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October 2012 – Proposed changes to 10-day code-based approvals

The NSW Department of Planning and Infrastructure is seeking feedback on proposed changes to code-based exempt and complying development approvals (under the State Environmental Planning Policy (Exempt and Complying Development Codes) 2008 (“the Codes SEPP”) and the Environmental Planning & Assessment Regulation 2000 (“EP&A Regulation”).

The proposed amendments to the Codes SEPP and EP&A Regulation will:

  • Include a new code that provides for new industrial buildings up to 20,000 m2, and additions to existing commercial buildings up to 1,000 m2 for retail uses and 2,500 m2 for commercial uses. Other commercial and industrial development types including first use, changes of use, fitouts and ancillary development are also included in this new code.
  • Expand the General and Rural Housing Codes to include additional residential development types, including built to boundary for lots between 10 and 12.5 metres, basements and excavation in relation to single dwellings, and detached studios. Development standards in the housing codes will also be amended to provide more flexibility and broaden the application of the codes.
  • Allow for internal building alterations to multi-unit developments, and minor external additions to multi-unit developments where there is no additional floor area.
  • Includes new types of exempt development including advertising and signage, temporary uses and structures, expanded changes of use, outdoor footpath dining up to 20 m2 in area, mobile food and drink outlets and waterways structures. Changes are also proposed to existing exempt development types and development standards as a result of stakeholder consultation.
  • Amend the provisions for land based exclusions and other restrictions to increase situations where exempt and complying development can be undertaken.
  • Include a new First Safety Code to provide for alterations to a sprinkler systems, other fire safety systems, and changes to fire alarm communication links as complying development.
  • Include the following as prerequisites to be considered as complying development:
    • certification by Roads and Maritime Services where a new building or additions over 5,000 m2 is proposed on or adjacent to a classified road,
    • certification by a qualified person where a new building or change of use is proposed on specified land which is required to be remediated, and
    • an independent report on fire safety upgrade for existing commercial and industrial buildings when considering additions and alterations to pre-1993 buildings.
  • Require conditions to be imposed on complying development including:
    • the payment of section 94 contributions to councils for complying development, to be paid prior to the commencement of work,
    • the payment of a damage deposit/security bond to councils for complying development but only where council’s published policy specifies the payment of those bonds, and
    • a requirement for road, rail and other public infrastructure to be protected during construction.
  • introduce a new requirement for neighbour notification for applications for complying development certificates, to be given to the occupier of dwellings within 50 metres of the site where works are proposed at least 5 days prior to determination, and
  • amend the existing requirements for neighbour notification prior to the commencement of building works, to match the same time frame and notification area as above. Submissions must be lodged by 9 November 2012.
  • Two draft templates for neighbour notification are also available for comment.

Note: This information is not to be relied upon as legal advice.

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