Here’s how to apply to the Committee of Adjustment to:
- adjust a property boundary
- create a new lot
- apply for a minor variance to Guelph’s Zoning Bylaw
- extend land uses that existed before the City passed its current Zoning Bylaw
Typically it takes 60 to 90 days to process an application. It can take longer if your application is incomplete, or is subject to conditions or appeals.
Please submit all required documents, drawings and fees so we can process your application as quickly as possible.
You can apply for a building permit before you receive the Committee’s decision. Your building permit application must comply with the proposed zoning changes. You must not do any work until the City issues a building permit.
Residential applications for consent or minor variance
Before submitting a residential application for consent or minor variance, we recommend a Preliminary Zoning Review. This is especially helpful if you don’t know which regulations apply to your property. Completed Preliminary Zoning Review forms can be dropped off at the third floor of City Hall or emailed to [email protected].
Check with your neighbours and the City
We suggest you contact your neighbours to discuss your plans. Your neighbours will receive a notice when you submit your application. While your application may be similar to others in your neighbourhood, each application must be reviewed independently using site-specific opportunities and limitations.
To help us process your application as quickly as possible, please contact our Planning Services team and ask to discuss your application to the Committee of Adjustment. As we learn about your application and find out if a minor variance is suitable, or if you need to apply for a Zoning Bylaw Amendment. We’ll also help you connect with other City departments that may need to review your application.
519-822-1260 extension 5616
Please contact our Engineering Services team and ask to discuss your application to the Committee of Adjustment. We’ll find out if we need to make changes to underground water or wastewater services.
519-822-1260 extension 5604
If you are planning to use, handle or store materials that could pose a threat to Guelph’s water supply, we may require you to modify your application.
Submit your application
Please be aware that Minor Variance applications can now be submitted online using the link below.
Applications for Consent may still be submitted by using the PDF form.
Please complete the application form, including all required drawings, documents and fees, and then book an appointment to submit your application.
To book an appointment with the Committee of Adjustment
519-822-1260 extension 2524
Before the public hearing
Within 30 days of receiving your application, we will invite you to a public hearing and provide a sign for you to post on your property. If you are not able to attend the hearing you may send someone to represent you, send written comments, or request for a deferral. About 14 days before the hearing we’ll invite affected agencies, staff from City departments, and property owners within 30 metres (60 metres if the property is not detached).
Before the public hearing, the committee will contact you to tell you when we plan to visit your property for an inspection. You do not have to be present, but please unlock any gates so we can access the property.
To request a deferral
You or your neighbours may request a deferral.
In some cases, we may suggest that you ask for a deferral to allow more time to gather information to support your application. If you accept our recommendation, please attend the scheduled public hearing to request a deferral in person.
The City will charge a fee for any deferral.
At the public hearing
You and/or your agent should attend the hearing to:
- confirm the sign about the public hearing was posted on the property
- confirm that you received comments from City staff
- briefly explain the reasons for your application
- hear all comments and questions from people in attendance
- address comments and questions
If you do not attend, the committee may proceed or defer the application.
At the hearing, the committee will consider your application, comments from the public, and advice from City employees to make the decision to approve, deny, or defer the application.
- Is the proposed variance minor in nature?
- Is the proposed variance desirable for the appropriate development of the lands in question?
- Does the proposed variance maintain the general intent and purpose of the Zoning Bylaw and Official Plan?
- Does the application conform to the lot creation policies of Guelph’s Official Plan?
- Is there access to and frontage on a municipal road?
- Are there enough water and wastewater services?
- Are the location and characteristics of the property suitable?
- Is premature or in the public interest
- Does the application conserve and protect natural resources and farmland?
- Does the application affect the current and future use of surrounding properties?
If your application is approved, the committee may impose conditions as part of its decision.
Notice of decision
Within 10 days making its decision, the committee will mail a notice to you and anyone who filed a written request to receive a copy. The notice includes instructions for anyone who may want to appeal the decision. If no one files an appeal, the decision is final and binding.
When your application is approved and you have met any conditions set out in the final decision, your property is considered compliant with the Zoning Bylaw and the City can issue a building permit.
We’re here to help
If you have any questions please contact us. We can help you understand the documents, plans, or drawings you may need and explain any fees and schedules.Committee of Adjustment
519-822-1260 extension 2524