From Tuesday the 4th of October 2016, City Of Newcastle will no longer require paper copies to be submitted with applications, associated to development and building.  All applications will be submitted on a USB or CD Rom. 

This change will provide the foundations for an electronic planning (e-planning) system, reduce the amount of paper produced and improve customer service.

Want more information on this change? Find out more and access a link to Council's application forms and checklists.

44% of applications submitted to Council need to be amended or require additional information to be provided.

This results in delays in the assessments and may require the application to be re-notified, further increasing the determination time.

To avoid assessment delays, complete the following steps

  1. Understand what development rules apply.  If you need assistance with this Council's Duty Officer can assist.  For complex matters you should seek professional advice.
  2. Submit all the required documentation as listed in the applicable checklist. It is strongly recommended that you make an appointment with Council's Duty Officer when you are ready to lodge your application.  The Duty Officer will review the application to determine if sufficient information is provided to accept the application. 
  3. Prepare a Statement of Environmental Effects.  Council has an information sheet titled 'How to Prepare a Statement of Environment Effects' located here, to assist you with this.
  4. Complete the 'Development Application Form', all forms are available for download here.
  5. Lodge your application and pay the fees. The fees are based on the estimated cost of works. The cost of works must include both the industry costs of labour and materials. If the cost of works is underestimated, additional fees will be required to be paid and delays with processing of the application will be incurred.
  6. Read the political disclosure requirements and complete the relevant forms if applicable.

Avoid assessment delays

Try to avoid these reasons for assessment delays:

  1. Insufficient information (see below)
  2. Poor quality plans or Statement of Environmental Effects
  3. Poor compliance with development rules
  4. Poor designs having unacceptable impacts
  5. Objections – speak with the owners and occupiers of adjoining properties.
  6. Unsatisfactory impacts on trees
  7. Complexity required in assessment reports

Insufficient information

Requests for additional information are made to 44% of all applications.  Additional information is commonly requested on the following matters:

  1. Lack of consideration of the DCP elements. It is recommended that you use the information sheet titled  'How to prepare a Statement of Environmental Effects'.
  2. Lack of justification for removal of trees. See  Section 5.03 of the DCP Tree Management for which outlines what matters need to considered in the assessment of developments impacted upon by a tree.
  3. Impact on heritage items or conservation areas. Visit our hertitage conservation areas and heritage register pages  for more information.
  4. Investigation of overshadowing impacts. Prepare overshadowing diagrams and ensure that neighbouring properties are not adversely impacted by the proposal.
  5. Lack of investigation into stormwater requirements and potential flooding.  Council's Technical Manual contains details on stormwater and water efficiency.  Section 4.01 Flood management outlines Council's requirements for developments on land that are flood effected.

If your DA does not have the information required it will take longer to process your application.

Have you booked your appointment to lodge your DA?
Call 4974 2000 to book your appointment.

Appointments are 20 minute time slots at Council's City Administration Centre 282 King Street, Newcastle. Please arrive five minutes before the appointment to avoid delays. No fee is charged for this service.

Read our FAQs on the Duty Officer process