What Is Town Planning & Do I Need It

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Town Planning

Town planning is the process of seeking council approval for residential developments or small commercial and industrial projects in the form of a planning permit.

It involves liaising with local Councils to request approval for new developments or changes to buildings and/or land use. Councils have specific and strict regulations and policies and a town planner is needed to navigate these obstacles. 

Not all developments need town planning such as areas that are not heritage listed. However, it is vital to fully understand the local council planning rules and regulations.  Town planning is generally required when: 

  • Building more than one dwelling on a block of land, including adding a new dwelling in the backyard depending on block size
  • The project is on a small block – often under 450m2 or in some cases 300m2 depending on the area.
  • There is an overlay such as heritage protection or environmental preservation. 
  • You require a dispensation 
  • Any aspect that does not satisfy the Acceptable Development criteria for residential dwellings under the Residential Design Codes.

A planning permit is different from a building permit and the required drawings are also different. A planning permit allows a certain use and/or development on land through the council only. And building permit allows the construction of a building or development. 

If a planning permit is required, it must be obtained before a building permit can be issued. A planning permit does not mean you no longer need a Building Permit.

A town planner works on behalf of a designer or builder and communicates with the local council. Designer Planning will take care of the town planning process if your project requires it a planning permit. The application fees themselves are relatively small. However, if your project requires additional drawings due to town planning there will be an additional charge of $550. Your designer will notify you through the design process if your project needs town planning. Furthermore, there is no guarantee that permits will be granted, but it is very rare our team won’t be able to find a solution which satisfies all parties.

If you are unsure whether you will need a planning permit contact us today and our team can advise you accordingly. We can streamline the process and get your project underway. Contact us today. 

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