Having your say about a proposed development application

If you have been notified of a proposed development you can make a representation in support of, or in opposition to, an application. Representations must be made in writing and must set out your case for supporting or opposing the proposed development.

How to prepare a representation

To be effective your representation should only raise matters addressed in the council's development plan as the proposed development can only be assessed against this plan. The representation must give valid reasons for the objection.

A written representation should include:
  • your name, address and the date
  • the address of the proposed development and the development assessment number
  • concerns with the proposed development
  • how the proposed development affects your property or area
  • if you are objecting to the proposed development, include the reasons why planning approval should not be granted
  • reference to the development plan.
  • what changes, alterations or conditions of approval that could be considered to help resolve your concerns

The representation can be in the form of a letter, report, dot points or your council may have a standard form for you to fill out. Some valid concerns with a development may be:

  • type of land use is not appropriate
  • appearance or character
  • overshadowing - such as shadows cast by the proposed building onto the neighbour's back yard or windows
  • overlooking - such as potential views from upstairs windows and balconies into the neighbour's back yard or windows
  • traffic generated
  • proposed development is at odds with the development plan.

Representations must be lodged with council within 10 business days of the date of the notice.

Getting help with your representation

To prepare the most effective representation, you can engage the services of a planning consultant. A planning consultant can undertake a review of the development plan and the proposed development and help identify and explain those planning issues to include in a representation.

Find a planning consultant by visiting the Planning Institute of Australia website. They can also be found in the yellow pages under town planning.

Related information

Other websites

State Commission Assessment Panel
PlanSA portal


Development Act 1993

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Page last updated 18 August 2020

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Attorney-General's Department - PLUS
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