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Development Applications

A development application is a request made to a Council to undertake works including home building and renovation, land subdivision and building-use alteration.

Development includes the use or subdivision of land, the erection of a building, the undertaking of work, or demolition of a building under the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979.

All development requires prior development consent from Hurstville City Council, unless it is:

Importance of good development plans

You are more likely to receive development consent if your proposal considers Council’s planning rules, and is based on thorough site analysis and strong design principles.

The early identification of site constraints is necessary:

  • Where will the driveway go? Are there street trees, power or light poles, stormwater pipes or pits, telstra pits or other public infrastructure in the way?

Tip - Get approval for the driveway crossing from Council before the detailed building and parking design proceeds.

  • Where will roof and surface stormwater go?  If the site falls away from the road is there an easement system to connect to?

Tip - Speak to your neighbours about getting any easement early in the design process if stormwater is required to be disposed through down hill properties.

  • Is the site flood affected or subject to over land flows of stormwater?

Tips - If there is a history of the site being affected speak with us about the need for a flood study.

  • Where will the buildings and site works go? Are trees or other environmentally sensitive site attributes an issue? Do you need prior approval to remove trees?

Tip - Design to retain and protect significant trees and riparian zones.

  • Is the site potentially contaminated?

Tip - Make early investigations of previous site uses that may have resulted in contamination.

  • Is the site affected by Acid Sulphate Soils?

Tip - Provide a Acid Sulphate Soils Management Plan if affected by acid sulphate soils.

  • Is the site affected by Bush Fires?

Tip -  Design to bush fire standards if in a Bush Fire affected area.

  • Is the site affected by easements or sewer mains?

Tip - Design to comply with title restrictions and clear of Sydney Water sewer mains.

This is not an extensive list of all possible constraints see our advice: 5 Steps to prepare a DA.

It is recommended that you consult with neighbours and other people and organisations which may be affected by your development in the planning process. This will ensure any issues are identified and addressed in the early stages. Making a development application for a large project can be a complex process and may require the expertise of planners, architects and other specialists.

Land owner's consent

Only the owner(s) of the land proposed to be developed, or a person with the owner's written consent, can lodge a development application.

When land and property, such as a unit block, is owned by a number of people under a strata scheme, the ‘owner’ is the scheme owners' corporation, under the Strata Schemes Management Act 1996. In such a case, the consent of the owners' corporation is necessary for works on common property.

Development assessment is a complex process

The submission and assessment of development applications is a complex process because it involves examining the suitability of your building works, along with numerous other factors, including:

  • submissions
  • stormwater and drainage disposal
  • flooding potential
  • land contamination
  • presence of acid sulphate soils
  • site suitability
  • geotechnical and construction impacts
  • heritage conservation
  • species conservation.

Design your proposal to address all site constraints. General advice:

More information

Exempt Development – minor development work that does not require approval subject to certain requirement being satisfied.
Development applications and consents - advice on assessing the potential impact of proposed developments, from the Environmental Defender's Office of NSW. 

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