Planning Act 2016 impacts on Council | Brisbane City Council

Planning Act 2016 impacts on Council

Council has amended its local planning scheme Brisbane City Plan 2014 (City Plan) to align with the new Queensland Government legislation Planning Act 2016 (Planning Act), which came into effect on 3 July 2017.

Changes to City Plan

Council continues to focus on well-planned development through the consultative neighbourhood planning approach guided by Brisbane’s CityShape strategic framework.

There has been no changes to Council’s vision for positive on-the-ground development outcomes and residents can access detailed reasoning behind development approvals through Council’s transparent online system PD Online

Terminology changes across City Plan As these have occurred throughout the scheme they may give the appearance of greater change. 
Tables of assessment In general, the levels of assessment and the assessment criteria have not changed. The loss of compliance assessment is the exception but this does not have a significant impact and can be readily addressed though code assessment or condition compliance.
Zone codes No change in policy intent. Clarity has been maintained while complying with new drafting rules.
Development codes Codes include relevant policy context from the Strategic Framework where necessary to maintain consistency in their application and in the development outcomes. 
Definitions New definitions have been accommodated without changing planning intent for those uses.

Changes to development assessment

Council has updated its development assessment systems, processes and people in line with the new legislation and to communicate changes with its key development industry customers.

Changes the development industry will notice include:

  • Alignment of terminology, definitions and zone purposes across City Plan to align with the new Planning Act. (These changes do not change the intent of City Plan.)
  • New process and assessment timeframes in Development Services that align with Planning Act statutory requirements.
  • Employment of the new features of Planning Act and associated regulations, such as:
    • Exemption Certificates where appropriate and consistent with community expectations and while maintaining planning transparency and certainty
    • Section 82 approvals for changes, other than minor changes, to a development application.

Key terms changed with new legislation

Current term Replaced by
the Sustainable Planning Act 2009/SPA the Planning Act 2016
the Sustainable Planning Regulation 2009 the Planning Regulation 2017
Priority infrastructure plan/PIP Local Government Infrastructure Plan/LGIP
assessment criteria assessment benchmarks
levels of assessment

categories of development and assessment


categories of assessment (when only referring to code or impact assessment) 


categories of development (where referring to whether prohibited, assessable or accepted development)

exempt development accepted development
self-assessable development accepted development, subject to compliance with identified requirements
self-assessable acceptable outcomes all identified acceptable outcomes

For more information about Queensland Government planning reform and the new state planning legislation visit the Queensland Government Planning Reform

20 March 2019