Shade Sail Exemptions

Shade Sail Exemptions

Exemption of Schedule 1.

A building consent is not required for the following building work:

The construction, installation, replacement, alteration, or removal of any shade sail made of fabric or other
similar lightweight material, and any associated structural support, if the shade sail --
(i) does not exceed 50 square metres in size; and
(ii) is not closer than 1 metre to any legal boundary; and
(iii) is on the ground level, or, if on a building, on the ground or first-storey level of the building.

Shade sails, usually fabric, can be attached to the exterior of a building or be free-standing with their own support structures (e.g. to cover a deck, patio or children’s play equipment as protection from sun or as a wind buffer).
This exemption recognises the relatively simple, low-risk nature of such structures. While there may be
significant wind loadings (and this should be carefully considered during the design and assembly phase),
apart from erecting and making connections to structural supports, there is very little building work involved
in the construction or installation of shade sails.
The compliance costs associated with consenting such structures can often be disproportionate to overall construction costs, and given the simplicity of most of these structures adds limited value to the building process and safety objective.


Examples where exemptions could apply: Examples where work is NOT exempt and a building consent is required.
A shade sail is to be erected above a sandpit at a childcare centre. The proposed shade sail has a total area of 42 square metres, and is two metres away from the nearest boundary. A shade sail is to be erected above a play area at a
kindergarten. The proposed shade sail has a total area of 50 square metres, but is located on the boundary.
The owner of a café decides to install several shade sails 9 square metres in size in an outdoor courtyard to provide protection from the sun for the customers. A shade sail with an area of 60 square metres is to be installed above an open courtyard at a shopping complex to provide shelter for customers.


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