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Relocating a building or structure?

Council does support the relocation of houses from one site to another. Houses can be moved within the Tweed Shire area or can come from far away such as Brisbane.
Typically the house relocation requires the same approval process as if it were a new building. So that would mean a Development Application or in some cases a Complying Development application.
Apart from the normal application requirements the following should be addressed when contemplating a House Relocation:

  1. Is the exterior condition and design of the house suitable for the proposed new site without needing large amounts of work on refinishing or renovating? For houses coming from a far distance often recent clear photographs are sufficient for Council to assess the building. Also the more concealed the house site is the less particular Council will be about the existing external condition of the building This requirement usually means that house relocations are mostly proposed for rural properties.
  2. Generally the building design is to be consistent with the character of other buildings in the area and this requirement also prevents most dwelling relocations to urban areas.
  3. Is the home structurally adequate to be transported and repositioned? An Engineers certificate of structural adequacy is often required to support the application.
  4. The house must not contain any asbestos materials. Usually a report from a licensed asbestos assessor or Occupational Hygienist is required to show that the building is free from asbestos. It is however acceptable to have the asbestos removed from the building by licensed persons and certified before the building is relocated.
  5. An additional application form is also required for house removals Application for Inspection, Removal and Relocation of Structures (191kB PDF). This form covers the specific issues relating the house removals and outlines the additional fees required in the assessment of house removals such as a road bond which is refundable on the successful transport of the structure within the shire without damage to Council’s roads and road furnishings.

Demolishing a building or structure?

Council may require a Development Application in respect to building renovations and/or the demolition of structures. Where a Development Application is required and these structures contain Asbestos material council may place general conditions on any Development Application advising the applicant of provisions contained in relevant Australian Standards, Occupational Health and Safety Regulations and Guidelines produced by the WorkCover Authority of NSW in relation to handling or working with asbestos.

An application for demolition will need to include additional specific information such as a Demolition Work Plan and general information about the services on the site and for this purpose you are required to complete the Information to Accompany Development Application to Demolish a Structure (93kB PDF) form which includes a description of the information required for the Demolition Work Plan.

To provide a chemical barrier to termites, organochlorine pesticides were applied extensively within the Tweed Shire beneath structures such as dwellings (predominantly beneath concrete slabs) from pre 1960s until the use of such pesticides was banned around July 1995.

Organochlorine pesticides are known to persist in the environment and may remain in the soil material beneath these structures. Exposure to high levels of organochlorine pesticides may lead to serious health concerns in humans and may pose an issue when considering applications for the demolition of structures.

Where removal of these structures are proposed, Council must consider the requirements of State Environmental Planning Policy (SEPP) 55 – Remediation of Land and Council's Pre-Demolition Testing Guideline (69kB PDF).

Applicants shall submit a sub slab pre-demolition testing report prepared in accordance with Council’s Pre-Demolition Testing Guideline. The testing and report shall be undertaken and prepared by a suitably qualified environmental consultant with experience in the assessment of contaminated land.

Where removal of a slab on ground footing system has occurred and testing was not conducted at the time, the applicant is to engage a suitably qualified environmental consultant with experience in the assessment of contaminated land to undertake a preliminary site investigation including site sampling in accordance with relevant NSW EPA contaminated land guidelines to the satisfaction of Council’s Environmental Health Officer verifying that the land is not contaminated and is suitable for its proposed use.

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