Media Archive / Government’s Council League Table will provide greater transparency

Government’s Council League Table will provide greater transparency

UDIA NSW has welcomed the announcement by the Minister for Planning & Public Spaces Paul Scully and the Minister for Local Government Ron Hoenig on the introduction of a new ‘league table’ to monitor the performance of councils and state agencies in assessing development applications (DA) but has cautioned this data may only tell part of the story.

“We see today’s announcement as a great start in providing greater transparency on the development approval process. It will shine a light on timeframes around the lodgement, acceptance and approval of development applications. However, it may only tell part of the story because we are increasingly seeing more and more delays in the period following DA approval, to the time it takes to start building,” said UDIA NSW CEO Stuart Ayres.

UDIA is encouraging the Government to expand the dashboard to also include the time it takes to move from approval to the issuance of a construction certificate (CC). This is because DAs are increasingly being approved with a significant number of conditions requiring additional approvals.

Many UDIA members are reporting the average time to move from approval to construction can be anywhere from 6-8 months while they negotiate approvals with water, power, sewer and roads access and other government agencies.

“While it is important to track council performance on DA approval timeframes, we must have a clearer understanding of the time it is taking to actually get projects under construction.”

“We don’t want proposals getting through the development application front door only to find themselves in a deeper, darker waiting room,” said Stuart Ayres.

UDIA also encourages the Government to further break down the data to show how long specific types of residential development take to approve.

“In the middle of a housing crisis, we can’t be lumping the approval timeframes for a residential tower of 100 apartments or a 500 homes subdivision in the same category as the approval of a pool fence or a minor house improvement,” he said.

“When our industry can understand how long the complex DAs, which will deliver a large number of homes, are taking to approve we can all focus our efforts on fast tracking the time it takes to get these projects approved and start building the urgently needed housing for the people of NSW,” said Stuart Ayres.

Media Enquiries: Deanna Lane