Amendments to the Zoning By-Law are sometimes required to enable a particular development that is otherwise not permitted on a given property, or to update or modify a Zoning By-Law regulation(s).
Map amendments – commonly referred to as re-zonings – are required in order to change the zoning of a particular property. An example of this would be changing the zoning of a property from residential to commercial to allow a business to be developed on said property.
Proposed re-zonings must demonstrate consistency with the planning policies and land use designations outlined in the Mid-West Planning District (MWPD) Development Plan. If a conflict exists with the planning policies and land use designations of the MWPD Development Plan, map and/or text amendments to the Development Plan may also be required.
There are two types of amendments and two ways to start a Zoning By-Law Amendment.
Type 1: changes that affect a single property. Example: re-zoning a property.
Type 2: changes that affect an entire zone or all zones. Example: Changes to on-site parking, adding or removing Permitted or Conditional Uses, changing set back distances.
Method 1: As an property owner, you can apply for changes that only affect your property. An application to amend a municipal zoning by-law with all the required information and fees shall be made to the Mid-West Planning District.
Method 2: Council may on its own initiative or at the petition of constituents (if Council is in agreement) amend a zoning by-law. The municipality works with Mid-West Planning District to execute the process. If as a constituent, you wish to petition the municipality to amend the zoning by-law for a Type 2 change, contact your municipal office for their process.
The municipal Council must adopt a Zoning By-Law amendment by-law for an amendment (map or text) to be approved and in effect.
If they decide to go ahead with a by-law revision/update, they will need to send it to Community Planning for revisions.
The revised by-law will get first reading at a Council meeting and at that point revisions to the proposal can be done. Council will also need to book a public hearing date. Notice for the hearing would be done through advertising.
The public hearing would be held to hear from the public on the proposed revised by-law. Speakers for and against will get to make their arguments. Council and only Council will be able to ask questions. At this point, Council may make more revisions to the by-law wording after the hearing.
At a Council meeting, the by-law would go to second reading. Again, if there were any modifications to the wording, it would be done at that time.
Then Council would need to do a third reading and vote to adopt the revised by-law.
Once it is adopted, it comes into effect.
If objections to a Zoning By-Law amendment by-law are made during the application process, an appeal hearing before the MWPD Board may be required.
Due to the statutory steps required, a Zoning By-Law amendment can take four or more months to complete from the date of application.
Prior to submitting a Zoning By-Law amendment application to the MWPD, it is strongly recommended that you contact us first to discuss your proposal. To initiate a Zoning By-Law amendment application, the following application requirements must be submitted to the MWPD:
- Completed Planning application form
- Detailed letter of intent
- Detailed site plan (if applicable)
- Status of Title(s) for all land subject to the application. The Status of Title(s) cannot be more than 30 days old
- Fees in accordance with the MWPD’s Fee Structure By-Law
Please note that incomplete applications will not be accepted.