The Construction process

About Permits

TOWN PLANNING/DEVELOPMENT PERMITS.

Storybook services usually include applications for Town Planning/development permits, (not including permit fees which are included in client budgets). Town planning is a difficult process and often takes considerable time, it is therefore important that clients understand that projecting time lines for the process is only possible during the course of the application as the full understanding of issues unfolds and even then are often unreliable as the control of the application is with the Council or Shire. Given the long timelines of applications the Storybook staff always have a large number of jobs to attend to at any time however their aim is always to help get every permit out as soon as possible.

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THE PROCESS

At the completion of working drawings the Storybook permit department prepares the Town Planning application ready for lodging. A copy of the included plans is emailed to the client to confirm that they are happy to proceed with the lodging. This will be the final opportunity to make any changes to plans without causing considerable delays to the process. Changes made after lodgement may also incur additional costs from both Storybook and the Council/Shire.

The Shire/Council will confirm that the application has been received and provide the name of the Town Planner in charge of the processing.

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In due course the Town Planner will respond with questions and instructions relating to the application. These could include additional drawings, details, requests for professional evaluations like an arborists report relating to tree removal or fire assessment etc.., a landscaping plan, questions relating to engineering, colours etc..

Australia is divided into a myriad of shires and councils, each with their own town planning requirements set out in their planning schemes. Accordingly, no two applications are the same. Many of these requirements are subjective and therefore open to interpretation. Individual Town Planners asses each application with their own interpretation as to the form of the application and as to whether everything complies as far as they are concerned. This greyness as to what constitutes a complying application is usually clarified when the first response from the Town Planner is received, however, often as the process progresses after we have already responded to all the initial questions, the Town Planner finds additional things he/she wants clarified and the process continues.

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Storybook’s Permit and drafting departments work together to submit responses back to Council as soon as possible, however, often the pace of the Council is frustratingly slow causing distress for Storybook’s staff and clients alike. As the application progresses Storybook clients can request an update as to when they might expect permit approval. Given the uncertainty of the volume of work required to be done by Storybook’s staff with each application it is a comfort to clients that the town planning or development permit process is included in their Storybook FIXED PRICE service agreement.

Storybook has extensive experience in the area of Town Planning Permit applications and an impressive consistent record of success with the outcomes.

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BUILDING PERMITS.

Once the Town Planning /Development permit has been applied for and the councils positive response is received and any required changes to the plans/information have been resubmitted Storybook will send everything off to the engineers for preparation of all the necessary engineering information for the structure and slab/foundations to the building. When this engineering is received the application for the Building Permit is submitted.

Where possible Storybook prefer to recommend a private building surveyor/certifier to issue the actual Building permit and to provide inspections during the construction process, because they have found that their services are invariably faster than the Councils/Shires. Storybook designs are Custom not mainstream and Town Planners often find it harder to understand our complexity, resulting in them finding it necessary to request additional explanatory information which Storybook readily supply. Our clients will be asked to supply the Owner Builder or Builder registration details and where the application requires the installation of a septic tank or treatment plant waste disposal system they will also be asked for these details because this must be applied for by the licensed plumber who will be doing the installation. The building permit cannot be issued until after the issue of the town planning/development permit.