Construction working hours re-extended as COVID-19 measure: Weekend working hours revert to pandemic settings

Australia Publication June 2021

The permitted construction working hours in New South Wales have been changed again to allow building work and demolition work on Saturdays between 7am and 5pm, and specified works on a Sunday between the hours of 9am and 5pm. This change took effect on 11 June 2021 and was enacted via the Environmental Planning and Assessment (COVID-19 Development – Construction Work Days) Order (No 2) 2021 (NSW) (Order) (which can be viewed here). The Order reverses the previous position (see our update on this here).

The Order permits the ‘carrying out’ of ‘building work’ or ‘work’, or the ‘demolition’ of a ‘building’ or ‘work’, (as these terms are defined in the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 (NSW)) on a Saturday between the hours of 7am and 5pm. The Order also permits the following works and activities to be carried out on a Sunday between the hours of 9am and 5pm:

  • professional and administrative activities which do not involve any physical construction works;
  • painting;
  • wall and floor tiling;
  • waterproofing;
  • silicone work (sealing);
  • builders clean (excluding site clearing by use of bobcats or similar machinery);
  • carpet laying;
  • prefabricated joinery installation; and
  • any other works occurring indoors which do not produce substantial noise.

The works must be the subject of a development consent, and must comply with all conditions of the consent (except to the extent the consent restricts the hours of work or operation on a Saturday or a Sunday). Additionally, all feasible and reasonable measures to minimise noise must be taken. Works carried out on a Saturday must not involve rock breaking, rock hammering, sheet piling, pile driving or similar activities (except to the extent that this was already allowed under the development consent). For works carried out on a Sunday, workers must not play music or use a radio, and must not use certain noisy tools or equipment (including nail guns and electric power tools).

Subject to any further changes by the NSW Government, these extended construction working hours will continue to apply until 31 March 2022.


This article was co-authored with Ann Matthias.

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