The Municipality's Zoning By-laws describe the specific uses permitted on any parcel of land, as well as regulating such things as lot size, the height and location of buildings, and parking requirements. Any proposed use of land or change in the form or use of an existing building must comply with all the regulations and requirements in the Zoning By-law.
If you want to develop your property in a way which is not permitted by the Zoning By-law, you must apply for a Zoning By-law amendment (re-zoning). However, minor changes to the Zoning By-law may be permitted by applying to the Committee of Adjustment for a Minor Variance. In addition, if the proposed use is not in accordance with the Official Plan, you will need to apply for an Official Plan Amendment.
HOW TO APPLY
Before making an application, you should discuss your proposal with a planner in the Municipality's Planning Department. It may also be beneficial to refer your proposal to the Municipality's Development Review Team as part of the pre-consultation process.
If it is determined that a Zoning By-law Amendment is the only means available for accomplishing your development, then you should submit the appropriate application form complete with all required supporting documents, along with the appropriate fee (see Fee Schedule).
WHAT HAPPENS NEXT
Once a complete application has been filed, a date for a Public Meeting will be set and Notice of Meeting will be sent to all surrounding property owners within 120 metres of the property to which the application applies, as well as certain prescribed Ministries and agencies. The Notice must be sent out at least 20 days prior to the date of the Public Meeting. Also a sign will be installed on the property briefly describing the proposal.
The Municipal planner will prepare a report for the Public Meeting with a recommendation to either approve or refuse the re-zoning application. You may appear at the Public Meeting to present your views. If Council approves the proposed amendment, it will pass a by-law which will be circulated to give interested parties the chance to appeal. A 20-day appeal period is provided for, once notice of Adoption of the By-law has been given. If no appeals are received by the end of the appeal period, the amendment is in full force and effect.