Citizen Engagement: questions comments concerns

Frequently Asked Questions - Planning

Q: When is a land severance (consent) required?

A: The Planning Act requires that a land severance, or Consent, be obtained whenever a landowner wishes to convey away part of their land as either a separate lot, a lot addition to a neighbour's property, or a right-of-way/easement.  In the Township of Lake of Bays, you must obtain the consent from the Committee of Adjustment.


Q: How do I know if my property is under the new Development Permit By-law (04-180) or the Comprehensive Zoning By-law (04-181)?

A: The new Development Permit By-law applies to the waterfront areas in the Township.  Generally, if your property is on a lake it is within the"Waterfront" area, and it will fall under the jurisdiction of this by-law.  If your property is well away from a lake, or is within the boundaries of any of the communities of Baysville, Dorset, Dwight or Hillside, it is within the "Rural" or "Community" area and is under the jurisdiction of the Comprehensive Zoning By-law.  To be sure, visit the mapping (schedule) sections for each by-law (see light blue column on the right side of this page and click on appropriate by-law) and whichever shows your property in colour, that is the by-law that applies.

Click here for more information  - Zoning Process chart


Q: When is a by-law amendment required?

A: All properties within the Township of Lake of Bays fall under the jurisdiction of either the Development Permit By-law (04-180) for the "Waterfront" area, or under the Comprehensive Zoning By-law (04-181) for the "Rural" or "Community" areas.  Both of these documents enable the Township to control the use of land, buildings and structures, and in the case of the Development Permit By-law, regulate the removal of shoreline vegetation.  Both by-laws implement the policies of the Township's Official Plan by dividing the Township into Designations (Development Permit By-law) or Zones (Comprehensive Zoning By-law).  Each designation or zone delineates and regulates uses and sets out the required development standards such as location, height or size.

A by-law amendment may be required when a property owner wishes to establish a use which is not already permitted, or make changes to one or more development standards in the applicable designation or zone.  Permission to amend either by-law must be obtained from the Council of the Township. Regarding the Development Permit By-law, depending upon the amount and type of change a landowner wishes to make, it may be necessary to apply for a "Council Variation"instead.

Prior to applying for an amendment, landowners are encouraged to pre-consult with the Planning Department.


Q: When is a minor variance required?

A: The Planning Act requires that a minor variance be obtained whenever you wish to construct, renovate, or alter a building or structure in any way that does not meet the requirements of the Township's Zoning By-law (does not apply to the Development Permit By-law).  For example, if you wish to build an addition onto the side of your house which comes as close as 10 feet to the side lot line and the Zoning By-law requires a 15 foot setback, a minor variance would be required. A minor variance is also required if you wish to expand or change a use that is considered "legal non-conforming".  In the Township of Lake of Bays, you must receive approval for minor variances from the Township's Committee of Adjustment.



Q: When is a Development Permit required?

A: If a property falls under the jurisdiction of the Development Permit By-law (04-180), generally a Development Permit is required when removing vegetation or altering the land within 66 ft or 100 ft of the water's edge, depending upon the lake the property is located on.  Section 4.84 of the Development Permit By-law contains a table that lists situations where a Development Permit is required.  If a landowner is uncertain whether a permit is required for their proposed project, they can submit an inquiry to the Planning Department for their advice.

Click here for more information  - Development Permit Brochure


Q: When are site plans required?

A: A site plan agreement is a legal document that may include a site plan sketch and details exactly how future development will occur on the property.  The agreement is entered into between a property owner and the Township and is registered on the title of the property.

The Township requires that a site plan approval be obtained whenever you wish to develop a residential property that contains sensitive resource features or various development constraints (i.e. steep slopes or flood prone areas) Any commercial or industrial development within the Township also requires a site plan approval which must be reviewed by Council.


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