On 19 March 2021 a new planning system came into effect across South Australia with all building and planning development applications assessed under the Planning, Development and Infrastructure Act 2016.

Visit the PlanSA portal for more information.

Building or developing in bushfire prone areas

South Australia has been mapped into  bushfire protection areas, depending on the level of risk.

Level of bushfire risk

In addition, the Ministerial Building Standard MBS 008 - Designated bushfire prone areas - additional requirements identifies bushfire prone areas and the extra safety requirements.

Risk by location

Use ‘overlays’ in the Planning and Design Code to identify these risks for a specific area and the extra requirements needed:

  • Hazards (bushfire – general risk)
  • Hazards (bushfire – medium risk)
  • Hazards (bushfire – high risk)
  • Hazards (bushfire – urban interface) within 500m of Hazards (bushfire – high risk).

Planning and Design Code – overlays

Planning requirements

People who want to develop in these areas must comply with specific planning and building requirements. This includes professionals who assess the development applications.

The planning requirements can include:

  • whether the application needs to be referred to a fire service
  • having dedicated water supplies for fire fighting
  • buffer zones between homes and flammable or combustible vegetation
  • appropriate access roads.

Other bushfire protection areas

Locations that are not designated as bushfire prone must also be protected from bushfire. These areas are identified in the code:

  • Hazards (bushfire – outback)
  • Hazards (bushfire – regional)
  • Hazards (bushfire – urban interface)

Bushfire recovery - planning and building approvals

People affected by bushfires can ask for a streamlined assessment and faster approval to help them repair or build a new home and outbuildings damaged in bushfires.

Find out more about measures in place to assist with bushfire recovery.

Construction requirements

The construction requirements for building in bushfire protection areas are further detailed in the Building Code of Australia.

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Page last updated 23 November 2022

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