Tidal works and major development proposals

Tidal works applications

Development applications for new tidal works are administered as part of the Planning Act 2016.

Development applications that affect a state interest are referred to the State Assessment and Referral Agency (SARA) as identified in the Planning Regulation 2017 triggers. SARA is the single point of state referral and assessment for development applications that affect a state interest. Maritime Safety Queensland provide technical advice to SARA regarding the impacts of development applications on maritime safety interests as part of the development process.

Where an application includes operational works that are triggered under the Planning Regulation, the application will need to be referred to SARA. This trigger may apply to development applications which propose:

  • tidal works
  • interfering with quarry material
  • disposal of dredge spoil or other solid waste material in tidal water
  • constructing an artificial waterway, for example a canal
  • removing or interfering with coastal dunes on land. 

Tidal works are defined under the Coastal Protection and Management Act 1995 and can include construction or demolition of boat ramps, bridges, embankments, jetties, pontoons and wharves.

The State Development Assessment Provisions (SDAP) support SARA to assess an application. The SDAP establishes development requirements for proposals that may impact on maritime safety. The department has produced supporting information for SDAP to assist applicants in preparing development applications that achieve the performance outcomes and acceptable outcomes for the maritime safety state code (State Code 7).

For further information about development assessment and the planning framework, refer to the Queensland Government’s Planning website.

Major development proposals with likely maritime impact

Maritime Safety Queensland provides expert maritime advice to the Department of State Development through the Office of the Coordinator-General on major development proposals with likely maritime impact. Maritime Safety Queensland also provides expert maritime advice for development proposals declared by the Commonwealth Minister for the Environment as a ‘controlled action’ under the Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999.

To assist proponents of these projects to identify maritime related impacts and to define mitigation strategies, Maritime Safety Queensland has developed supporting information for the State Development Assessment Provisions which includes information for major development proposals.

The supporting information specify the minimum information required by Maritime Safety Queensland to evaluate significant development proposals. The preferred format for presentation of this information is through the development of management plans for:

  • marine execution
  • vessel traffic management
  • aids to navigation
  • ship-sourced pollution prevention.

Maritime Safety Queensland reviews these management plans to assess major development proposals and provide recommendations to the Coordinator-General on conditions for approval. Maritime Safety Queensland reserves the right to request additional information and make recommendations about the proposal to the Coordinator-General.

For further information about Maritime Safety Queensland’s role in development assessment of tidal works and evaluating major development proposals email msq.portdevelopment@tmr.qld.gov.au.

Last updated
06 January 2023