Setting up an office | Brisbane City Council

Setting up an office

""If you would like to set up an office, you can use the following information to find out if your project needs planning approval.


Brisbane City Plan 2014 defines an office as the use of a premises for an administrative, secretarial or management service or the practice of a profession, where no goods or materials are made, sold or hired and where the principal activity involves:

  • providing business or professional advice
  • service of goods that are not physically on the premises
  • providing office-based administration for an organisation.

Examples of an office include a bank, real estate agent and an administration building.

It does not include a home based business.

Preferred locations

The City Plan encourages office uses to locate in the Centre zones (Principal centre zoneMajor centre zoneDistrict centre zone or Neighbourhood centre zone).

Office uses are also encouraged in Commercial character buildings.

Planning approval

Not all offices need Brisbane City Council approval.

A PD Online property enquiry can help you determine if the proposal requires Council approval. You can also phone 07 3403 8888 to speak to a town planner. 

If the nature of your business changes over time, for example you change the way you operate, you may need to reconfirm whether a development approval is required or not as a result of these changes.

Building approval

Building approval is separate from planning approval. Licensed private building certifiers or building consultants can provide advice regarding:

  • building work for an existing office or a new office
  • if any building approval is required.

Private building certifiers and building consultants can be found using the Queensland Building and Construction Commission's Find a Local Contractor search.

Other approvals to consider

More information

If your proposed office requires a planning approval or your premises are located within a neighbourhood plan area or overlay, contact Council's Business Hotline 133 BNE (133 263) for advice specific to your situation.

If you wish to find out more, Council's fact sheets Making it easier to do business in Brisbane and Centre, mixed use and specialised centre zone can provide additional information.

19 August 2015