Earthworks & Siteworks

Earthworks are considered to be any alteration to the land contour or disturbance of land. These include the importation of clean fill, excavation, backfilling, retaining or re-compaction of existing natural ground that is, or will be, associated with the construction of a building or incidental structure. Earthworks are not exempt from requiring building approval. 

What is required? 

  • Owners who have chosen to do the earthworks in lieu of their builder, must obtain a building permit prior to any earthworks commencing.
  • Builders who rely on an owner for completing earthworks must ensure the earthworks are completed as per the building permit before commencing work on a building.
  • A building permit for a building will not be issued for a building or incidental structure if a permit for earthworks is outstanding or required.
  • If an effluent disposal system is required, an application for the installation of an apparatus for the treatment of sewage shall be required prior to issue of a building permit for earthworks.
  • Urban Water Management Plan (UWMP) - Check with your developer before purchasing a property, especially a rural, semi-rural property.  Ask if there is a UWMP in place, as this could add thousands of dollars of sand pad and retaining costs to your contract.

What documents do I need for my Building Application? 

  • Completed application form BA1 or BA2 with all owners noted and builders section completed and signed
    Applicable fees (please see fee schedule)
  • Certificate of design compliance (only if submitting a BA1 – Certified Building Application)
  • Site plan at a minimum scale of 1:200 showing:
    - Full extent of earthworks including proposed finished sand pad level
    - Setbacks from the lot boundaries and all other buildings on the property.
    - Location of any proposed effluent disposal systems
    - A permanent datum point, contours, spot levels and feature survey of the property.
  • Elevations at a minimum scale of 1:100 showing:
    - Heights and materials for any embankments, stone pitching or retaining
    - All existing and proposed ground levels
  • Engineering details signed by a structural engineer showing:
    - Site report and soil classification (Geotechnical report)
    - Footing details (if required)
    - Stone pitching details (if required)
    - Construction details

Will any other approvals be required before a building permit can be issued?

Fun Fact: Did you know 80-90% of Building Permits applied for are put on hold because of little or no consideration for the Shire’s planning and health requirements at the design stage? 

It is important to speak to our planning and health teams about your project before finalising and submitting your building application.  This will ensure a smoother and more efficient building approval process and avoid unnecessary and lengthy delays.

Please note that this list is not exhaustive and further information may be requested.

For further information, please contact Building Services on 9526 1111 or by email at