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A Review of Brisbane City Council’s Planning Industry Forum 22nd February 2021 

The Urban Planners Queensland team had the pleasure of attending the Brisbane City Council’s first Planning Industry Forum of 2021 at the new Brisbane Business Hub. Speakers included the Deputy Mayor and Chair for City Planning and Economic Development; Councillor Krista Adams, as well as Brisbane City Council’s Chief Planner; Dyan Currie and the Manager of Development Services; Peta Harwood.

The forum provided a detailed insight into how Brisbane’s planning and development sector fared throughout COVID-19 in 2020, and what strategies the Council put in place to bolster the industry throughout the pandemic to ensure its resilience and growth into the future. The Planning and Building Economic Recovery Initiatives were a noteworthy introduction that waived approximately $1.9million in application fees across 2020; giving developers the green light and the confidence they needed to move forward with projects in these uncertain times. This initiative proved itself to be a successful addition as we learnt that Development Applications increased by 11% and Domestic Applications increased by 12% in 2020 in comparison to 2019. The new Development-i system used for tracking Development Approvals also reflected this industry boom as we learnt that the site is being accessed approximately 4600 times per week.

In terms of the future outlook for Brisbane City, moving forward in what we are coming to know as the new normal is looking promising for the planning and development sector with new services and strategies on the horizon. The Council is looking to roll out a variety of schemes, including the Future Development Enablement Service, the Brisbane Industrial Strategy and a new Housing Strategy. There is also a new fact sheet available; ‘Generally In Accordance’, which can be found via the link here. 

Overall, we found this event engaging, informative and a great networking opportunity. Urban Planners Queensland are excited for the future events that BCC has to come in 2021.