Town Planning

The broad objective for town planning in the Town of East Fremantle is to provide for the current and future needs of the community in a sustainable manner. This is achieved through the application of strategic planning and development control functions by the Council.

Strategic planning involves the analysis of issues and the development of policy and statutory documents which influence the activities of residents, the business community and government agencies now and in the future. 

When Do I Need Development Approval?

In most cases, planning approval is required for all developments, although, if a development complies with the deemed-to-comply provisions of the Residential Design Codes of WA (R-Codes) and the Town’s Residential Design Guidelines, or is of a minor nature, it may be exempt from the requirement to obtain development approval.

Development is subject to the provisions of the Town of East Fremantle Town Planning Scheme No. 3, the Town’s Residential Design Guidelines and other Local Planning Policies where relevant (i.e. Noise Attenuation, Signage Design Guidelines, Town Centre Redevelopment Guidelines and George Street Mixed Use Precinct New Development Contribution to the Management of Access and Parking Guidelines.

The following information provides an overview of the most common types of development and whether or not development approval is required and how to make an application. When in doubt as to whether development approval is required, the proposal should be discussed with your consultant Town Planner, Building Designer or Architect.

Development Requiring Approval
  • Any development where variations to the Town's Local Planning Policies or deemed-to-comply requirements of the R-Codes are sought including new dwellings or extensions to dwellings (either single, grouped or multiple dwellings).

  • Development and/or Demolition of a building included on the Heritage List under Council’s Town Planning Scheme.

  • Any development located within the street setback area (except for resurfacing an existing hard surfaced area or landscaping works provided there are no wall features or structures as part of the proposal).

  • Any non-residential development (i.e. commercial use, consulting rooms, shops) - whether it is a new development, additions or any alteration to commercial site.

  • A Change of Use (i.e. from shop to office or from a residential use to commercial use and vice versa). Please contact the Town to discuss the change of use with a Planning Officer on 9339 9339.

  • Signage except where excluded under the Town's Signage Design Guidelines Local Planning Policy.

  • Strata Properties 

Development Not Requiring Approval

  • A patio, pergola or a shed provided no variations to the deemed-to-comply requirements of the R-Codes & the Town's Residential Design Guidelines are sought and not located in a heritage-protected place. 

  • Shade sails provided the works are not located in a heritage-protected place. 
  • Side boundary fencing provided the height including retaining from natural ground level is no greater than 2.3m (Note: For further regulations relating to side boundary fencing please refer the Department of Commerce / Building Commission web site to download a copy of the ‘Dividing Fences – A Guide booklet).
  • A boundary wall or fence provided no variations to the deemed-to-comply requirements of the R-Codes & the Town's Residential Design Guidelines are sought and not located in a heritage-protected place (provided the height including retaining from natural ground level is no greater than 1.8m.and it is 60% permeable above 1.2m)
  • Site Works behind the street setback area where changes to levels are no greater than 0.5m from the natural or existing ground level.

  • Demolition of residential or commercial buildings that are not included on the Heritage List of Town Planning Scheme No. 3.

  • Replacement of a Structure if proposed design is like for like except in the case of any solid fencing or solid structure in the front setback area, or any structure on the Heritage List of Town Planning Scheme No. 3.

  • Reroofing to the same specifications and materials as the existing roof.

  • Internal building works.

  • Solar Panels provided the solar panels are parallel to the angle of the roof and works are not located in a heritage-protected place. 

  • Swimming Pools provided not located in a heritage-protected place. 

  • Standard Television Antennae and Air-conditioning Units provided these are not visible from the primary street, the structure integrates with the building and is not visually obtrusive or impacts a neighbouring property.

  • Home Offices or Home Occupations (i.e. working from home in a study/office) with no customers or deliveries to the site and no impact upon the amenity of adjoining properties.

Request appointment with a Planner

It is strongly recommended applicants make an appointment with a planning officer prior to lodging an application. Applicants can discuss proposals and preliminary plans with a planning officer to get an idea of the planning process.

Planning officers can advise applicants on the proposed development and information required to lodge a complete application.

To discuss your proposal with a Town Planner, please contact the Town on 9339 9339 to book an appointment. 

How to Submit a Development Application

Email the following to

Please note: For a Development Application to be accepted, a completed checklist must accompany the application. 

Development Application Assessment Process

Once a development application is submitted, the proposed development will be assessed. Most applications will follow these steps during its assessment:

1. Development Control Unit (DCU) Meeting

Your application will be tabled at an internal meeting compromised of  members from the Town’s Planning Team. A preliminary assessment at the meeting will identify if any technical advise may be needed.

2. Referrals

Many applications will be sent to an affected department for technical comments. Applications may also be referred to the Community Design Advisory Committee (non-statutory committee) to provide independent expert advice. Further, an application may also be referred externally to a state authority (e.g. Main Roads, Fremantle Port Authority, Water Corporation, Department of Fire and Emergency Services, State Heritage Office). 

3. Advertisements

If an application is deemed to have an impact on surrounding landowners or the wider community, it will be advertised in accordance with the Local Planning Scheme No. 3.

4. Assessment and Determination

Once the previous stages have been finalised, the planning officer will review any comments and referrals made. The officer will assess the application in accordance with relevant statutory requirements and may request further information if necessary or advise of any issues to the applicant. Depending on the nature of the application, a decision will be made under the delegated authority of the Executive Manager of Regulatory Services or referred to Town Planning Committee for a final decision. 

Track Your Development Application

You can track your planning application online. You will need the application number. 

Track your planning application here

Current Proposals Open for Comment 

Current developments applications available for comment are listed here.

