Unroofed pergolas and arbors

Exemptions from development and building approval may apply to certain unroofed, unenclosed Class 10a buildings, provided they comply with relevant provisions of the Regulations. Examples include unroofed pergolas and arbors.

Exemptions from development approval

The development does not need development approval if it complies with relevant provisions of the Planning and Development Regulation 2008, Schedule 1. Below is a summary of the provisions. It is correct as of the date the web page was last updated - scroll to the bottom of the web page to find this. However, the Regulation's Schedule may been updated since then. In summary, the development is exempt provided that:

  • it is not an external deck or external verandah
  • it has no roof or walls
  • it is not more than 3m above natural ground level (the structure can be as high as 4 metres above ground level if no part is higher than a  30o plane - see picture)

Carports_heightdiagram

  • if the building has a floor the floor height is not more than 1m above finished ground level or 0.4m if it is within 1.5m of a side
    or rear boundary of the block
  • additional criteria apply if two exempt class 10 structures would be built within 1.5m of a side or rear block boundary. More information

If you are seeking to build on a rural block different exemption rules apply. (See Schedule 1, Part 1.3, Division 1.3.5, Section 1.85 of the regulation).

If you are still unsure whether your development is exempt you should check the regulation or call ACTPLA on phone: (02) 6207 1923.

A building certifier can ensure plans and work are completed in accordance with the law

See definitions to understand the terms in italics.

Exemptions from building approval

The development does not need building approval if it complies with relevant provisions of the Building (General) Regulation 2008, Schedule 1. Below is a summary of the provisions. It is correct as of the date the web page was last updated - scroll to the bottom of the web page to find this. However, the Regulation's Schedule may been updated since then. In summary, the development is exempt provided that:

  • it has no walls
  • is not more than 3m above ground
  • the floor level is not more than 1m above ground
  • the frame does not have an unsupported span (including any cantilever) of more than 4m
  • it will not affect the structural integrity of any part of a building for which a Certificate of Occupancy or other certificate under the Building Act 2004, part 5, has been issued
  • it will not affect a fire-rated wall, ceiling or floor
  • it will not affect a ventilation or air-handling system, fire protection system or other mechanical service
  • it will not affect a fire escape, emergency lift, stairway, exit or passageway to an exit
  • it will not affect the natural light or ventilation available to a building for which a certificate under the Act, part 5, has been issued
  • it will not affect the building in a way that reduces its compliance with the Building Code to a level that is less than the minimum requirements of the Code
  • it does not involve handling asbestos or disturbing friable asbestos (other than minor maintenance work, i.e. low-speed or hand-drilling, sealing, painting, coating if done personally by the owner or occupier of the premises).

No building approval, licence, notice, certifier, plans, inspections, certificates, design or construction standards required under the Building Act 2004.

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