Pre-application meetings

A pre-application meeting with a Department of Transport officer will help identify any potential design issues and confirm what information is required to be submitted with your planning application to ensure an efficient planning permit process.

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When to request a pre-application meeting

Where the Department of Transport is a determining referral authority for a planning permit, you are encouraged to have a pre-application meeting to review your proposal before you submit your planning application to council.

This may include discussing matters relating to the following:

  • Creation or alteration of access to an arterial road
  • Subdivision of land adjacent to an arterial road
  • Development on land affected by a Public Acquisition Overlay where the Department of Transport is the acquiring authority
  • Development on land affected by a CityLink Project Overlay
  • The display of electronic signage within 60 metres of a freeway or arterial road
  • Applications where an alteration or development of public transport infrastructure or stops is proposed
  • Applications that abut a rail corridor or interface with rails, including rail tunnels
  • A major development where public transport will need to be taken into consideration accordance with Clause 62.02-11 of the Victoria Planning Provisions.

A pre-application meeting starts with constructive discussions about your preliminary plans to identify any issues as early as possible prior to you submitting your permit application for approval.

This collaborative approach, in which you are encouraged to work with our officers to seek a mutually agreeable way forward, enables more efficient assessment of your permit application by the Department of Transport later.

Learn more about Victoria Planning Provisions.

Information required for a pre-application meeting

Prior to making a request for a pre-application meeting, please take the time to gather the following information:

  • Current copy of title (search within the last six months) and a copy of any encumbrances 
  • A written summary of the proposal
  • Concept plan/s and elevations
  • Photos of the site and any surrounding features
  • Any reports you may have already obtained such as traffic engineering reports, traffic impact assessments, arborist reports, etc.
  • For electronic sign applications, a lighting report and traffic impact assessment in relation to the proposed signage
  • For CLPO applications proposing basement construction, geotechnical or hydro-geotechnical reports
  • A list of proposed meeting attendees and email contacts.

This information should be attached to your pre-application meeting request to enable our officers to inform themselves of the proposal prior to the meeting taking place. 

Based on the information you provide, we will be able to identify issues, concerns or opportunities to improve your planning application. The more information you provide, the more comprehensive our response can be to your proposal and the easier it will be to identify issues at an early stage.

Please note that we do not provide a pre-application advice phone service.

Benefits of a pre-application meeting

A pre-application meeting can provide benefits for all parties, including:

  • Information to applicants on what elements of a proposal are likely to be acceptable or unacceptable
  • Improvements in the quality of information provided with your planning application
  • Reduction in time delays resulting from requests for further information and changes to the design of a proposal
  • Increased certainty about the outcome of an application
  • Reduction in application processing times
  • Reduction in the number of refused applications (and subsequent VCAT cases).

Lodging a request for a pre-application meeting

Once you have lodged a request for a pre-application meeting, you will be assigned an officer you can liaise with who will set up and attend the meeting.

For larger applications, meetings may involve traffic engineers and other representatives.

For simple applications, our officers may be able to provide pre-application advice without the need to schedule a meeting.

To lodge a request, contact us.

What happens after a pre-application meeting?

The officer who attends the pre-application meeting will provide a written response summarising the key points and the information discussed with the applicant during the meeting. We will endeavour to provide this written response within 14 days of the meeting. The written response will also be kept on our property file for future reference should a planning permit application be lodged, and a referral subsequently received by the Department of Transport.

If you have a pre-application meeting with any referral authority, including the Department of Transport, it is important that you mention this when submitting your planning permit application with Council as it could expedite the process of a response being provided by the referral authority. 

Please note that pre-application meetings with the Department of Transport (DoT) are for information purposes only. No information provided at a pre-application meeting constitutes legal or other professional advice and you may wish to consider obtaining independent advice.  DoT makes no warranties or representations whatsoever about the accuracy, completeness, relevance or reliability of any information provided by DoT at a pre-application meeting. DoT excludes, to the maximum extent permitted by law, any liability for loss of any kind arising directly or indirectly from any inaccuracy, incompleteness or other defect in the information provided at a pre-application meeting or any negligence or lack of care in relation to the preparation or provision of the information. DoT accepts no responsibility to update any information provided at a pre-application meeting.