To contact the Planning Department:
Phone: (03) 6397 7303 or email


Changes to Planning and Building Staff availability – commencing 8 January 2018

Due to the high volume of enquiries received, officers will be available for phone and face to face enquiries to discuss building and planning matters at the following times:

  • Monday – between 9:00am and 12:00pm

  • Wednesday – between 2:00pm and 5:00pm

  • Friday – between 9:00am and 12:00pm

For general enquiries please refer to our Fact Sheets located at:, or a copy can be obtained from the Council office.

Meetings can be arranged otherwise by appointment.

Thank you for your understanding.

Planning FAQs


The Northern Midlands Interim Planning Scheme 2013 (the planning scheme) applies to the Northern Midlands Council local government area.

The planning scheme consists of written text zone maps and overlay maps.

Each piece of land has a zone, such as residential, business, industrial, recreation or open space (shown by a colour on zone maps) that defines what use and development may be undertaken.

Some pieces of land are also subject to overlays (shown by hatching or colours on the overlay maps) and further code requirements (found in the planning scheme text).

You can find the zone of land and any applicable overlays at My Planning Enquiry

The meaning of ‘use’ and ‘development’

The terms ‘use’ and ‘development’ have particular meanings in the planning system. ‘Use’ is defined to include ‘the manner of utilising land but does not include the undertaking of development’. For example, proposing to use an existing house as a doctor’s surgery may not require any buildings or work, but it is a change to how the land was used before, and therefore a planning permit might be needed to make the change. ‘Development’ is defined as including:

(a) the construction, exterior alteration or exterior decoration of a building; and 

(b) the demolition or removal of a building or works; and 

(c) the construction or carrying out of works; and 

(d) the subdivision or consolidation of land, including buildings or airspace; and 

(e) the placing or relocation of a building or works on land; and 

(f) the construction or putting up for display of signs or hoardings.

When you require a planning permit

To find out whether you need a planning permit for a particular use or development you should contact council’s Development Services Department with the following information:

  • Street address or title details of the property in question;

  • Details of your proposed use;

  • Details of any proposed development (size of building, distances from boundaries).

If you are going to buy or lease a property, it is recommended that you make sure it can be used for what you want it for prior to purchase/lease. It can’t be assumed, for example, that a property can be used for a particular business just because there is already a business there. It also can’t be assumed that a planning permit application is not required simply because there are no building works proposed. You may need to get other approvals in addition to planning permit approval, such as building or plumbing approval.

Heritage Listed Properties

Having a heritage listed property means that any modifications need to be thoroughly assessed to make sure that the heritage characteristics of the property or area are retained.

Northern Midlands Council planning scheme listing

Planning approval is usually needed for use or development of a property that is:

The Council’s Local Heritage Adviser  

The Northern Midlands Council employs a Heritage Adviser to provide advice regarding works, fence styles, or colour schemes considered necessary to ensure a proposal is consistent with the heritage character of the property and/or streetscape.

Council’s Heritage Adviser, David Denman can be contacted, with the address of the property and details of the proposal, at:  


ph:         03 6334 4899  

7/59 William Street

Launceston Tasmania 7250  

There is no cost for the consultation and advice, however if you wish to engage Mr Denman to draw plans for your proposal, that would be at your own cost.  

Tasmanian Heritage Register

A property might be listed on the Tasmanian Heritage Register. Heritage Tasmania provides information on how you can find out if a property is listed on the Tasmanian Heritage Register.

If a property is on the Tasmanian Heritage Register, it is protected under the Historic Cultural Heritage Act 1995. To determine requirements under that Act you should contact Heritage Tasmania


Visitor Accommodation

To view the Visitor Accommodation Use in Existing Buildings - Standard Application Package please click here.

Footpath Trading

If you are a business and require a Footpath Trading License, the application form can be found here.

For further information or to speak to someone about the requirements please call Council on (03) 6397 7303.