Planning - Current & Development

The Planning Division provides professional advice to Council on land use planning issues and is the coordinating department for the processing and approval of development applications. Staff is always available to assist the public with the many questions and concerns associated with the continuing growth of our community.

The Planning Division administers City Bylaws that regulate land use and development. In some situations, a property owner may request amendments or variances to these bylaws through approval by City Council.

Applications and Guides


The following are the most common land use and development bylaws:

City Council may consider amendments to the Zoning Bylaw (PDF). Where a proposed change to the Zoning Bylaw does not include land use or density, City Council may also consider authorizing issuance of a variance permit. Examples of Zoning Bylaw variances include increasing the maximum permitted height or reducing the minimum permitted setback for a building. A variance permit may also change requirements of the Subdivision and Development Servicing Bylaw (PDF) and the Sign Bylaw (PDF).

The Zoning Bylaw (PDF) allows for City Council to consider the approval of a Special Needs Housing Agreement which allows the placement of a temporary dwelling on a parcel of land for compassionate use subject to a number of criteria.

The Tree Removal and Protection Bylaw (PDF) may require a tree cutting permit prior to the removal of trees on a property.

Official Community Plan

The Official Community Plan (PDF) in Sections 9.4 and 10.4 allows for City Council to consider authorizing issuance of a temporary commercial or industrial use permit in identified areas of the City where a proposed use in not permitted by the Zoning Bylaw (PDF).

The Official Community Plan (PDF) requires that City Council authorize issuance of a development permit prior to development occurring in development permit areas. Development needs to incorporate the development permit guidelines of the development permit area in which it is located.

A form and character development permit is required prior to development occurring in the City Centre (Section 9.5) and Highway Service/Tourist Commercial and Neighbourhood Commercial (Section 9.6) land use designation areas. This type of development permit is also required for development fronting major roads in the Industrial (Section 10.5) land use designation areas.

An environmentally sensitive riparian areas development permit (Section 5.4) or potential hazardous areas development permit (Section 6.4) may be required to be authorized for issuance by City Council prior to subdivision or development occurring. Alternatively, the Director of Development Services may consider approving Development Permit Waiver (PDF).