Rates, Building & Property

Building consent for commercial buildings

You’ll need a building consent if you’re planning on making changes to a commercial or industrial building – you’ll also need to provide more information than for a regular building consent.

Specified systems and compliance

When you apply for a building consent for a new (or existing) building with specified systems, you will need to provide information with your application to enable us to compile (or amend) a compliance schedule.

Specified systems are systems or features that help a building to function fully – like sprinklers, lifts, ventilation and air conditioning. These systems are crucial to the safety and health of a building and those who use it. As a building owner it is your responsibility to ensure the systems are inspected and maintained according to the compliance schedule. If they fail to work properly they could adversely affect health or life safety, which may also affect your insurance cover. There are 16 specified systems in the Building Act – these must be identified on your building consent application form.

We will require details of the design features of the specified systems and proposed procedures for inspection, maintenance and reporting so they can be included in the compliance schedule. This will also include the performance standard a specified system is intended to meet, and to continue to meet, for the life of the building. For example, a fire alarm system may be required to meet New Zealand Standard 4512.

Compliance schedule

When we issue a building consent we will state whether the building requires a compliance schedule. A compliance schedule states the specified systems and their performance standards, and includes the inspection, maintenance and reporting procedures needed to keep them in good working order.

The building consent will identify what documentation you need to provide to Council when construction is complete, before a code compliance certificate and compliance schedule can be issued. This may include certificates from installers of specified systems, testing and commissioning results, and third-party verification from accredited inspection bodies for fire alarms and sprinkler systems as required by New Zealand Standards.

Compliance schedule statement

Council is required to issue a compliance schedule and compliance schedule statement for new buildings or amend a compliance schedule where any specified systems are added, altered or removed. The compliance schedule is issued with the code compliance certificate. A compliance schedule statement is a document that is issued once and only with a new compliance schedule.

The compliance schedule statement must be displayed in a public part of the building for the first 12 months of the building’s life. This is usually inside the front foyer or ground floor reception area.

To initiate a change to the compliance schedule, you need to apply for an amendment. Complete the form below and submit it to us with the accompanying fee.

Referrals to Fire and Emergency New Zealand

Council is required to send a copy of some types of building consent applications to Fire and Emergency New Zealand (FENZ). For more information about the types of applications that must be sent to FENZ, see the notice on the New Zealand Gazette website.

Certificate for public use

A certificate for public use allows premises affected by building work to be used by the public. You can only apply for a certificate for public use if a building consent has been granted but the code compliance certificate has not been issued.

Your application for a certificate for public use needs to describe the precautions you will take to protect people using the building until the code compliance certificate is issued. This should include any specified systems, how people would escape from a fire, and access and facilities for people with disabilities.

You will still need to apply for a code compliance certificate once you've completed your building work.

Pallet racking

Pallet racking installations require building consent. Applications for consent must have appropriate documentation to show that the installation will comply with the building code.