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Planning and building

The Gold Coast is a vibrant and attractive city. We are working hard to maintain our enviable lifestyle and ensure our city continues to thrive in a sustainable way.

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Building and construction COVID–19 economic stimulus incentives

Let’s keep our city moving

The City of Gold Coast remains committed to ‘keeping our city moving’ and recovering from the economic impacts of COVID-19. The City is proposing a range of incentives which have been designed to stimulate new building and construction work, particularly aimed at smaller-scale projects. The City also remains committed to maintaining high levels of customer service and delivering faster, more efficient assessment of development applications.

Who are the incentives for?

It is anticipated that these incentives will directly provide assistance to the greater development industry, from ‘mum and dad’ developers through to larger-sized companies and will alleviate the impacts of COVID-19 to the Gold Coast building and construction industry.

Tell me more about are the incentives?

To assist, the City is offering the following:

City incentive Detail Period

Implementation of the Express DA (Express Development Application)

50% fee reduction for 12 months

Express DA will replace the current RiskSmart process and has been extended to include additional application types.

Express DA will facilitate a streamlined assessment and decision making process for small scale applications which are compliant with the City Plan.

50% fee reduction for 12-month period to
27 October 2021

Referral Agency Applications (RAA)

50% fee reduction for 12 months

RAA’s are for small scale domestic projects where the proposal exceeds the nominated setbacks requirements.

Includes RAA and RAA Express applications (i.e.) new dwelling houses, extensions to dwelling houses including detached sheds, gatehouses and carports.

50% fee reduction for 12-month period to
1 October 2021

Applications for change of use for existing business wanting to modify their operations due to impact of COVID-19 where no building work or alterations to the building are required.

Fees waived until 30 December 2020.

An example where this may apply is a restaurant to a shop or takeaway services use, where the business has had to evolve as a result of COVID-19 impacts. This would be facilitated through a minor change application.

Fees waived until
30 December 2020

Pre-lodgement meeting requests

Fees waived until 30 June 2021.

Pre-lodgement meeting fees will be waived but will still follow City’s normal pre-lodgement process, with minutes provided to the applicant shortly after the conclusion of the meeting

Fees waived until
30 June 2021

Faster assessment timeframes for a ‘Request to change a development approval

City officers will streamline the assessment process for suitable minor change applications, where only slight changes to the drawings and/or conditions of an existing development approval are required.

Ongoing customer service commitment

Planning Enquiries Centre (PEC)

PEC service will be maintained 8am to 5pm Monday to Friday.

Cityl’s PEC service provides prompt general planning advice from qualified town planners to anyone intending to undertake a development project.

Ongoing customer service commitment

Maintaining the City’s existing Major Assessment Service

Major Assessment Service Team places a strong emphasis on working with applicants to resolve key planning and development issues prior to lodgement for major developments within the city.

Ongoing customer service commitment

Bonding and Plan Sealing

No prescribed minimum value for Performance Bonds and Uncompleted Works Bonds will continue to be available to all projects – large or small.

Streamlined process of sealing of survey plans will be maintained by the dedicated Plan Sealing team.

Ongoing customer service commitment

Want to know more?

For further information on the City of Gold Coast building and bonstruction development COVID-19 stimulus incentives, please contact the Planning Enquires Centre (PEC) on 07 5582 8708 or


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