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Section 4.55 Modification of a Development Consent


Formerly known as Section 96, after a development consent has been issued, the original applicant or anyone entitled to act on the applicants behalf can apply to Council for approval to modify that development consent.

An application to modify a development consent is made under Section 4.55 of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 (the Act). Section 4.55 refers to the part of the Act that allows a development consent to be modified, as long as the development is substantially the same.

If Council does not agree that the proposed modifications would result in substantially the same development as was originally approved, a new development application will need to be submitted for assessment.

When can an application for modification be made?

An application for the modification of a development consent can only be made if a valid development consent has been issued by Council. A development consent is only valid for 5 years. A development consent remains valid once the approved development has commenced in accordance with the conditions of a development consent.

What types of modifications are allowed under Section 4.55?

There are number of different types of modifications allowed under Section 4.55 of the Act. Council's application form can be used to make an application for three of these types of modifications:

Section 4.55 (1) – Modifications involving minor errors, misdescription, or miscalculation

There would be no change to the form of the development approved, and notification would not be required. For example:

  • Wrong plan numbers

Section 4.55 (1a) – Modifications involving minimal environmental impact

These are used for minor amendments. There is no impact on privacy, height, overshadowing, etc., and notification is generally not required. These might be:

  • Internal design changes

  • Amended landscape plans

  • Drainage design amendment

Section 4.55 (2) – Other modifications

 These are all other modifications where environmental impact is possible. They generally require notification. Typical changes include:

  • Windows

  • Floor levels

  • Heights

  • Car parking generation

  • Roof design

How can an application for modification be made?

From 1 July 2020 all Section 4.55 Modification Applications are required to be lodged via the NSW Planning Portal. A Section 4.55 Modification Application can be lodged via the NSW Planning Portal accompanied by a completed checklist and the relevant documentation. The Checklists (small scale or major) are available under Development Forms. For more information see Online DA Lodgement.