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Whakaaetanga huarahi tūmatanui

Common access way approval

What common access approval is for

A common access way approval is a type of engineering approval required for the physical construction of common access ways and driveways servicing multiple lots.

These may be in the form of:

  • rights of way
  • commonly-owned access lots
  • private roads
  • common areas.

Our tip

If the common access way includes a cesspit, you will also require a building consent before starting construction.

Design and construction considerations

  • Sub-base, sub-grade and basecourse materials and strength.
  • Surface strength, thickness and weather resistance.
  • Frictional performance (in cases of steep sites).
  • Carriageway widths and gradients.
  • Alignment within subdivision easements and boundaries.
  • Manoeuvring or tracking for required vehicle movements.
  • User safety.
  • Natural hazards.
  • Effectiveness of drainage.
  • Appropriateness of retaining structures.
  • Suitability of construction details within the dripline of trees.
  • Preservation of natural surface water flows.
  • Vertical clearance.

Assessment process

For technical help on how we assess concrete driveways, see the guidance document below.

For other types of driveways, see the GD01 Stormwater Management Devices guide on the Auckland Design Manual website, and relevant New Zealand standards. 

We determine what inspection requirements will apply for your construction based on how complex your application is.

We're more likely to require pre-construction and final inspections if your application includes:

  • industrial or commercial development
  • gradient steeper than 1:5
  • driveway subject to overland flow paths and inundation
  • driveway subject to significant geology hazard, such as engineered backfill
  • specific engineering designs, such as permeable paving or bridge structures
  • use of higher risk construction materials, such as hot mix asphalt
  • reliance on a retaining wall that is integral to the formation of the shared driveway
  • public access or right of way in gross.

All other flat driveways that meet the design guidance for concrete private driveways will be assessed as low risk, and won't require inspections.

Why we test existing access ways

In order to authorise an access way for shared use, we need to test it to check if it complies with our construction standards.

Testing methods largely used are:

  • Benkelman Beam testing for flexible pavements.
  • Core samples and crush testing for concrete pavements.

Our tip

Building consents do not address driveway construction (just the associated drainage and retaining).

We cannot accept a Code Compliance Certificate (CCC) as evidence that a driveway has been appropriately constructed.

​Common access way application fee

Read fee table.
Service Fee
Approval of engineering works (major) and consent to drainage works - construction of private drains through adjoining premises of works on private land$2500
Approval of engineering works (minor) and common access way$1200

Our tip

You may have to pay for additional costs or receive a refund where appropriate.

​Apply for common access way approval

You can apply here for approval to construct a common access way, or if it is part of a larger project, you can apply for it as a part of a major engineering approval.

We only accept online applications for common access way approvals. If you can't apply online, visit one of our libraries with council services for help in making your online application.

See Ways to pay online for information on all payment options.


​Common access way approval


If you can't provide digital copies of your plans or documents, visit one of our libraries with council services. Our staff will accept your documents, but it may incur an additional charge to cover the costs of scanning your documents into our digital consent system.

Call us on 09 301 0101 if you have questions regarding your application.


​What happens next

We aim to process common access way approvals within 20 working days. Approval takes longer when additional information is required.

We will let you know the decision by email.

If approved, we will advise who to contact to arrange inspections (if applicable) and supply your compliance documentation. Usually it will be the same development engineer who assessed your application.

You'll need to provide:

  • a statement of certification for common access way approval (see below)
  • logsheet
  • compaction test
  • inspection records (if applicable).

The person supervising the construction and signing the statement of certification must be a current Chartered Professional Engineer (CPEng), Registered Professional Surveyor (RP Surv) or Registered Engineering Associate (REA).

​Find out more

Contact us and ask to speak to the duty engineer in your area.

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