Participate in city planning

Citizens, businesses, community groups are encouraged to participate in City planning decisions to discuss how new developments may affect neighbouring properties and the larger community.

Proposed development in your neighbourhood

Public meetings                       

When the City receives a proposed development application, we conduct a complete technical review and then host a public meeting for City Council, citizens and community groups to learn more, ask questions and comment on the proposed development project.

Typically, meetings about planning matters take place in Council Chambers at City Hall on the second Monday of every month at 7 p.m.

View City Council meeting schedule

Speak at a meeting or provide written comments

If you wish to speak to City Council about an application, please contact the City Clerk’s Office at 519-837-5603 or email clerks@guelph.ca to register as a delegation.

You can bring printed photos or plans, and we can project them on a screen. To use a PowerPoint presentation, please send the files to the City Clerk’s Office in advance of the meeting.

Anyone attending the meeting is welcome to speak to City Council. Speakers are asked to provide their name, address, and the name of any group or organization they may represent.

If you prefer, you can send written comments to the City Clerk’s Office, clerks@guelph.ca in advance of the meeting, and your comments will be included when City Council discusses the application.

During the meeting

City Council may discuss more than one planning application during a meeting.

To receive project updates, future meeting notices and/or decisions about a planning application, please add your name, email and/or mailing address to the appropriate sign-in sheet near the entrance of Council Chambers.

For each planning application:

  • City staff gives an overview, describes any areas of concern, and identifies issues needing further review or study.
  • The applicant describes the proposed development, key studies and reports, and provides reasons for the application.
  • Each registered delegation may address City Council for up to ten minutes.
  • Anyone attending the meeting is invited to address City Council for up to 10 minutes.
  • City Council may ask the applicant and/or City staff for more information.

No decisions on the application are made during the public meeting. City Council directs staff to address the matters raised during the meeting and report back with a recommendation.

City Council votes to receive the report describing the application.

Sometimes, in response to technical concerns or other questions raised during a statutory public meeting, the applicant may update their development application. Depending on the nature of the changes, a second public meeting may be required.

City Council decision meeting

When the application addresses any outstanding technical issues and/or areas of concern, City staff presents its report and recommendation during another City Council meeting.

Anyone who addressed City Council or provided written comments before or during a previous public meeting may address City Council again and/or provide additional written comments during the decision meeting.

If you provided written comments or participated in a previous public meeting:

  • You will receive a meeting notice;
  • You are welcome to address City Council for up to 5 minutes—you must contact the City Clerk’s office and register as a delegation

City Council receives the report and makes one of the following decisions to:

  • Adopt City staff’s recommendation;
  • Amend the recommendation;
  • Reject the recommendation;
  • Refer the development application back to City staff for further consideration and/or information.

Appealing a decision

If you provided written comments or participated in a public meeting about the application, and you disagree with City Council’s decision, you can appeal the decision to the Ontario Municipal Board (OMB).

Resources

Ontario’s citizens’ guide to land use planning
Ontario Municipal Board