Cowra Shire is in the Lachlan Valley in central west New South Wales, approximately 300 kilometres west of Sydney. The Shire covers approximately 2,800 square kilometres, with a growing population in excess of 13,000 people. The major urban centre is Cowra Township.

The Shire forms an integral part of the wider agricultural and industrial region with important exports including cereal and oil seeds, livestock and butchered meat, wine, furniture, spare parts and machinery and canned food. Cowra Township has a sub-regional service centre role within the catchments of the larger regional centres of Orange and Bathurst.

Cowra Shire appointed Collie to complete a Land Use Strategy in response to planning reform initiatives of the NSW Department of Planning. The Strategy is part of a process but provides the strategic framework to guide the preparation of a new local environment plan.

The Strategy addresses critical landuse issues such as future urban expansion, rural and rural residential interface issues and natural resource management. It includes a set of planning criteria that can be incorporated into the Local Environment Plan and a series of framework plans to guide future development.