Steffan Harries

Types of Approvals

Town planning can be a complicated process, the first step is to figure out whether or not you need approval!

In the state of Queensland, different projects in various locations require specific approvals. Queensland’s regulatory bodies oversee the approval process to ensure compliance with regulations and standards.

Types of Approvals

or certain projects in Queensland, known as accepted development, no approvals are necessary. Brisbane City Council previously referred to these projects as exempt development or self-assessable development. However, specific requirements must be met for these projects to fall under the accepted development category.

Other projects in Queensland, regardless of their location, require both development approval and building approval. Even if a development application is not needed for your project, it is still possible that building approval may be required.

It is important to note that certain types of development are strictly prohibited in Queensland. These projects are not eligible for application and are referred to as prohibited development. The Council or relevant authorities do not assess applications for prohibited development projects.

Use the below links to skip to the relevant section:

Accepted development, subject to requirements

Certain types of projects in Queensland are exempt from requiring a development application, provided that they adhere to the rules and applicable codes set by the Council. These projects fall under the category of accepted development, subject to specific requirements.

Accepted development

In cases where development is categorised as accepted development in Queensland, there is no requirement for a development application, and there is no need to adhere to the Codes or other requirements outlined in the local council planning schemes.

Development approval

Development approvals play a vital role in determining the appropriate allocation of various activities and effectively managing and mitigating potential impacts on surrounding properties. The responsibility for evaluating development applications and granting development approvals lies with the Council.

If you require a development approval, you might need a Development Application.

Building approval

Building approvals serve to ensure the safety and compliance of buildings and structures, and they are granted by private building certifiers. In cases where a building or structure fails to meet specific criteria, an application for building work may be required to be referred to the Council for a siting variation. Although Steffan Harries are not building certifiers, we work alongside them to ensure your approvals are fit for purpose.

Siting relaxations

In order to build within the prescribed boundary setbacks, you may need to obtain a siting variation or relaxation from a private building certifier. It is important to determine whether you require a siting variation and understand the process for application. You can find the necessary information and instructions on how to apply by seeking appropriate guidance by contacting a local certifier. Steffan Harries can also assist in lodging siting variation requests with local council’s where necessary.

Amenity and Aesthetics

In order to build within the prescribed boundary setbacks, you may need to obtain a siting variation or relaxation from a private building certifier. It is important to determine whether you require a siting variation and understand the process for application. You can find the necessary information and instructions on how to apply by seeking appropriate guidance by contacting a local certifier. Steffan Harries can also assist in lodging siting variation requests with local council’s where necessary.

subdivision approval

Frequently Asked Questions

Self-assessable is a term used under the Sustainable Planning Act 2008 for development that does not require approval so long as you can comply with the relevant codes set by the planning scheme. That is, it is self-assessed. The term has now been replaced under the Planning Act 2016 as ‘Accepted Development’.

Development that does not require a Development Application (DA) can be classified into two subsets: Accepted Development (exempt) and Accepted Development that must comply with specific requirements (previously known as self-assessable).

It depends on the context. DA might mean ‘Development Application’ but it also might mean ‘Development Approval’. So you might need a DA to get your DA. Sorry for the confusion but we don’t make the rules here at Steffan Harries.

Depending on the zone, the overlays, and the scale of the extension, not all will require approval. It is always best to get in touch with one of our town planners to discuss.

Unsure? Why not get in touch with one of our town planners to help?

Scroll to Top

Have an enquiry?

The best and fastest way to make an enquiry is to submit our online form here.

Still prefer to call? 

A member of our admin team will be happy to take down your details and send them to a planner for assessment. Call us on 33170042.

Please have the details of your enquiry ready.

In a hurry for advice?

Need quick advice about a prospective purchase? Get a formal Due Diligence Report within 2 business days.

Preview what you will receive here.

Need urgent advice?

Looking at purchasing a property? Unlock insights about your property’s potential!

For $800 you’ll get the following:

✅A comprehensive review of critical planning aspects
✅A written report
✅Overview of the development potential (if any)
✅High-level feedback from a planning Director

Expect your tailored advice within just 2 business days. Click here to view a sample report.