Brisbane Green Buildings Incentive Policy

Brisbane City Council recognises the benefits of well-designed, green and energy efficient buildings, which include positive impacts to the environment, economy and the health and wellbeing of our community. To encourage the design of greener and more energy efficient buildings across Brisbane, Council has introduced the Brisbane Green Buildings Incentive Policy, aligning with our vision of a world class, design-led city

Applications for the Brisbane Green Buildings Incentive Policy are now open.

Under the incentive, Council will provide a financial payment equivalent to 50 per cent of infrastructure charges paid for Council networks to buildings that meet criteria detailed below.

The incentive demonstrates Council’s commitment to the Brisbane’s Future Blueprint long‑term goal of ensuring best practice design that complements the character of Brisbane while supporting the recovery of the building and construction industry.

Download the:

The Brisbane Green Buildings Incentive Policy is currently under review with the intent to extend the request and payment timeframes of the policy for an additional 12 months, which would result in the following changes:

  • request lodgement phase end-date extended to 31 December 2024
  • request payment phase end-date extended to 30 June 2025.

Note, there are no proposed changes to the policy applying to development applications approved between 1 July 2020 and 30 June 2022.

For more information about the policy and/or the proposed changes, you can:


The incentive is available for both residential and commercial office buildings. The specific requirements for each building type are set out below. Please note that an applicant will only be able to apply for the incentive following the construction/commencement of use of the building, as the design-based criteria will  be certified based on the ‘as built’ stage.

A mixed-use building will be deemed eligible under the residential criteria if a component of the building is for residential purposes. A mixed-use building will be deemed eligible under the commercial criteria if the eligible commercial use makes up the majority of the building.

Applicants should review the:

Applicants should also download the assessment methodology Council will use to assess applications:

Eligible developments need to:

  • have a development application approved between 1 July 2020 and 30 June 2022. Note, this may also include a change application where at the time the change application is approved by Council the construction for the development has not commenced
  • lodge a request for the incentive between 1 July 2022 and 31 December 2023 
  • pay or otherwise satisfy the levied charge for the project 
  • have a development approval in place under the Planning Act 2016 where an infrastructure charges notice has been given
  • be a minimum of three storeys in height 
  • have no development offences committed in relation to the development under the Planning Act 2016.

In addition:

  • Residential buildings must meet one of the below criteria. 
  • Commercial office buildings must achieve criteria three, four, and five
  • Where a sufficient level of compliance has been achieved, a combination of the below may be considered at Council’s discretion in extenuating circumstances.
Criteria Overview Supporting information

Criteria 1

5-star Green star rating from the Green Building Council Australia

A minimum of 5-star rating is to be achieved using the “as built” certification.

While there are other rating tools, such as “communities”, “interiors” and “performance”, applicants will need to be certified “as built” 5-star. 

Visit the Green Building Council Australia website.

Criteria 2

UDIA Envirodevelopment six leaf certification

For residential developments three to 15 storeys in height. 

Visit the Envirodevelopment website.

Criteria 3

Compliance with the Buildings that Breathe Design Guide

For buildings:

  • three to seven storeys, the project must comply with 15 sub-elements
  • eight to 15 storeys, the project must comply with 20 sub-elements
  • over 15 storeys, the project must comply with 25 sub-elements.

Criteria 4

Carbon neutral certification

Certification must be achieved against the Climate Active Carbon Neutral Standard for Buildings. For commercial uses, the building must have at least the “base Building operation” certification, and residential building must achieve “whole building operation” certification.

While other types of certification are given e.g. for events, organisations and precincts, applicants will need to be certified against the building standard.

Visit the Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources website.

Criteria 5

Achieve a minimum green plot ratio

Differences apply across residential vs commercial buildings. View the policy document for more information. 

Review the:

How to apply

Read the supporting information for the criteria you wish to apply for and prepare the necessary documentation. Applications are open from 1 July 2022 to 31 December 2023. Please note that a lodgement fee applies. For further details refer to the Schedule of Fees and Charges in Council's Budget documents.

Lodge your application

Council may advise on the eligibility of proposed projects for the Brisbane Green Buildings Incentive by providing prelodgement advice on the design. However, any advice provided by Council is for guidance purposes only.

Final approval is subject to Council endorsement.

Additional considerations for change applications

A change application may also be eligible for the Brisbane Green Buildings Incentive Policy if construction for the development has not commenced at the time the change application is approved.

Construction will be considered to have commenced if actions or activities have occurred specifically to carry out the approved development. Examples include earthworks to dig a basement in accordance with an approval, establishment of footings and foundations, materials, equipment and structures on site for the purpose of the development.

Site preparation activities such as clearing and demolition works associated with ceasing the existing use of the premises (i.e. works that could typically be carried out without reliance on development approval or change application) may occur without making the development ineligible for the Brisbane Green Buildings Incentive Policy.

More information

For more information:

Last updated: 13 April 2023

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