Have your say on development applications
Anyone can formally submit comments on certain development applications, to support or oppose development. Council calls these comments ‘submissions’. Council welcomes submissions and considers it is important for you to have your say.
- what applications can I make a submission on?
- submissions are not confidential
- submissions must be properly made
- grounds for a submission
- getting help with your submission
- preferred lodgement methods
- what happens after I lodge my submission?
Submissions can be made on the following types of development applications, which are advertised for feedback:
- code notifiable
- impact assessable – generally appropriate
- impact assessable – generally inappropriate
You will see a sign on the property, a notice in a local newspaper and registered letters will be sent to all adjoining land owners. The closing date for submissions will be clearly stated on these materials, and you must lodge the submission by the closing date.
Before preparing your submission you need to see the application and plans. The most convenient way to view a development application is via PD Online. All development applications can be accessed by any person.
Council does not consider anonymous submissions, and all properly made submissions are published on PD Online for viewing along with the development application. Once an application has been decided, the name and address of all submitters is provided to the applicant and is available to other submitters.
By using Council’s preferred lodgement methods, you have the opportunity to ensure your personal details are not published online during the application assessment phase. Submissions lodged in other ways will generally be published online in their entirety, including name, address and signature.
Only submissions that are properly made must be considered when assessing an application. To be properly made, a submission must:
- be in writing and signed by each person who made the submission; or be made electronically
- include the name and address of each person who is making the submission
- state what aspects of the plan or proposed development you support or oppose and why
- be received by Council before the closing date for submissions
Lodging a submission by Council’s preferred lodgement methods will help to ensure it is properly made.
Council needs to understand the reasons behind your submission. For example, if you think the type of development proposed for your area is unsuitable, you need to say why it is unsuitable, not simply that you don't like it.
It is important to focus on planning issues such as:
- whether the proposed use is consistent with the intent for the area as expressed in City Plan
- whether the scale and design of the proposed development is compatible with surrounding development
- how the development addresses the street and interfaces with adjoining properties
- any potential traffic and car parking issues associated with the development
- hours of operation (for commercial activities)
- how the development may impact on drainage patterns in the area
- how the development fits with any objective of the planning scheme to protect and enhance the natural environment
Many submitters prepare their own submission. However, some engage the services of a planning consultant to help prepare an effective submission. A planning consultant can undertake a review of the City Plan and the proposed development and help identify and explain the most relevant issues to include in a submission. You can find a planning consultant by visiting the Planning Institute of Australia website.
You can save time and have the option to keep your personal details from being published online during the application assessment phase by lodging a submission via PD Online.
You can also keep your personal details from being published online during the application assessment stage by using the Development Application Submission Form (PDF - 195kb). This form can be submitted in person at any Regional Business Centre or by mail:
Brisbane City Council
GPO Box 1434
Council will acknowledge receipt of the submission in writing, within approximately one week.
Viewing or changing submissions
You can check the status of an application and view your submission and others at any time by searching for it via PD Online. It is possible to amend or revise your submission before the closing date for submissions and you can withdraw your submission up until Council makes its final decision.
Council considers all submissions when assessing a development application, and will advise the decision made to:
- everyone who wrote a submission; or
- the first person on the list of ‘submitters’ if the submission was submitted by several people
This advice will occur following the applicant’s appeal period of 20 business days after the decision.
Submitters have the legal right to appeal Council’s decision on an impact assessable application through the Planning & Environment Court. Council advises submitters in writing about the time period for an appeal to be submitted.