For those people who are looking at land division or a change of use for a property and want to do their initial research in their own time, a very useful resource is the Development Plans for individual Councils. For Mount Barker, these plans can be found on
http://www.dcmtbarker.sa.gov.au/page.aspx then the ‘Development’ tab, then the ‘Development Plan’.
From this plan you can refer to the Objectives and Principles of Development for the whole of Council. This sets out the Council’s overall vision for the whole of Council area. It is then quite a simple process to go to a Map of where your property of interest is and to confirm the Zoning for that area. It is the Zoning that sets out more clearly the controls on land use. eg. what you can & cannot do. From these maps you can also identify the Policy area for that location. Policy areas identify where there may be some area specific objectives eg historic character, higher density (small blocks), professional offices.
Council staff are always helpful as well and it may be that the research you do will enable you to be better prepared for when you speak to them.