Private use of the road reserve / nature strip

The strip of Council owned land on the road reserve, located between the kerb and the property boundary is known as the nature strip.

Council permits minor building works on the nature strip by the public (such as a footpath into your property, retaining walls, handrails), as long as they are applied for and approved under the Local Government Act 1993 and Roads Act 1993.

Please note, there are various other application types relating to the nature strip or road reserve such as skip bin, storage bin or crane placement, road closure, driveway construction etc. The Private Use of the Road Reserve Application CANNOT be used for these applications - please refer to Council's Forms section for the correct application type. If you are unsure, please contact Council's Customer Service on 9424 0000, or by email at with a clear description of proposed activity.

Is Council approval required prior to any temporary or permanent building or landscaping works by private residents on the road reserve or nature strip?

Yes, Council approval is required prior to any work commencing.

Failure to do so may result in an Issue of Non-Compliance, and in some cases, the work may need to be demolished and reconstructed at your cost.

Note: Complying developments on private land (CDC) require a separate approval for any works on the nature strip or road reserve.

What are the requirements?

Ku-ring-gai Council's Private Use of Road Reserves and Nature Strips policy ensures the design and construction of all encroachments onto Council land (no matter how minor) are made in accordance with relevant legislation and Council requirements. This is to ensure:

  • Public safety.
  • Safe pedestrian access.
  • Maintenance of safe sight lines for traffic movement.
  • Service authorities access and rights over the road reserve.
  • Provision for Council street tree/s and clarification of the responsibilities for ongoing maintenance.
  • Damage and reinstatement expectations in order to reduce Council's exposure to risks associated with private use of public land.

Read Council's Private Use of Road Reserve and Nature Strips policy (pdf. 275KB).

How do I apply to undertake private works on the nature strip or road reserve?

To permit use of public land by property owners, an application and Council consent is required for either temporary or permanent structure, or hard or soft landscaping. This is in compliance with the Local Government Act 1993The Roads Act 1993 and current Ku-ring-gai Local Environmental plans.

A "Private Use of the Road reserve" application and payment of fee may be made online by clicking on the red application button below. It must be accompanied with relevant documentation such as detailed drawings or structural engineering plans for any permanent or temporary structures, or detailed drawings for any hard or soft landscaping. Upon receipt of the fee, a Council Officer will inspect the location and provide approval or comments within 15 days.

View a list of current fees and charges  - see page 31 for Private Use of Road Reserve application fees, dependent on type of work.


Inspection and approval

Council must be contacted at least 1 full working day prior to arrange an inspection of the completed work.

Inspections are only carried out between 8.30am and 3pm Monday to Friday.

This inspection is required so as to ensure your work complies with approved consent.

Only after completion of the final inspection will your works be deemed approved.


For any questions prior to commencing you application, please contact the Engineering Assets Officer  on 9424 0965.


This webpage provides a summary of the major issues concerning the Private Use of the Nature Strip or Road Reserve. Any person using this document must do so on the basis that not every scenario and issue can be addressed, and discussion with relevant staff at Council should be undertaken. This page is subject to change without notice.