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Shipping containers

You need a permit for the placement and use of shipping containers on domestic and commercial land in Knox.

Domestic properties

A building permit is required to place a shipping container on domestic property for medium or long term use. 

This includes containers used as:

  • a habitable or non-habitable outbuilding
  • a shed
  • storage.

Shipping containers that require a building permit must comply with Part 5 of the Building Regulations and all relevant parts of the National Construction Code Volume 2.

Depending on the planning zone and overlays a planning permit may also be required.

Short term use

Shipping containers placed on site for a short term for transfer of house contents when relocating do not require a building or planning permit. It is recommended that the surrounding neighbours be notified of the proposed timelines.

Storing empty shipping containers

A domestic property cannot be used for the storage of empty shipping containers as this is a commercial use of the land. 

Commercial and industrial properties

You will need a building and planning permit for the use and placement of shipping containers unless the container is:

  • used for the short term loading of goods for shipping purposes, or
  • placed in designated container storage facilities.

The shipping container must comply with all relevant parts of the National Construction Code Volume 1 and be sited in accordance with the conditions of a planning permit.

Permanent placement

In order to obtain a building permit for the permanent placement of a shipping container, you need to submit plans that include a site plan and information about:

  • the footings supporting the structure, and
  • the means of collecting and dispersing the rainwater that will collect on the roof.

A building permit will only be granted in circumstances where there is insufficient space or access on the property.

Need help?

Contact us and we will get back to you.

Or call our Building Services team on 9298 8125.

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