SealSMART and Brisbane Town Planning Firms

When you enquire at or visit the websites of Brisbane’s town planning firms, you might stumble upon the SealSMART logo or a statement from them that says they are SealSMART accredited. Accreditations such as SealSMART enable firms to carry out their town planning services in a more efficient manner. If you work with a firm that has obtained SealSMART accreditation, you are likelier to meet your project goals faster and hit your other targets or deadlines in time.  

In this article, learn all about SealSMART: what this accreditation is and why it is important. 


What Is SealSMART?  

SealSMART is a process that aims to improve the plan sealing stage of your project. With SealSMART, accredited consultants can work on the self-certification of development applications.  

For development applications to Brisbane or Queensland local councils, plan sealing is the final stage of the development application process. At the plan sealing stage, the Council signs off and adds a physical seal on your survey plan.  

For example, if your development is a land subdivision, you will only obtain your new titles once your plan is sealed. Once the development is finalised and you have satisfied all the necessary requirements and conditions for approval, your local council endorses the survey plan and later seals the plan. 

With a SealSMART accreditation, a town planner in Queensland will: 

  • Collaborate closely with the local council, determining suitable applications and agreeing on certification requirements for each development approval condition 

  • Call on other industry professionals to check and certify that the applicant has complied with all conditions  

  • Provide these industry professionals with pieces of evidence to establish that the applicant is indeed compliant 


In short, local councils trust that a SealSMART-accredited town planner has thoroughly gone through your application and has also involved other professionals in confirming your compliance. Councils seal SealSMART survey plans within just five business days.  

Why SealSMART Is Important  

Before you break ground on a property, you go through a long and oftentimes tedious process. You involve consulting land surveyors to perform an accurate survey on the lot. You collaborate with urban designers to create a property that is not only aesthetically pleasing or functional but also meets the local council’s building requirements. You interact closely with your local council to make sure your project complies with policies such as zoning laws.  

So, if there is a way for you to speed up the process (without sacrificing the quality of your information or your team’s overall attention to detail), you should definitely go for that. Working with SealSMART-accredited Brisbane town planning firms is one of such ways. The sooner you can get a project started, the sooner the property can have use and purpose.  

Aside from the SealSMART advantage, you should also consider how a firm fares overall. Here are the services that Brisbane town planning firms offer:  


Land surveying 

Your project will involve one or several different surveys. The most common one, required across all development applications, is the boundary survey. A boundary survey locates and determines the metes and bounds of a parcel of land. Boundary surveys require the land surveyor to research the lot’s existing records and compare them with new field research, which involves going to the location to perform new measurements.  

Similar to the boundary survey is the location survey, where the land surveyor provides additional information on the improvements made in the property, compared against the property’s set boundary lines. 

A site planning survey is required when you are requesting approval to build on or make improvements to a property. A site planning survey includes detailed information on where you plan to build, the measurements of your proposed building or building extension, and other details of your proposed improvements. This process results in the survey plan, which is what the local council seals as mentioned above.  

Liaising or partnering with urban designers  

If you want your property to look aesthetically pleasing while also maximising its function, you need the best urban designers by your side.  

Urban designers do not only consider the property itself. They consider the surrounding built environment or the natural environment in your desired location. They also consider the community’s overall approach to urban design. For example, if trends in urban design in Brisbane is gearing towards more environmentally sound urban design solutions, they will incorporate these in their design. If you are planning on building a residential subdivision, your urban designer might suggest including more green spaces like parks, or building around instead of on nature.  

A reliable town planning firm maintains close connections with reputable urban designers. The people they work closely with are those whom they trust and whose work they are constantly impressed by. You can count on a town planner’s word when it comes to choosing an urban designer or urban design firm.  

General advice and support 

Town planners, especially the most experienced ones, have worked closely with local councils and other industry professionals. After having taken on project after project, they know the process like the back of their hands and can guide you through it every step of the way.  

You too as the applicant will have your own responsibilities in the project, and a town planner can advise you on what to prepare or how to carry out your tasks such that you save as much time as possible without losing your attention to detail.  

They can also give sound advice on other stages of your project post-approval: how to choose the best construction company, how best to market your property, etc. Once you establish a solid working relationship with your town planning firm, you’ll be all geared up for many more development projects in the future.  

Work with JDA Consultants Today  

JDA Consultants are town planners and consulting surveyors in Queensland. With over 50 years of experience, we’re proud to have contributed significantly to the beauty and functionality of Brisbane’s built environment. Work with us today. Call us at (07) 3252-3777 or email us at You may also message us via our website’s enquiry form. 

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