioned to include areas of similar character and similar functional relationships in the same locality wherever possible
  • contain no gaps or overlaps
  • not define a locality as an ‘island’ within another locality—all localities should share a boundary with at least 2 other localities or at least 1 other locality and a state or coastal boundary
  • not extend beyond local government or state boundaries
  • not segment land parcels or adjacent properties in common ownership
  • not segment roads into different localities except where it is unavoidable for very long roads (this does not include dividing a road along the centreline where that road has been identified as a distinguishable barrier suitable for a boundary).

Some exceptions to these principles may sometimes be necessary, for example in areas with complex local government boundaries or in large areas such as forests, lakes and national parks.

Feature extents

Feature extents shown on plans or described in decisions are indicative of the extent to which a name applies and are not intended as legal boundaries. Feature extents are not recorded in the place names database. Instead, each feature has a coordinate value which represents an approximate centroid of the feature. In watercourse and gully features, the coordinate value represents the downstream extent of the feature (e.g. where it joins another watercourse or reaches the ocean).

In this guide:

  1. What can be named?
  2. Naming processes
  3. Suggesting a place name or boundary change
  4. Naming principles
  5. Defining boundaries and extent
  6. History of Queensland place naming