Development Applications 

Development Approval is a legal document that provides permission for specified use or development to occur on a particular piece of land. It is obtained by submitting a Development Application to us, which we asses against our Town Planning Scheme, Residential Design Codes (R-Codes) and other relevant legislation and policies.

Find out the process of lodging a development application.

Step 1 – Identify your property attributes

Before completing your Development Application (DA), you will need to know: 

  • Your property’s ‘zoning’
  • Lot area in sqm
  • If your property is:
    • In a flood prone area
    • In a bushfire prone area
    • Heritage listed
    • Within Southern Palusplain area 
    • Potentially impacted by traffic or rail noise

Get this information from Intramaps

Step 2 - Determine whether development approval is required

Development approval may be required for the following reasons:

  • Land use

The Shire’s Local Planning Scheme defines the various land uses. There are also different levels of permissibility established under the zoning table of the Local Planning Scheme, dependent on the zoning of the land. 

As some land uses may not be compatible with each other, the zoning table provides different permissibility based on the zoning of the land.

For example, having an industry outlet next door to your house may result in noise, traffic and other impacts on you. Likewise, a house within an industrial area may create safety concerns.

  • Buildings and works (proposed developments) 

A DA is not always required for buildings and works in residential areas (although you may still need a building permit).

For example, standards established through the Planning Framework allow many of the following buildings and structures to be built without needing a DA: 

  • Single house/dwelling.
  • Extension of a single house (including patio, carport, swimming pool, garage and verandah).
  • Ancillary accommodation.
  • Sheds/outbuildings.

If any of these are located within a flood prone area, heritage area or you’re seeking to vary a standard of the Planning Framework, then you’ll need a DA.

Note: A Building Permit may still be required, even if your proposed development and/or land use is exempt from development approval. Contact the Building Team for further information.

Consult the Planning Framework relevant to your development type.

Step 3 - Complete the Development Application Form

Download and complete the Development Application Form

Step 4 - Gather supporting documents

You will need to provide the following alongside your application form: 

  • A written outline of the proposal and justification for any variations to the development requirements. 
  • Planning application fee payment.
  • Completed checklist (found within the form).
  • A copy of site plans, floor plan and elevations.

Step 5 - Submit your application

Your full application (including a complete form and supporting documents) can be submitted: 

In person: Administration Office at 1915 Pinjarra Road, Pinjarra

Post: PO Box 21, Pinjarra, WA, 6208 


Step 6 - Make payment 

If you are submitting your application in person, please bring payment with you.

If you are submitting your application electronically, we will contact you to arrange payment once your application has been registered. 

Planning Fees and Charges

Step 7 - Shire assessment 

At this stage, we will: 

  • Let you know we've received your application.
  • Provide contact details of the officer dealing with your application, the results of a preliminary assessment, and a likely decision date.
  • Assess the application and contact you if modified plans or additional supporting information is needed. 
  • Review it against our Planning Framework.
  • Refer to any internal or external stakeholders that will be potentially impacted by the proposed DA.
  • Advertise the proposed DA to potentially impacted community members and request their feedback.

Step 8 - Decision made

Most applications will be finalised within 60 days, or 90 days if public consultation is required.

The majority are determined by the Planning Team, however some are determined by Council, Western Australian Planning Commission (WAPC), Joint Development Assessment Panel (JDAP) or State Development Assessment Unit (SDAU). 

We’ll let you know the outcome as well as any conditions of approval or reasons for refusal, along with a set of endorsed plans.

Your DA will either be approved with no conditions, approved with conditions, or refused.

Approval (no conditions)

Once your DA is approved, a Building Permit may still be required before construction can begin. Contact the Building Team for further information.

DA approval will generally lapse if the development and/or land use has not been completed or substantially commenced within two years.

Approval (with conditions)

We will provide you with any conditions you must meet. These may need to be carried out prior to works occurring, prior to occupying or another specified timing. A Building Permit may still be required before construction can begin. Contact the Building Team for further information.


Your DA may be refused if it doesn’t meet requirements within the Shire’s Planning Framework. If this happens, and you think the decision is incorrect, you have the opportunity to appeal. 

This can be done by lodging the application for review with the State Administrative Tribunal within 28 days of the decision date, with a copy of the application provided to us.

Frequently asked questions

What if I am dissatisfied with an outcome?

If you are dissatisfied with a condition of approval or a decision to refuse your application, there may be a right to apply for a review of the decision.

The application for review must be lodged with the State Administrative Tribunal within 28 days of the decision date, with a copy of the application provided to us. 

How long does development approval last?

The approval will generally lapse, if the development and/or land use has not been completed or substantially commenced within two years of the date of the approval.

In relation to a dwelling, substantially commenced means the slab has been laid and brickwork is up to plate height.

Development approval also runs with the land. For example, if a landowner was granted approval for a patio but didn’t build it before selling the house, the new owner can construct the patio as per the approved plans provided it is within the expiry date of the approval.

When might an application be referred to a Development Assessment Panel? 

Applications for proposed developments valued over $10 million are assessed and determined by the Metropolitan South West Development Assessment Panel (DAP).

Each DAP consists of five panel members - three specialist members and two local government councillors.

In circumstances where applications have a value of between $2 million and $10 million, applicants are able to choose whether the application is to be assessed and determined by the DAP, Council or the Shire (under delegated authority).