The standard BMO application process also known as Pathway 2 applies to developments including:
  • More than one dwelling on a lot
  • Dependent person’s unit
  • Industry, Offices, Retail premises
  • Some outbuildings greater than 100sqm
  • Vulnerable land uses, such as child care and education centres, hospitals
  • Works or extensions to existing buildings, except a dwelling or dependent person's unit, where the works are greater than 10% of the existing gross floor area.

Drawing of shops in a street

Application pathways in the BMO are set out in the Planning Permit Applications Bushfire Management Overlay - Technical guide

Speak with your local council if you are unsure which pathway applies to your development.

Permit exemptions for other development types

The BMO includes some exemptions from the need to obtain a planning permit. For a list of common exemptions refer to:

Building in the BMO

Planning permit application

There are requirements to meet so that council can assess how a proposed development responds to bushfire and applies bushfire protection measures to reduce risk.  

What do I need to consider?

Your permit application needs to address:  

1. The bushfire hazard 

An application must address the bushfire hazard on the site, and in the surrounding landscape. This will help determine if it is appropriate to develop in an area. It will also show if and how risk can be reduced through a design response that includes appropriate bushfire protection measures.

This is done through a bushfire hazard site assessment and bushfire hazard landscape assessment.

For information on how to prepare a site and landscape assessment refer to:

2. Bushfire protection objectives and measures

Your application should address all relevant objectives in the planning scheme including:

Your application will need to demonstrate that the proposed development meets the State policy in clause 13.02-1S.

Key objectives and strategies are:

  • prioritise the protection of human life
  • identify and assess the bushfire hazard
  • as appropriate, locate and design development to respond to identified risk.

The BMO specifies objectives and corresponding design measures in clause 44.06.

The BMO requires development to:

  • meet requirements in clause 53.02 - refer below 
  • meet mandatory permit conditions for construction, defendable space, water supply and access
  • be referred to the relevant fire authority - see clause 66.03

More information:

Note: a schedule to the BMO, or other control, may include different permit exemptions, additional or substitute bushfire protection measures, decision guidelines, referral exemptions and permit conditions.

Clause 53.02 Bushfire planning works alongside the BMO. It sets out specific bushfire protection objectives and design measures that applications must meet including:

  • landscape and site hazard assessments
  • building siting, design and ability to withstand bushfire attack (BAL)
  • defendable space and vegetation requirements
  • on-site water supply
  • emergency services vehicle access.

If you’re in a BMO schedule, it may specify other or additional measures.

For more information on design measures,
refer to:

What information do I need to provide?

A planning application must include:

Templates are available:

Before preparing your application, speak with your local council to identify any issues you need to address. 

A bushfire planning consultant can help you prepare and manage a planning permit application. A list of accredited bushfire planning and building practitioners is available on the Fire Protection Association Australia website (note: this is not a comprehensive list)

How will the council assess the application? 

Your local council will assess your application based on the requirements and decision guidelines in the bushfire planning provisions.    

The council will consider whether:  

  • all required documentation has been provided  
  • the proposed development meets the objectives of
    • State planning policy
    • the BMO
    • clause 53.02 
  • risk has been considered and can be mitigated or warrants the development not proceeding  
  • the proposed protection measures can be implemented and maintained alongside the ongoing use of the land
  • any other requirements in the planning scheme are met.

Page last updated: 07/08/20