Overview of the planning process

Do you want to apply for a planning permit? Learn about the process, from preparing and lodging your application, to how we make our decisions.

Overview of the planning process

Planning relates to how we use and develop land. We make most planning decisions that affect Darebin, while considering the impact on community, environment and everyday life.

A planning decision could affect public transport, a shopping centre expansion or the location of a public park. We may also have to decide whether to support a new use or development, such as two buildings on residential land or a new restaurant in a commercial area.

If we support a new use or development, we issue a planning permit with conditions. If we oppose a development, we state the grounds for our decision.

Our Statutory Planning team mostly assesses planning permit applications and provides information and advice about planning controls.

Before you make a submission

  • Download a Planning Property Report to find out the planning requirements, including the zone and any overlays.
  • Look at the Darebin Planning Scheme to confirm if you need a planning permit.
  • Visit the VicSmart website to find out if your proposal is eligible for the VicSmart fast-track process.
  • Look at our checklist to confirm what you may need to provide with an application.
  • Prepare initial plans for your proposal.
  • Discuss plans with your neighbours.
  • Consider getting advice from a professional planning consultant.
  • Request a pre-application meeting with one of our planners.
  • We encourage you to include sustainable design elements in your development. Visit our Sustainable Darebin page to find out more.
  • Contact us if you have any questions.

Preparing and submitting your application

  • Order a copy of your title on the Landata website
  • Get your plans drawn up
  • Create electronic versions of your paperwork
  • Register to apply online

Our decision process

Apply for your application

Checking your application

Advertising your application

If required, we'll advertise your application for least 14 days. This may include:

Assessing your application

We assess your application by:

  • considering all submissions that we receive
  • considering any referral comments
  • assessing planning scheme provisions
  • preparing a report.

Making our decision

Depending on the type of application, a planning decision may be made:

  • by a planning officer
  • at a Delegated Planning Forum
  • at an Ordinary Council Meeting.

Our decision may be:

  • approval of a planning permit or an amended permit
  • notice of decision to grant or amend a planning permit
  • notice of decision to refuse to grant a permit or an amendment to a permit.

We'll give a copy of the decision to permit applicant and anyone who provided a submission to support or object to the proposal.

How long will it take?

We aim to make a decision within 60 days of receiving your application. If we need more information, the 60 days starts from the date we get that information. The more steps your application needs to go through, the longer the assessment will take.

To ensure we can process your application quickly and efficiently, please ensure you include all relevant information.

You can fast-track applications through VicSmart, which usually takes around 10 days. Visit the VicSmart website to find out if you're eligible.

After our decision

VCAT may review your application

VCAT will only review your application if:

  • the permit applicant appeals against conditions or refusal
  • an objector appeals against a notice of decision to grant or amend a planning permit

For more information, visit our Appeal a decision page.

Complying with conditions

After we've approved your planning permit, sometimes you need to submit further documentation to comply with your permit conditions. After you submit your documents, we:

  • assess your documents
  • may seek views from specialists
  • advise you of our decision

Contacting other departments

After we approve your planning permit, you may need to apply for more permits. These may include:

This is not an exhaustive list, so make sure that you check with us and other regulatory bodies that you have all your approvals in place before you start.