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Pre-application advice

Knox City Council offers feedback before you lodge your planning permit application.

This can help with your application's success.

Before lodging your permit

Pre-application advice doesn't guarantee your permit will be issued. But it can:

  • tell if the proposed development meets the planning requirements
  • increase the chances of your application being supported by suggesting changes to your design
  • tell you about potential drainage, vegetation or easement issues with the development
  • avoid cost increases and time delays from re-designing plans later.

Before you lodge, we recommend contacting our Planning Services team to help you with pre-application advice for the following application types:

  • multi-unit developments and apartment buildings
  • large commercial and industrial developments
  • change of use applications.

Do your homework

Research policies or guidelines that may apply to your proposed development or site. Check if your proposal meets these requirements.

Talk to a design professional or planning consultant. This is particularly important for large or complex proposals.

Prepare your design

You may need a land surveyor to record the dimensions, slope and conditions of your site and surrounding area. It is important that this occurs early in the process.

At this stage, you need to:

  • prepare plans of your proposal to scale
  • think about what vegetation needs to be protected when you landscape your proposed development
  • prepare a site description if required, to illustrate the characteristics of the site and surrounding area
  • prepare sketch plans of your proposal.

Get pre-application advice

Make your advice request through Council’s online services portal.

You must be registered to use the service. Registrations take up to 24 hours to process.

When you're registered you can submit your request.

Submit your pre-planning advice request

You must upload all plans and supporting documents at the same time. You must also pay an application fee.

Once this is complete, Council will email you to confirm your request.

We aim to give advice on your pre-application in 10 business days after receiving documents and fees. 

We can't refund your pre-application advice fee once you've submitted your planning application.

Supporting documents

Along with your request, you need the following documents for pre-application advice:

  • a full copy of title and details of any encumbrances
  • a summary of what is proposed and responding to any relevant planning scheme policies
  • a clear and properly drafted site layout plan – generally at a scale of 1:100 (including floor plans, contours, and location of trees / vegetation to be retained / removed, easements)
  • a clear and properly drafted elevation plan – generally at a scale of 1:100 (including the location of all doors and windows, as well as, details of the proposed materials, finishes and colours)
  • existing conditions plan (including site analysis and design response) – location of significant vegetation (all trees), all easements and services, and any trees or buildings on neighbouring properties
  • a site analysis plan and design response plan (for medium density housing applications).

Next steps

A team of planners will look at your request.

They'll advise if:

  • you can apply for a planning permit for your request
  • there are issues or problems with your proposal that need to be addressed.

A planning officer will email or meet with you to let you know if the development is appropriate.

This happens about two weeks after we get your request.

Talk to your neighbours

Talk with your neighbours before finalising your plans.

That way if they don't like something you can reach a compromise before you lodge.

Being up-front from the start makes it less likely to run into problems later on.

Finalising your application

Finalise your plans and prepare your application for lodgement.

Think about feedback from Council and your neighbours.

Review your plans and incorporate any changes you think are reasonable.

Prepare any written material, including your neighbourhood and site description and design response.

Follow our checklist to ensure you've got what you need to lodge your application.

Need help?

Contact Planning Services and we will get back to you.

Or call our Planning Services team on 9298 8000.

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