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Design Review Panel

Welcome to the CBCity Design Review Panel!

We highly recommend you seek guidance from the Design Review Panel before submitting a Development Application for the types of development listed below and/or as advised by Council officers during the pre-DA meeting.

This dedicated team of independent professionals, specialising in architecture, urban design and landscape architecture will offer guidance on development projects in our City. Our aim is to ensure consistency and high-quality outcomes in line with the new Canterbury-Bankstown Local Environmental Plan Design Excellence clause.

Join us as we strive to enhance the visual appeal and functionality of our built environment through thoughtful design.

The Design Review Panel underscores our commitment to enhancing design quality and fortifying it for the future. We're working towards a more beautiful city, where new buildings positively contribute to how our city and suburbs look and feel.

The Panel's early guidance will streamline the Development Application (DA) process, minimising changes after an application is lodged, saving you time and money.

The Design Review Panel will review and provide guidance on the following types of development, as outlined in the Design Excellence clause of the Canterbury-Bankstown Local Environmental Plan:

  • Boarding houses with 4 or more storeys
  • Multi‐dwelling housing consisting of 10 or more dwellings
  • Residential flat buildings with 4 or more storeys
  • Schools with a gross floor area of 2,000m2 or more
  • Centre‐based childcare facilities accommodating 100 children or more at one time
  • Seniors’ housing or co‐living housing with 4 or more storeys
  • Commercial premises with a gross floor area of 1,000m2 or more
  • Shop top housing with 4 or more storeys
  • Warehouse or distribution centres with a gross floor area of 5,000m2 or more
  • Places of public worship with a gross floor area of 1,000m2 or more
  • Registered clubs with a gross floor area of 1,000m2 or more

Our officers may also request the Panel's guidance for planning proposals and other projects that could benefit from a design review. The Panel’s expertise can help enhance the overall quality and aesthetics of such projects.

The Panel meets monthly to provide guidance at the pre–lodgement stage. Council may also request guidance post‐lodgement if needed.

Please note that there is an application fee for an initial design review session and for each subsequent session. You can find detailed information in our Fees and Charges.

Council officers will inform you of the meeting date and time and invite you and your representatives to attend. You can actively participate in the discussion regarding your application.

After the meeting, you will receive a written response that explains the Panel's guidance and advise on the next steps. You should consider this before lodging your DA to streamline the process and minimise the need for further design advice.

How to apply
  • 1

    Contact the Duty Planner on 9707 9000

    Before applying, have your plans ready and contact the Duty Planner to discuss the proposal and request a general pre-DA meeting. The Duty Planner is available Monday to Friday, from 8.30am-noon.

  • 2

    Attend a general pre-DA meeting with Council officer/s

    During the pre-DA meeting, Council officers will give general advice and specify if Design Review Panel advice is necessary. Council officers will also explain the requirements and fees for submitting a DRP request.

  • 3

    Complete  the DRP request and email it with the associated documents to

    You should follow these steps to complete and submit a Design Review Panel request:

    • Fill out and submit the DRP request form
    • Submit the advice received during the general pre-DA meeting
    • Prepare and submit the briefing package
    • Create and submit a brief presentation that covers the key issues (maximum 10 slides)
    • Pay the applicable fees

Requirements for the DRP briefing package

The briefing package submitted to the panel should contain appropriate information that is suitable to the scale and significance of the development, to enable the panel to provide a comprehensive context-specific design guidance.

If the information package is deemed insufficient, we may request additional information before referring the development to the DRP, or during subsequent design review sessions, which may result in additional costs.

Typically, the package should include, but not be limited to:

  • Plans, sections, and elevations
  • Contextual analysis
  • Design response diagrams and illustrations (such as images, 3D representations, sketches, etc.
  • A table demonstrating compliance with relevant legislation

The Duty Planner can provide you with all the specifications about the briefing package.