Farm protection development permit

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In accordance with the Official Community Plan, Chapter 15 – Farm Protection Development Permit (DP) Guidelines, the objectives of a Farm Protection DP is to:

  • Protect farm land and farm operations;
  • Minimize the impact of urban encroachment and land use conflicts on agricultural land; and
  • Minimize conflicts created by activities designated as farm use by the Agricultural Land Commission (ALC) regulation, and protected under the Farm Practices Protection Act, and non-farm uses within agricultural areas.

A Farm Protection Development Permit is required prior to any development proceeding on agricultural properties, or those adjacent to agricultural properties including:

  • Subdivision of land;
  • A Building Permit involving an alteration to the building footprint*, Soil Permit, or alteration of land associated with the following uses:
    • Agri-tourism
    • Agri-tourist accommodation
    • Agricultural dwellings, additional
    • Carriage house
    • Utility services, minor impact
    • Wineries and cideries
    • Greenhouses and plant nurseries
    • Agricultural and garden stands
    • Temporary farm worker housing

Note that some exemptions in accordance with Official Community Plan Farm Protection Development Permit Guidelines, Chapter 15, apply.

Farm protection guidelines

In accordance with the Official Community Plan, Chapter 15, Farm Protection Guidelines:

  • Design adjacent properties to minimize conflict between residential and agricultural uses.
  • Establish and maintain a landscape buffer on both agricultural and non-agricultural properties.
  • Design structures within a contiguous ‘homeplate’.
  • Install landscape and fencing buffers in accordance with the Ministry of Agriculture ‘Guide to Edge Planning’ and the ‘Landscape Buffer Specifications’ or their replacements.
  • Preserve all existing healthy and mature trees located within the buffer area.
  • Integrate double rows of trees, including coniferous trees and dense vegetation into the buffer.
  • Where appropriate, use roads, watercourses, gullies and topography to create buffers between agricultural and non-agricultural areas.
  • Where appropriate, use statutory covenants to ensure that buffers are established and maintained.
  • Design landscape buffers to protect agriculture from negative impacts related to on-site activities such as drainage, pathways or driveways.
  • Design urban development to reduce density and intensity of use when adjacent agricultural land.
  • Design subdivisions to minimize land use adjacency conflict (e.g avoid road endings or road frontage next to agricultural land).
  • Require statutory covenants on non-agricultural land at sub-division to notify landowners that ‘normal farm practices occur in close proximity’.
  • All lands abutting the ALR require a Level 5 Landscape Buffer Treatment.

Once a Development Permit is issued, an application for a Building Permit may be made.