The Town of East Fremantle’s Town Planning Department carries out consultation of Development Applications, Scheme Amendments and other proposals that may affect owners, residents and the community in general and therefore advertises the proposals received as per the requirements of our Local Planning Scheme No. 3. 

A new initiative introduced by the Town also allows for current development applications to be available and advertised on the website, in conjunction with notification via a newspaper advertisement, sign on site or via a letter.

If you would like to make a submission on an advertised application, please do so in writing and submit prior to the advertising closing date which is stated in the details of each development application listed.

If you have any concerns regarding making a submission, viewing of plans please contact the Town's Planning Services on (08) 9339 9339.

Local Planning Scheme

Local Planning Scheme No. 3

For a copy of the Town's Local Planning Scheme No. 3 please click here and follow the link on the Department of Planning website. 

Planning and Development (Local Planning Schemes) Regulations 2015 (WA)

Planning and Development (Local Planning Schemes) Regulations 2015 (WA) were gazetted on 25 August 2015 and took effect on 19 October 2015. If you would like to know more about the Planning and Development Regulations 2015 please visit the Department of Planning Lands and Heritage website.

Deemed Provisions for Local Planning Schemes

The Regulations contain provisions relating to local planning strategies, schemes and scheme amendments. They also contain a Model Scheme Text and introduce a set of Deemed Provisions for local planning schemes that have automatically formed part of every local planning scheme in the State since the Regulations took effect in 2015. 

The Planning Regulation Amendment Regulations 2020 were gazetted on 18 December 2020, introducing amendments to the Planning and Development (Local Planning Schemes) Regulations 2015. These amendments will make further changes to local planning processes which will be introduced in two stages. 

The first stage is already operational and can be viewed below.

Request for Copies of Plans 

Should you require a copy of plans for your property, you can arrange for the Town to retrieve the plans by submitting the Request for Copies of Plans. A fee of $104.85 is applicable. 


Plan searches will only be undertaken if the request form is signed by the property owner. Only the property owner is entitled to view or request copies of the Town's Plans.

The Owner includes:

  • The person shown of the Town’s records as being the owner.
  • A person who is authorised in writing by the owner.

A Real Estate Agent CANNOT authorise copies of plans without additional written approval from the current property owner. The Town will require proof of identity, and/or written authority from the current property owner. 

Owners requesting copies of Strata Plans will be given plans for their own unit ONLY. Should a copy of entire complex be required, written authorisation from the Strata Manager is required.  


Local Heritage Survey

The Town of East Fremantle's list of heritage places has been established for many years and has periodically undergone review.  This list is referred to as the Local Heritage Survey or LHS (previously known as the Municipal Heritage Inventory (MHI). The LHS assists the Town in managing new developments as well as preserving and adapting significant heritage places for the benefit of East Fremantle as a whole.  The LHS does not prevent progress from occurring but rather gives the Town a heritage context in which new Development Applications are considered.

During the course of 2014/15, the Town of East Fremantle's LHS was reviewed.  The purpose of this review was to ensure that all places of heritage significance have been identified within the Town and that places with demolition approval are removed from the LHS.  Following consultation with landowners and occupiers, a revised LHS was adopted by the Council.  The revised LHS has provided the basis for updates and additions to the Local Planning Scheme - Heritage List.

Local Planning Scheme - Heritage List

The Town recognises the importance of protecting places of cultural heritage significance as a way to enhance the Town’s sense of identity and preserve its history for future generations.

The Town’s Heritage List forms part of the Town of East Fremantle Local Planning Scheme No. 3 and identifies properties that are of cultural heritage significance and considered worthy of protection.  In 2014 Council resolved that properties categorised as ‘A’ and ‘B’ be included on the Scheme’s Heritage List and in 2015 the Council determined to formally list these properties in the Planning Scheme.  The finalised Heritage List can be viewed in the attachment below.

Development approval is required for demolition, additions and alterations to properties on the Heritage List. The Town’s Planning Officers can assist with any enquiries regarding the heritage listing of a property and whether a heritage impact statement will be required to accompany a development approval application.

George Street Designated Heritage Area

The Town of East Fremantle has adopted a Local Planning Policy 3.1.6 - George Street Designated Heritage Area, which will apply to the properties identified in the Heritage Area as identified on the Heritage Area Map. This is to ensure the heritage value and status of George Street as a distinct group is protected and any future development in the area will now be managed as a cohesive whole under the provisions of the Policy. 

Detailed provisions address the development requirements of the area for existing and new buildings (such as the Royal George Hotel site) with the aim of protecting this highly valued heritage area. 

Adoption of the George Street Designated Heritage Area is viewed as the beginning of the Town’s intention to progressively investigate the introduction of heritage areas within the Town for future consideration by Council.  

Follow this link to view the map and the LPP 3.1.6  George Street Designated Heritage Area 

State Heritage Register (Heritage Council of WA)

The State Register includes properties that have cultural heritage significance at a state level.  Development approval is also required when developing these properties and any development application received is required to be referred to the State Heritage Office for comment.

The document below also explains the requirements for the management categories for properties on the Heritage List posted below.

Heritage List - LPS No. 3 and Public Places

Heritage FAQ

Local Heritage Survey - Category Management Schedule ABCDE 

Home Business, Home Occupation and Home Office

A Home Business, Home Occupation or Home Office is a small-scale business or activity operated within a residential property. The Home Business, Home Occupation or Home Office must be operated by the occupier of the residence and is not transferable to other owners, occupiers or properties. 

For guidance please see Fact Sheet:

Fact Sheet - Home Business Home Occupation Home Office

Home Business - accompanying information

Home Business - checklist

Application for Development Approval