Learn about our different building permits and what you need to include in your application. If you have any questions, send us an email or call us at 519-741-2312.

On this page:

  1. Application process
  2. Adding solar panels
  3. Adding a backflow device
  4. Installing or altering a septic system
  5. Emergency water service repair (outside of business hours)
  6. Emergency water or sewer replacement or repair (during business hours)
  7. Water, sewer, storm - new or replacement
  8. Tent
  9. Demountable stages and demountable support structures
  10. Outdoor patios

Application process

Visit our apply for a building permit page to find:

  • how to apply for a permit
  • processing times
  • drawing requirements
  • permit fees
  • what happens when we issue your permit
  • information about inspections

All projects must follow our zoning bylaws.

If you're looking for a building permit for your home, visit our residential building permits page.


Adding solar panels

You need a building permit for any solar collector with an aggregate face area of 5 sq. m. or greater that is mounted to a building or structure.

Existing buildings must be evaluated for the extra loading the solar panels apply to the roof assembly. Solar panels may add dead loads to the structure and can also cause extra wind uplift and live loads (snow accumulation due to placement of panels). Transfer of loads through the panel mounting systems may cause a relocation of where and how the loads are applied to the roof assembly (uniform and/or point loads). If insufficient capacity is identified systems would have to be strengthened.

Some building owners may want to install a system without proper review, but you must take proper steps to ensure the protection of your building and the safety of its occupants.

Use the accordions below to find the requirements to apply for this building permit.

Fees
  • permit fee: $95
  • rebate fee for single & semi-detached home or duplex: $250
  • rebate fee for most other buildings: $1,000
Rebate fees are automatically refunded when the final building inspection is approved.
Forms
Construction drawings - single family and duplex

1. Plan view

  • location of panels on building

2. Building system review (by Professional Engineer of Ontario)

  • identify existing structural system including sizes and spacing
  • letter showing existing roof and supporting structure are adequate to support loads from new solar collectors

3. Supplementary construction, if upgrades are needed (by Professional Engineer of Ontario)

  • identify size and location of any supports or bracing to be provided to existing systems
  • prescribe size and location of all new supports
  • confirm all loads are sufficiently transferred to footings

4. Fastening system info (by Professional Engineer of Ontario)

  • panel mounting detail
  • size and spacing of fasteners, rails and supports
  • location of panels on existing structure along with corresponding location of supporting elements in these area 

5. Pre-manufactures mounting rail system manufacture specifications

6. Solar panel manufacture specifications 
Construction drawings - multi-residential, ICI 

1. Plan view

  • location of panels on building

2. Building system review (by Professional Engineer of Ontario)

  • identify existing structural system including sizes and spacing
  • letter showing existing roof and supporting structure are adequate to support loads from new solar collectors

3. Supplementary construction, if upgrades are needed (by Professional Engineer of Ontario)

  • identify size and location of any supports or bracing to be provided to existing systems
  • prescribe size and location of all new supports
  • confirm all loads are sufficiently transferred to footings

4. Fastening system info (by Professional Engineer of Ontario)

  • panel mounting detail
  • size and spacing of fasteners, rails and supports
  • location or panels on existing structure along with corresponding location of supporting elements in these areas 

5. Mounting rail system details (by Professional Engineer of Ontario)

6. Solar panel manufacture specifications


Upon completion of the solar installation a Professional Engineer of Ontario must review the installation and provide a certification letter to the Building Inspector.

Adding a backflow device

Backflow happens when water flows in the opposite direction. For instance, instead of running from the city's water system into a business or home, the water runs the reverse way. That means whenever a foreign substance, such as a bottle of weed killer is connected to the end of a garden hose, the potential for pollution is created.

A backflow preventer (BFP) can stop this problem before it happens. These devices ensure unwanted substances do not enter the city's clean water supply.

Use the accordions below to find the requirements to apply for this building permit.

Fees
  • permit fee: $104.32 per device
Forms
  • application form - ensure permit description explains the location of the device

Installing or altering a septic system

A septic system processes all the wastewater from your house. You need a building permit if you are installing, repairing, altering or disconnecting a septic system.

Use the accordions below to find the requirements to apply for this building permit.

Fees
  • permit fee: new system $462, major repair $231, minor repair $95
  • rebate fee: $250 (automatically refunded when the final building inspection is approved)
Forms
Site plan

Show these items on your site plan:

  • location of new septic system
Construction drawings
  • sewage system design report

Emergency water service repairs (outside of business hours)

For emergency water service repairs on private property, you must complete the requirements for the emergency water service repair permit. You must apply for a permit at City Hall the next business day.


Emergency water or sewer replacement or repair (during business hours)

For emergency water service or sewer repairs on private property, you need a building permit before starting the work. You must apply for a permit at City Hall. A building inspector must inspect the repair or replacement.

Use the accordions below to find the requirements to apply for this building permit.

Fees
  • permit fee: $95 or $0.59/linear foot
Forms

Water, sewer, storm - new or replacement

You need a building permit to replace or install a new water, storm or sewer service connection on private property.

Use the accordions below to find the requirements to apply for this building permit.

Fees
  • permit fee: $95 minimum or $0.59 per linear foot 
Forms

Tent

Tents require a building permit when the area of the structure exceeds 60m² (645sf) or when the area of two or more tents exceeds 60 square metres (645 square feet). Two or more tents are considered a group of tents if the tents are not more than 3.0 metres apart. A tent or group of tents may not require a permit if they are:

  • less than 60 square metres (645 square feet) in total (aggregate) ground area;
  • not attached to a building; and
  • constructed more than 3 metres from all other structures

Use the accordions below to find the requirements to apply for this building permit.

