In an effort to streamline the development approvals process for residential, as well as smaller commercial or industrial development, the State Environmental Planning Policy (Exempt and Complying Development Codes) 2008 has been expanded. If you’re interested to know whether your development can be approved as ‘exempt or complying development’, please contact the planning team at the MacroPlan’s Sydney Office on 9221 5211.

Some of the new forms of development captured by the recent changes include:

  • Expanded provisions for advertising and signage.
  • Minor works in environmentally sensitive areas.
  • The General and Rural Housing Complying Development Code has been expanded to include single and 2 storey dwellings with a maximum height of 8.5m, on lots of 200m2 or more in residential zones, or 4000m2 or more in rural zones. Basements will now count as a storey.
  • Broader change of use provisions.
  • The Commercial and Industrial Complying Codes have been expanded to include new buildings and additions:
    • new industrial buildings and additions up to a maximum of 20,000m²
    • building additions for retail premises up to 1,000m²,
    • building additions for any other commercial purposes up to 2,500m², and
    • ‘first use’ of land provisions.
    • development approved under this code must not clear more than 1,000m² of native vegetation
    • development must meet developments standards for FSR, Height, Setbacks and other council requirements such as car parking etc.

There are also new provisions requiring a Council or a private certifier to notify neighbours (within a 20 metre radius of the development site) 14 days before a Complying Development Certificate (CDC) is determined where the CDC relates to new dwellings, additions to existing dwellings, new groups homes, a new secondary dwelling, or the demolition of an existing dwelling.

All applications under the code will now be required to be accompanied by a certificate of title to identify registered easements.

As always, there are various land based exclusions for Exempt and Complying Development, such as flood prone land, critical habitat, wilderness areas and heritage listed items. Councils have been instructed to identify whether the entire lot is affected or only partly affected in Section 149 Certificates.

In some cases development may still be assessable on the part of the lot not affected, for example not in the foreshore area. We recommend identifying the exclusions first, before identifying the relevant form of Exempt and Complying Development.

The new codes come into effect on 22 February, 2014.

For more information please contact Patricia Docherty - Senior Consultant - Planning or Carlo Di Giulio - Senior Consultant - Planning and Urban Design  from the Sydney office on 02 9221 5211.