More SEQ Councils on target to reduce development assessment timeframes

30 / May / 2011 | News

Scenic Rim, Sunshine Coast and Toowoomba are the latest SEQ Councils to launch the Target 5 Days project, an initiative aimed at reducing residential development assessment timeframes to improve housing affordability.

Scenic Rim, Sunshine Coast and Toowoomba have joined the growing list of SEQ Councils offering a five day development assessment turnaround for most low-risk residential applications, and a speedier assessment process for more complex residential developments.

Council of Mayors (SEQ) Chairman Councillor Graham Quirk said SEQ Councils are working hard to improve housing affordability across the region and are encouraging the development industry to play their part.

“SEQ Councils are drastically reducing the time it takes to approve a residential development and as we all know time is money when it comes to building,” Cr Quirk said.

“We encourage the development industry to start using the new residential application kits to tap into time and financial savings on offer through the Target 5 Days project.

“The onus is now on the development industry to embrace these changes, and ensure any savings are passed directly onto home-buyers.”

Council of Mayors (SEQ) Deputy Chairman Councillor Bob Abbot said Sunshine Coast Regional Council is committed to the continuous improvement of its development assessment processes.

“The Target 5 Days project will reduce the average assessment time for a residential application by 75 per cent,” said Cr Abbot.

“This will be a huge advantage to the Sunshine Coast community in our fight against the rising cost of housing.”

SEQ Councils now have streamlined residential application kits available online or via council customer service centres to assist applicants in accessing the five day assessment turnaround.

Toowoomba Regional Council Mayor Peter Taylor said Target 5 Days currently focuses on duplex and small multiple unit developments but work had already commenced on the next phase of the project.

“Target 5 Days is the first step in an ongoing journey of planning reform for SEQ Councils,” Cr Taylor said.

“Toowoomba Regional Council is already collaborating with the region to improve the processes of other development use-types, such as subdivisions.”

The second stage of the Target 5 Days project, to be completed by 30 June 2011, will streamline the application and assessment process for subdivisions, also known as the reconfiguration of a lot.

An advertising campaign, aimed at promoting the five day assessment turnaround to both professional and non-professional applicants, will run from May to December 2011.

The Target 5 Days project is an initiative of the Council of Mayors (SEQ), and supported by the Australian Government’s Housing Affordability Fund.