You need Council approval for work on public land
Consent is required for any works or activities in a public reserve, public road way or footpath (nature strip). Section 138 of the NSW Roads Act requires that all activities undertaken within Council's road reserve be approved by Council prior to the activities being undertaken. Council retains the right to revoke any approval, in writing, to the applicant.
You must pay for any approved work
Property owners are liable for all costs associated with the construction, maintenance and repair of vehicle crossing between the road pavement and boundary line of private property, under the Roads Act 1993.
You must not remove a street tree without Council approval - fines apply
It illegal to remove or damage a street Tree (Council Asset) under the Roads Act 1993.
Legal penalties apply if a Council asset that includes street trees is removed unless the removal is approved by Council and undertaken by Council’s authorised contractor.
Certifier obligation to get all approvals before issuing consent
All permits, approvals or development consents required to facilitate the development must be obtained before a Complying Development Certificate is issued by a certifier. This means that if there is a Council asset that includes a street tree is in a location where you would like to install a driveway, either:
a) relocate the driveway and avoid the street tree (Council asset) to be compliant with Council’s requirements under the Driveway (Vehicular Crossing) Specification, or
b) submit a Development Application to seek consent for the proposed development where removal of the street tree (Council asset) will be considered.
Note: Under the provisions of the State Environmental Planning Policy (Exempt and Complying Codes) 2008, often referred to as the Codes SEPP, Complying Development Certificates (CDC) are issued under certain conditions and requirements that must be met.
What is a driveway/vehicle crossing?
A driveway is a formed (eg. concrete) or unformed (eg. gravel) vehicle crossing form the front boundary of private property across a road reserve to the kerb and guttering. It consists of two principal parts, the ‘layback’, which is the dip in the kerb and guttering that allows a vehicle to cross, and the ‘crossover’, the section which runs from the kerb and guttering to the property boundary.
How do I apply to build a driveway?
Fairfield City Council has adopted a 2 stage system for all driveway applications:
The first stage considers the appropriateness of the proposed driveway/vehicle crossings location. Once Council has assessed the application, if the proposed location is considered appropriate, Council will issue a ‘Notice of Location Authorisation’. Please note, this IS NOT an approval to build the driveway/vehicle crossing. It is only an acknowledgement that the proposed location is suitable for a driveway/vehicle crossing.
Under the code State Environmental Planning Policy (Exempt and Complying Development Codes) 2008, you are required to get approval for your driveway construction before the issue of your Complying Development Certificate. A successful Stage 1 Application gives this approval.
Stage 1: Location Authority Application Form
After you have read and understood the requirement for building a driveway, view the Location Authority Application Form here.
Location Assessment Application Form(PDF, 632KB)
The second stage of the process comes when you are ready to construct the vehicular crossing. The second application, the ‘Construction Application’ is to be lodged with Council. This application deals with the actual construction of the vehicular crossing. This is to insure that it is built in a way which is fit for purpose and complies with Council’s specifications. As part of this process, two (2) inspections are built into it. These are the ‘Formwork Inspection’ and ‘Final Inspection.’ The Formwork Inspection ensures correct location, levels, size and that the appropriate reinforcing is installed PRIOR to the concrete being poured. This inspection is to insure it is compliant with requirements. Vehicular crossings that are not compliant will be requested for removal. Any of those which have un-authorised can incur legal penalties.
Final inspection is carried out after the formwork has been approved and concrete pour been undertaken. If everything has been done to Council standards, a council officer will sent an approved inspection slip. If the driveway is found to non – compliant, the officer will request the driveway to be removed and done properly to Council’s standards.
The final inspection for driveways is not a Road Reserve Clearance Certificate. These are two completely different things as the Road Reserve Clearance Certificate covers all the Council’s assets found on the Council’s road reserve e.g. footpath; kerb and gutter etc. You may be required to get a Road Reserve Clearance Certificate before the issue of Occupation Certificate as part of your CDC/DA.
Stage 2: Construction Authority Application Form
After you have read and understood the requirement for building a driveway, view the Construction Authority Application Form here.
Vehicular Crossing Application Form(PDF, 857KB)
Driveway Policy and Requirements
+ Fairfield City Council Drive (Vehicular Crossing) Policy(PDF, 202KB)
+ Fairfield City Council Driveway (Vehicular Crossing) Specifications(PDF, 410KB)
Under the Roads Act 1993, there are a number of restrictions to the location of a vehicle crossing in relation to traffic conditions and the roadway the crossing will enter. When assessing an application for a driveway/vehicle crossing, Council must consider a number of factors including, the location of the proposed crossing relative to traffic management features such as traffic lights, pedestrian crossings, traffic islands or median strips and traffic calming devices such as speed humps or chicanes.
In some instances, an application will require consent from Transport for NSW before Council can authorise the driveway. Similarly, if the proposed driveway is located on a State controlled road, Transport for NSW authorisation is required before Council can consider the application. Click here to see if your property is on a state road. NSW Road Network Classifications
Internal Driveways must be installed in accordance with an approved development consent or complying development consent.
In circumstances where a development consent or a complying development certificate has not been obtained, the driveway must be constructed in accordance with the requirements detailed in State Environmental Planning Policy (Exempt and Complying Development Codes) 2008, Subdivision 14, Driveways and hardstand space.
Note: Any non-compliances with the above requirements may result in Council issuing an order under the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act, 1979 requiring you to comply with direction to remove portions of the unauthorised concrete hardstand located at the premises.
Why are there 2 stages?
Fairfield City has adopted a 2 stage system to provide better service to ratepayers. For owner/residents, Stage 1 will provide you with the scope for works that will need to be quoted for when planning to proceed to stage 2. This means that the concreter will understand and accordingly quote for the works Council requires.
For Developers and Certifiers, Stage 1 will provide you with the conditional section 138 approval you need under the Roads Act 1993 to progress your project. This conditional approval will be valid for the duration of the DA/CDC.
Can Council pay for it?
Under the Roads Act 1993, property owners are liable for all costs associated with the construction, maintenance and repair of vehicle crossing between the road pavement and boundary line of private property. Council cannot use ratepayer money to benefit one ratepayer and is unable to undertake repair work for residents.
Fairfield City Council’s Driveway Policy governs the minimum and maximum widths for all driveways,
- Minimum width: 2.5m at property boundary and 3.0m at the kerb
- Single Car Garage: Maximum Width 3.0m at property boundary
- Two Car Garage: 4.5m at the property boundary
- Three Car Garage: 5.5m at the property boundary
- Commercial: Assessment will be based on submission of a swept path analysis by the applicant
- Rural: Subject to Vehicular Crossing Policy, AS2890.1 and Council’s Development Control Plan
Fairfield City Council’s Driveway Policy governs the number of driveways allowable at a property. No driveways are allowed for secondary dwellings (granny flats, etc)
Driveway/vehicle crossings that are not compliant can be ordered to be removed and those which do not have authorisation can incur legal penalties.
What if there is a tree on the Council Road Reserve where I want to put a driveway?
Under the provisions of the State Environmental Planning Policy (Exempt and Complying Codes) 2008, often referred to as the Codes SEPP and under which CDC (Complying Development Consents) are issued, ALL permits, approvals or development consents required to facilitate the development must be obtained PRIOR to the CDC being issued. This means that if there is a Council Asset (Street Tree) in a location where you would like to install a driveway, either:
c.) the driveway is relocated to be compliant with Council’s requirements under the Driveway (Vehicular Crossing) Specification,
d.) you need to lodge a Development Application to seek consent for the proposed development where removal of the tree will be considered.