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COVID-19 Australia: Changes for Construction approvals in NSW

  • Market Insight 2 April 2020 2 April 2020
  • Asia Pacific

  • Coronavirus

Today a new Ministerial Order relating to COVID-19 was released relating to the construction and development industry.

COVID-19 Australia: Changes for Construction approvals in NSW

Under the terms of that order, construction sites in NSW are now permitted to operate on weekends and public holidays, irrespective of what their consent may otherwise allow, subject to conditions restricting the types of works and hours worked on those days, and a general obligation to minimise noise on those additional days. The full terms of this order can be viewed under "Minister Orders 2020" on the Department of Planning website: https://www.planningportal.nsw.gov.au/Orders

This is intended to keep construction projects progressing by allowing building work to be spread across more days of the week while abiding by social distancing rules.  We understand informally from some clients working on high profile construction sites that authorities are undertaking random inspections for compliance with social distancing rules. As such, clients should take full advantage of the new rules to sequence works in a way which balances both the health and safety of employees, with commercial deadlines.

The NSW Treasurer also wrote a letter to the construction industry, which reassures the industry that the government remains committed to delivery of its infrastructure program, and their intention to work flexibly with contractors. A copy of this letter is available at: https://www.planning.org.au/documents/item/10568

Please contact the Projects team if we can assist in any way during the current COVID-19 outbreak with complying with planning or environment obligations, or in any other way.

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