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Department of

Planning & Building Services

The Planning & Building Services Department is responsible for matters pertaining to the use and development of land within the City of Barrie. The department maintains and administers the City's two principle planning instruments; the  Official Plan and the Zoning By-law.

Planning Services

Planning Services, located on the first floor of City Hall, is responsible for the preparation of long range planning and research studies pertaining to policy related issues that affect the use and development of land within the City.  These studies relate to the development of planning policy on matters ranging from environmental protection, heritage conservation, downtown revitalization and economic development.

Planning Services also issues Permitted Use Letters.  A permitted use letter is written confirmation of the zoning and permitted uses at a subject property.  The letter is often requested by a business owner to confirm that their proposed business is permitted on a specific property.  The letter does not confirm compliance with any other regulations set out in the Barrie Zoning By-law.  If you require a Permitted Use Letter, please fill out the form and bring it to Planning Services, 1st floor City Hall, along with the required fee.  Request for Permitted Use Letter.pdf

The department is also responsible for reviewing, processing and making recommendations to City Council on applications for development or re-development of land within the City, and for administering the Financial Incentives Program in the City's historic downtown core.

Policy Planning, Research and Special Studies

  • Preparation of the City of Barrie Official Plan.
  • Preparation of Secondary Plans.
  • Review of applications and recommendations related to proposed changes to the City's Official Plan and Zoning By-law.
  • Research and Special Studies related to land use issues.
  • Review and Recommendations re: Façade and Streetscape Program

Development Services

  • Review and Recommendations re: Plan of Subdivision applications.
  • Review and Recommendations re: Site Plan applications.
  • Review and Recommendations re: Committee of Adjustments applications.

Technical Services

  • Population and Land Use Statistics
  • The Subdivision Paper outlining the status of subdivisions and their mix of housing  
  • Official Plan Schedules (maps)
  • Zoning By-law Schedules (maps)
Part Lot Control Exemption Policy

The Planning Act states that part of a lot or block on a registered plan of subdivision cannot be transferred separately from the rest of the lot or block without the municipality's approval.  The Part Lot Control provisions of the Planning Act allow a municipality to pass bylaws to remove or exempt part lot control from all or any part of a registered plan of subdivision.  Such a bylaw has the effect of allowing the conveyance of a portion of a lot or block without requiring the approval of the Committee of Adjustment for land division.  A Part Lot Control Exemption Policy is in place to assist in the review and d​ecision making on such applications.


Building Services

The Building Services Branch is located on the 8th floor of City Hall and provides the following services:

  • Processes applications and conducts site inspections for building permits, septic permits, sign structure permitspool enclosure permits and retaining wall permits.
  • Investigates complaints of construction without a permit, construction contrary to the Building Code, or of buildings in an unsafe condition, enforcing compliance as warranted.
  • Investigates complaints relating to lot grading in new subdivisions to confirm compliance with the Subdivider’s Agreement.
  • Provides building construction information as requested for property transactions and general enquiries.

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