© Dries Luyten
Investdesk, your personal guide to the planning maze
As an entrepreneur or developer, obtaining preliminary planning advice for your project and/or investment plan is vital. Carrying out due diligence on whether a project will be permitted at a certain location significantly increases your chances of success. Investdesk guides you through these processes, providing support to get your project started and speed up its development.
Additional public support is also available from the Flemish Region through VLAIO (Flanders Innovation & Entrepreneurship). This combined public/private support network ensures that entrepreneurs have access to a comprehensive range of resources and assistance to drive their success.
Now, let’s take a look at what’s involved in the procedure.
How to obtain a building permit
Planning to build a new business premises or renovate your existing one? First, you’ll need a building permit, which will be issued once your plans comply with the planning regulations. Here’s how it works.
Free initial consultation
What options are available when renovating or building a new premises from scratch? How do you apply for a building permit for your construction project? You can get answers to these questions via a free consultation with Investdesk.
Bring a plan or sketch of the existing building as well as photos of the plot, any adjacent buildings or the immediate environment.
Also bring a plan of the intended finished building and premises. Be sure to specify the measurements of the premises and total depth of the plot and the intended function (e.g. offices, retail space or industrial use).
6th business frienliness
9th overall - large cities
Source: fDi Intelligence, European Cities & Regions of the Future 2022/23
What to expect next
Your application will go through the following stages:
Examination of the application
The city will receive your application and check to see if it’s complete. An application number will be issued straight away. If anything is missing, you will be notified of the documents that need to be included. The application will be automatically put on hold at this point. Once you have obtained all the missing documents, you can re-submit the application. If everything required has been included, you will receive confirmation that the application is complete. It is only at this point that the formal application process starts. You will now be able to track the status of your application online.
In certain cases, the city will launch a public consultation. This gives your neighbours the opportunity to submit objections to the permit being sought.
Report of the urban planning official
A planning official makes sure that your application is in line with proper urban planning standards, taking into account all essential and non-essential recommendations requested (e.g. by Investdesk). The official then draws up a report and submits it to the city’s planning board.
That’s a go! (probably)
The board will make a decision no later than 75 calendar days after the date of notification that the application is complete (or 105 days if the application involves a public consultation). You will receive a copy of the decision within 10 days.