Fees
  • permit fee: $163 per site

Permit and rebate fees are due when the permit is submitted. We must receive the fees in order to start the permit review timeline and process. See our fee schedule or send us an email for help with the fee calculations. If a code review is required for determining the permit fees, the rebate fee is still required at the time of permit submission.

Application requirements
  • application form
  • site plan (next accordion)
  • interior plans
  • fabric specifications and certificate (material must meet the requirements of CAN/ULC S109-M or NFPA 701)
  • tent information form
  • letter of approval from our transportation division if you’re building the tent on a city road (call 519-741-2379 for more information)

If your tent is larger than 225 square metres (2421 square feet):

  • structural plans stamped and signed by a professional engineer, including framing and anchorage details
  • commitment to general review form (architect or engineer)

If your tent will be up for more than 14 days:

  • site plan (next accordion)
Site plan

Show the location of the tent in relation to:

  • other structures
  • property lines

Please show dimensions less than 3 metres (10 feet).

Include these locations:

  • fire routes
  • overhead wires
  • washrooms

If your tent will be up for more than 14 days, you need to apply for a site plan.

Interior plans

If setting up a tent with no walls, show the location of:

  • furniture
  • fire extinguishers

If setting up a tent with walls, show the location of:

  • furniture
  • fire extinguishers
  • means of egress
  • exits

If using a tent after dusk, show the location of:

  • exit signs
  • emergency lighting
More information

Demountable stages and demountable support structures

You need a permit for demountable stage(s) that are: 

  • more than 60 sq.m (646 sq.ft) in area and any part of its platform(s) is more than 3m in height above adjacent grade level, or 
  • more than 225 sq.m (2422 sq.ft) in combined area, or 
  • any part of the platform or any roof, wall or structure attached to or located on any of the platforms is 5m or more in height above adjacent ground level.

You need a permit for demountable support structure(s) that are:

  • more than 3m high above adjacent ground level,
  • designed to carry superimposed specified loads greater than 115 kg, or
  • would create a hazard to the public.

Use the accordions below to find the requirements to apply for these types of building permits.

Fees
  • permit fee: $163 per event per property

Permit fees are due when the permit is submitted. We must receive the fees in order to start the permit review timeline and process. See our fee schedule or send us an email for help with the fee calculations.

Application requirements
  • application form
  • commitment to general review from (engineer)
  • demountable stage & demountable support structure information form
  • site plan (next accordion)
  • structural plans stamped and signed by a professional engineer, for stage(s) and any/all support structures, including framing and anchorage details
  • elevation drawing
  • stage floor plan / layout and details, applicable to stages only (see accordion below)
  • flame resistance specifications and certificate for any tarpaulins, decorative materials, fabrics or films attached to the demountable stage or demountable support structure (material must meet the requirements of CAN/ULC-S109 or NFPA 701)
Site plan

Show the location of the demountable stage and/or demountable support structures in relation to:

  • other structures
  • property lines

Include these locations:

  • fire routes
  • overhead wires
Stage floor plan/layout drawing and details (for stages only)

Floor plan drawing of the stage platform showing:

  • overall dimensions
  • egress stairs
  • travel distance
  • guard locations (if guards required by OBC)

Other general information and details to be provided:

  • stair details
  • guard details (if guards required by OBC)
  • ramp construction details (if applicable)
More information
  • if you’re erecting a stage or support structure on a city road, contact our transportation division (call 519-741-2379 for more information)
  • if you need hydro service, visit the Electric Safety Authority website or call 1-877-372-7233
  • if you need a copy of your building plan or property survey, you can submit a request online

Outdoor patios

You will need a patio application for outdoor patios associated with a building, or a suite within a building (example: restaurant) if they are:

  • new or modified
  • permanent or temporary/seasonal
  • located on grade (examples: sidewalk, parking lot, etc.), or located on a structure (examples: raised deck, platform, etc.).

Use the accordions below to find the requirements to apply for the new or modified outdoor patio.

If you previously had an approved outdoor patio application and are looking to renew the application, visit our patio program page.

Fees

There are no fee charges for an outdoor patio application from the Building Division.

However, other fees may be applicable:

  • encroachment agreement fees (when the patio is located on city property)
  • site plan approval fees (when the patio is subject to site plans approval)
  • building permit fees (when the patio includes a structure such as a roof, deck, or tent that required a separate building permit)
Application requirements
Required plans
  • site plan drawing that identifies the location and boundary of the patio in relation to the property boundaries, building(s), and other site structures and features.
  • patio layout drawing, must include:
    • overall dimensions of the patio
    • entrance of the patio and building/restaurant
    • location of entrances / exits for the existing adjacent building / restaurant
    • show location of any fencing or planters used to define the patio (e.g.: flowerpots, fencing, painted lines, etc.)
    • location of all tables and chairs
    • sizes and dimensions of all tables and chairs (e.g., 2’ square)
    • proposed number of chairs at each table
    • host/hostess stand if applicable
    • widths of all walkways/aisle ways
    • distance between tables/seating and edge of patio
    • location of any structures (roof, pop-ups, shade sails, tents, etc.). A separate building permit may be required for these structures, see the patio guidelines for more information regarding patio structures
    • location of exterior mounted sprinkler / standpipe fire house connections (if applicable)
    • locations of existing trees and furniture (e.g.: light posts, planters, garage bins, bollards, etc.)
    • exterior mounted fire department connections (sprinkler/standpipe), if applicable
    • curbs and parking spaces (if applicable)