Development Permits

What is a Development?

Development includes the carrying out of any construction, excavation, stockpiling or other operation, in, on, over, or under land, or the making of any change in the use or intensity of use of any land or building either permanently or temporarily. The Province allows municipalities, through the Municipal Land Use Bylaw, to regulate developments via the "Development Permit" process; however, not all developments require the issuance of a development permit. Please consult the County Development Officer in order to determine whether your development requires the issuance of a permit.

What is a Development Permit?

A development permit is a document permitting a specific development and may include conditions imposed to ensure that the development complies with the current Land Use Bylaw. The issuance and approval of a development permit is proof that the subject development conforms to applicable development standards (e.g. height limitations and required setbacks) and, as a "use" of the land, is appropriate and permissible. The development permit is separate and distinct from a Building Permit. In addition to the development permit, a building permit may also be required. The approval of a building permit is proof that the structure conforms to the relevant safety codes.

When is a Development Permit Required?

Development permits are generally required for any construction (including new construction, additions, and structural renovations), change of use of land or a building, or a change in the intensity of land or building use. Examples of developments requiring permit approval include expansion of an existing approved business, a mobile home, a structural alteration to an existing building, the relocation of an existing building, a fence over 3 feet in height (when located in a front yard, and 6 feet when located in side yards).

When is a Development Permit NOT Required?

  • Maintenance or repair to any building without structural alterations or major works of renovation.
  • Shelterbelts as per section 14(1)(c) of LUB
  • Construction, maintenance, and repair of private walkways, pathways, driveways
  • Construction of an accessory building or structure less than 2.0m (6.5 ft) high and not more than 18.58 m2 (200ft) however, these must follow setback requirements.
  • Uncovered decks. However, you may need a building permit
  • Satellite dish, light standard, or flagpole and structures less than 4.5m (15ft) in height, on a parcel containing a single detached dwelling, duplex, or manufactured home.
  • Signage in accordance with Section 78, signs NOT requiring a development permit.
  • Ornamental pond, shallower than 1m (3.28ft) where its value is decorative.
  • Dugouts & Borrow pits, however, these must follow setback regulation.
  • In all districts except the Agriculture District, gates, fences, walls less than 0.9m (3ft) in front yards and less than 1.8m (6ft) in the side and rear yards, corner parcels must meet the regulations set out in section 34 of LUB..
  • In the Agriculture District, gates, open fences, walls, or other means of enclosure less than 2.7m (9ft) in height provided they do not impede sightlines set out for corner parcels in section 34 of LUB.

How do I obtain a Development Permit?

Please submit the following: 

Things to note: 

  1. Legislation requires a decision to be issued within 40 days. (Or an extension is required.)
  2. Applications for discretionary use are circulated to adjacent landowners for comment prior to issuing a decision.
  3. If construction has not started within 1 year of an issued permit, the permit is considered void. A new application is required.
  4. There is a 21-day appeal period following the issuance of a development permit.
  5. Development adjacent to a provincial highway requires a Roadside Development Permit issued by Alberta Transportation.
  6. The Homeowner/Contractor is obligated to obtain all the necessary Safety Code Permits prior to construction.

A SITE PLAN AND THE REQUIRED FEE MUST ACCOMPANY ALL PERMIT APPLICATION FORMS.

THE COUNTY WILL NOT PROCESS AN APPLICATION WITHOUT THE APPROPRIATE DOCUMENTATION. COMMENCING A DEVELOPMENT WITHOUT AN APPROVED PERMIT WHERE REQUIRED IS ILLEGAL.