Site alteration


Kitchener's site alteration bylaw was enacted to control site alteration activities within the city, such as the placing or dumping of fill; the removal of topsoil; and the alteration of the grade of land.

The following has been produced to provide citizens and developers with clarification as to when a site alteration permit is required.

The permitting process seeks to balance environmental and administrative considerations. The requirement of a permit allows the city  to ensure: 

  • Unanticipated drainage and site alteration is prevented.
  • Appropriate drainage patterns are maintained.
  • Interference and damage to watercourses or water bodies is limited;
  • Water quality is maintained.
  • The use of hazardous and/or improper fill is prevented.
  • Erosion and sedimentation is prevented.
  • Natural heritage features such as wetlands, valley lands, and woodlands and areas of archaeological resources are protected.
  • The city's natural topography, soils, and vegetative features are considered.

    When is a site alteration permit required?

    A site alteration permit is required:

    • for all properties 0.405 hectares (1.0 acre) or greater.

    A site alteration permit is not required:

    • For properties less than 0.405 hectares (1.0 acre).
    • the installation of a swimming pool, provided a pool permit is obtained.
    • minor gardening or landscaping projects.
    • normal farm practices.
    • development that is undertaken with the appropriate planning approvals and building permits.

    A site alteration permit will remain in effect for a period of 90 calendar days from the date of issuance.

    A permit may be extended where an application to renew is filed at least 30 calendar days before the date of expiry upon making of a written request to the city's director  of engineering, provided the proposed work, which was the subject of the permit, has not been revised.

    Permit application process

    If a site alteration permit is required, the applicant should submit the following items:

    • A completed application form
    • Five (5) copies of a detailed plan or survey
    • Supporting studies or reports
    • Payment of the required fees

    Permit fees

    The associated fees are as follows:

    • Site alteration permit: $280
    • Site alteration permit revisions: $175
    • Site alteration permit renewal: $115 (if a permit is renewed 30 calendar days before to the original expiry date)

    Please note the application will not be accepted for processing until the fee is received. 



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