Fast track applications

Straight forward proposals may qualify as ‘Fast Track’ planning permit applications. 

There are two types of Fast Track processes:

  • State Government ‘VicSmart’ applications
  • Moreland City Council Fast Track applications.

These applications are generally processed within 10 days and are not required to be advertised to neighbours.

In addition, Council has a Commercial Priority process for new or existing businesses. These applications may need to be advertised but are generally processed faster than standard planning applications.

State Government VicSmart applications

Only some applications are eligible to be processed as VicSmart

Refer to the checklists for the classes which qualify for VicSmart. Each class has specified requirements for information, assessment processes and decision guidelines.

If your VicSmart application does not contain all the required information, Council will request this information. In this case, a decision will likely take longer than 10 days.

If your application relates to subdivision (checklist 1, 2, 3, 8 or 9), see subdivisions for how to lodge this application.

For all other VicSmart classes, you need to submit a planning permit application to Council. You can submit the VicSmart application and pay the fee online. You need to upload a completed checklist as part of the application.

For step-by-step instructions on how to apply for a planning permit and what information you need to submit with the application, see planning process.

For further information on the VicSmart process and classes, see the State Government VicSmart website.

Secondary Dwellings assessed under VicSmart

Between August 2020 and March 2021, Merri-bek will be involved in a pilot program which aims to trial something called the ‘Secondary Dwelling Code’.

The State Government has developed this code to facilitate small-scale ‘granny-flat or garden studio’ style accommodation on the same lot as an existing dwelling in a residential area. Key aspects of the code to guide the siting and design of secondary dwellings are:

  • a height limit of 5 metres.
  • a maximum floor size of 60 square metres.
  • the need to meet the minimum garden area requirements of the zone, along with other siting and design requirements assessed through the permit process.
  • no ability to subdivide.

The assessment of secondary dwelling applications will be through VicSmart, provided that a number of mandatory criteria are met.

For more information on secondary dwellings, see the State Government’s Secondary Dwelling webpage. This includes an assessment pathway tool, which can be used to determine whether your proposal would meet the requirements of the Code. 

Moreland City Council Fast Track applications

There are some types of minor proposals that do not qualify for VicSmart. Council has developed its own local Fast Track process for these proposals.

A proposal will qualify for Merri-bek City Council’s 10 day Fast Track process if it:

  • Is not a VicSmart application (see above)
  • Contains all the required information at lodgement
  • Does not require referral to an external authority or internal department
  • Does not require advertising to neighbours, and
  • Is a supportable proposal.

To find out if your application is eligible for Merri-bek’s Fast Track, contact Council Urban Planning on 9240 1111.

Commercial Priority Business Applications

See Commercial for information on the process for Commercial Priority Business Applications for new or expanding businesses applying for a planning permit.