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Revitalising Underutilised Buildings

As part of the revitalisation of Adelaide and creating a more vibrant city, owners and investors can now access a range of measures to help unlock investment opportunities in the Adelaide CBD.

The measures include financial, regulatory and administrative incentives designed to encourage investment in existing building stock, in particular the re-use of ageing office buildings in the Adelaide CBD. The measures complement the City of Adelaide's 5 year rate rebate and provide a unique opportunity to build upon Adelaide's infrastructure, location and culture.

Upgrading existing buildings

The measures includes a range of initiatives to make it easier to upgrade ageing underutilised buildings, including:

  • A new Minister’s Specification SA: Upgrading health and safety in existing buildings which reduces the building performance standards from 79 under the National Construction Code to 24 across the State.
  • The Specification was developed to assist relevant authorities exercise their discretion when considering requiring an existing building to be upgraded. The document also provides property owners, tenants, developers and building practitioners with a broader understanding of the safety and health objectives of the legislation.

  • An amendment to the Development Regulations 2008 removes the requirement for planning consent for internal building work, including demolition, in the City of Adelaide (with the exception of heritage buildings). This is consistent with the rest of the State.

The Australian Building Codes Board has published a handbook to assist practitioners when developing or approving proposed work to upgrade an existing building. The handbook assists in the identification of potential deficiencies and determining a scope of work required to alleviate those deficiencies.

City-living incentives

Additional incentives are being offered to owners/investors of Core C and D grade buildings in the CBD wishing to convert their office buildings to residential, including:

  • waiving of development application fees;
  • access to a free Activation Coordinator that will provide an advisory service to:

If you would like to take advantage of the coordination service, forward a completed Expression of Interest form (PDF, 958 KB) to For further information contact the Activation Coordinator on 1800 752 664 or by email at

Page last modified Tuesday, 27 August 2019