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How to obtain planning approval

Essentially the planning approval process in South Australia operates under 8049 pages of the Planning and Design Code which has approximately 70 zones each having separate overlays and numerous local technical and numeric variations.

The assessment process is made more complicated by terminology including desired ourcomes, performance outcomes and deemed to satisfy provisions.

Stated goals of the system are that it will deliver a faster, cheaper, more accessible and easier to navigate planning system. This is open to question.

All applications must now be lodged electronically through an online Portal. The application is subject to a pre-lodgement verification stage where applicants may be required to provide additional information.

There is a limited statutory time frame for a authority assessment which may include public notification and an opportunity for registration of objections.

It is essential that all applications are carefully considered and documented prior to lodgement.

Whereas under the repealed Planning and Development Act it was possible for anyone to prepare some sort of planning application and negotiate when necessary with council planners under the new Planning, Development and Infrastructure Act this approach is not

In many cases a building approval is required in addition to a planning approval. Lodgement of building approval documentation is still required through the Portal but private certifiers can be engaged as an alternative to council building approval staff.

In summary it is recommended that professional assistance is sought where approval for development is required.