IMPORTANT: In response to COVID-19, Development Assessment services are continuing to be provided via email, on the phone on 1300 434 434 or via teleconference. We encourage you to lodge your application via the NSW Planning Portal and applicants are reminded to submit Council’s Application Form, Application Checklist and Owners Consent with their application through the portal.
Steps to take prior to lodging your development application
There are three steps you should take before preparing a development application:
Step 1: You need to establish what is permissible on your property, what potential constraints affect your property and what controls apply to the proposed development. Go to Council’s Property Search.
Step 2: Consider all design issues taking into account the site, its context, the specific development controls that apply to the proposal, together with any hazards that affect the land and prepare concept plans.
Step 3: Talk to your neighbours and to any local community groups with these concept plans to assist them to understand your proposal. Consider their concerns and seek to compromise to achieve a satisfactory outcome.
Consider a DA Pre-Lodgement Meeting
Council offer a DA Pre-Lodgement Service which is beneficial as Council officers can give an indication of whether your development proposal may be supported or not. We can also give you early advice on your proposal and confirm documentation required for lodgement. Pre-lodgement meetings also offer the opportunity to seek professional advice from other Council departments.
For further information on this service, please visit our DA-Pre Lodgement page.
What information do I need to submit a DA?
Begin by downloading a Development Application, Modification or Review Form.
Northern Beaches Council uses the same form for the above application types, whether residential, industrial or commercial. The form includes a checklist and comprehensive lodgement requirements which detail everything you will have to supply with your application so it can be processed. This might include plans, reports, certificates and other information.
Contact one of Council's Planning Enquiry Officers if you are unsure of what to provide on 1300 434 434.
Lodging your application
Refer to our Lodge your Application page instructions and all relevant information on application lodgement through the NSW Planning Portal.
What to expect when your application has been lodged?
Once you have lodged your application with Council, the following process steps are primarily undertaken depending on the complexity of your application:
An initial review of your application will be undertaken to make sure the application is complete. If the development does not comply and/or it lacks important information, Council will raise any issues or additional information required with the Applicant through the NSW Planning Portal.
Notification/advertisement & Submissions
Once your application is formally accepted by Council, it will be placed on public exhibition for generally 14 days and can extend to 21 days, depending on the development proposed. Surrounding residents will be notified in accordance with Council's Community Participation Plan and will be provided to opportunity to make a submission about the proposed development. Application's on exhibition are viewable through Application Search. Note: If an application is amended before a determination is made, the changes may require re-notification and be subject to a re-notification fee.
The majority of development applications will require input from specialists within Council, e.g Landscape Architect, Building Surveyor, Development or Drainage Engineers, Environmental Health Officer. If the application is classified as Integrated Development, or involves land associated with a public authority, the application may be forwarded through the NSW Planning Portal to the relevant public authority for comment. The assessment officer will take comments received from referral bodies into consideration when assessing the development application
Once the notification period has finished, the assessment officer will commence assessing the development application. The officer will review all plans and supporting documentation, conduct a site inspection, review any submissions made, consider statutory requirements and compliance with relevant planning controls, and complete an assessment report.
The assessment officer will put forward a recommendation to management or the application may be reviewed by various determination panels, depending on its size, complexity, number of submissions received etc.
The applicant will receive electronic confirmation of the outcome of the application.
Online concurrence and referrals
From January 2020, Council will raise requests for development applications requiring a concurrence and/or referral to the relevant agency through the NSW Planning Portal. If a payment is required, the applicant will be notified via email and the application will not progress until it is paid. For referrals not requiring payment will automatically be forwarded to the agency by Council.
Certain development applications require approval (such as a permit or license) from a NSW Government agency, before a determination can be made by Council, these are called integrated development. Integrated development applications require an approval listed in Section 4.46 of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979. For example, this may include an aquaculture permit, mining lease, pollution licence, Aboriginal heritage impact permit. For Council to process an integrated development application, an integrated development fee is payable, in addition to a fee payable to the relevant NSW Government agency through the Planning Portal, as outlined above.
The Online Payments for Concurrence and Referrals guide (NSW Government) will assist you in paying the fee through the NSW Planning Portal.
Before you start work
Before you start any work, make sure you seek advice and approvals from Council or a planning professional. Protect yourself, your project and your community by following the guidance you are given to avoid unnecessary financial and legal consequences.
Once development consent is granted, there are some more steps you must take before you can start to build:
- Obtain a construction certificate - In most cases, a construction certificate is required and can be obtained through an accredited certifier (private certifier) or through Council. Download the Construction Certificate Form and Checklist. Once completed the form may be lodged by mail or in person. Fees apply at this stage. Call us on 1300 434 434 to find out which fees apply.
- Appoint a principal certifying authority (PCA) - The certifier will conduct critical stage inspections and provide final completion certificates once your project is completed. See the Building Professionals Board for more information on appointing a private certifier.
- Notify Council in writing of the PCA's details and the date of commencement of building works, at least 2 days prior to commencement.