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Development Review
Process & Forms

Guided by the City’s planning framework, the investment of property owners, development industry and community service partners brings the City’s vision to life. Ultimately, it's these owners and partners who design and build the places where we live, work, learn, shop, and play.

Zoning Compliance Letter Requests

A Zoning Compliance Letter provides information the City may have ​with respect to the status of zoning on a property. This includes Zoning Designation and By-laws Pertaining to the Planning Act. Zoning Compliance Letters do not include information on Building Code Orders or status of permits. To obtain a Zoning Compliance Letter, please complete the Compliance Letter Request Form ​ and submit payment (as per the City of Barrie Fees By-law) to Service Barrie. ​

Permitted Use Letter

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 visit to apply online.


To apply in person, please submit a completed Permitted Use Letter Request Form and submit payment (as per the City of Barrie Fees By-law) to Service Barrie. ​

Development Applications

Applications for each of the following go through the Development Review Process.

Official Plan Amendment and Zoning By-law Amendment Applications

Both the City of Barrie Official Plan and the Zoning By-law can be amended through a public process. The goal of this process is assess whether the proposed amendment is in keeping with the long-term vision and goals for how our community should grow and to ensure that members of the public who may be affected by the proposed amendment have an opportunity to make their views on the matter heard.

Application - Official Plan Amendment and Rezoning​

Plan of Subdivision Applications

The division of a parcel of land into multiple lots (which can then be sold) requires approval of a plan of subdivision. This approval process helps ensure that:

  • the land in question is suitable for the proposed new use
  • the proposed development conforms with the City's Official Plan and with provincial plans and policy
  • residents are protected from development that may be inappropriate or that might place strain on municipal services, facilities, or financial resources.

The City of Barrie has been delegated authority by the Ministry of Municipal Affairs to approve draft plans of subdivision (Ontario Regulation 417/01 under the Planning Act). The approval process is provided for under section 51 of the Planning Act. Section 51 also applies to the approval of a Plan of Condominium (under subs.9(2) of the Condominium Act).

Application for Approval of Plan of Subdivison

Application for Plan of Condominium Approval or Exemption

Application for Extension or Revision to Draft Approved Plan of Subdivision or Condo  

Application for Pre-Servicing Agreement

Applications for Plan of Subdivision Approval, for Council Review of a Draft Approved Plan of Subdivision, and for Plan of Condominium Approval or Exemption can be submitted to the City Clerk's Office on the first floor of City Hall, 70 Collier Street. Once a complete application has been received, processing the application may take 6–8 months.

Site Plan Approval Applications

Provided for under section 41 of the Planning Act, Site Plan Control helps ensure that development in the urban environment takes place in a safe, efficient, convenient, and aesthetically pleasing manner, and that new development is compatible with existing neighbouring properties. Among other things, Site Plan Control regulates the placement of buildings and structures on a lot, the relationship of structures to adjacent properties and streets, and matters of exterior design.

A significant portion of land within the City of Barrie is subject to Site Plan Control. If a property is located within a designated Site Plan Control area, then an application for Site Plan Approval is necessary before any development can take place on that property. (For the purposes of Site Plan Control, “development" includes erecting new buildings, adding to or altering an existing building in a way that substantially increase its size or usability, and establishing a commercial parking lot.)

Development or alteration of any lands that are designated within a Site Plan Control Area are subject to the Site Plan Approval process, unless otherwise exempt by the Director of Planning and Building Services.  Exemptions from the Full Site Plan Approval process may be considered for minor development and/or site alterations on lands subject to Site Plan Control in accordance with this process and at the discretion of the Director of Planning and Building Services, or their designate.  Within the City of Barrie, minor development and/or site alterations may include, but shall not be limited to exterior building façade improvements/alterations, minor building additions, exterior patio additions, minor parking lot additions/alterations and temporary sales trailers. 

If the property is not located within a Site Plan Control area, then the owner can proceed to apply for a building permit (subject to zoning confirmation and other applicable municipal requirements.)

Site Plan Control Approval Application

Site Plan Application Manual

Application for Pre-Servicing Agreement

Application for Exemption from Full Site Plan Approval

Exemption from Full Site Plan Approval Process

Application for Detached Accessory Dwelling Unit (DADU) Scoped Site Plan Approval

Process Guide for DADU Scoped Site Plan Approval​

The following applications can be made online through APLI:

  • Site Plan Approval
  • Exemption from Full Site Plan Approval
  • Zoning By-law Amendments
  • Official Plan Amendments
  • Plans of Subdivision or Condominium
  • Pre-Consultation and Conformity Review
  • Consent
  • Minor Variance

The Development Review Process

Development applications undergo a review process that includes the following steps. Required forms/applications are linked appropriately below.

1. Pre-consultation

The pre-consultation stage of the review process provides applicants with an opportunity to present their development proposals and concept plans to City Staff.

The pre-consultation review process gives staff the chance to:

  • identify key issues and provide preliminary written comments regarding the proposal;
  • clarify the application process and fees for the applicant; and
  • identify and confirm the plans, supporting studies, and other information that will need to be provided in order for the full development application to be considered complete.

Pre-Consultation Application Form: Site Plan Control

Pre-Consultation Application Form: Official Plan Amendments, Zoning By-law Amendments, and Plan of Subdivision/Condominium

Once a complete Pre-Consultation Application has been submitted, it is circulated to the pertinent City departments and external agencies for review and commentary. A review committee meeting between the applicant, City staff, and any necessary outside agencies will be scheduled within a minimum of four weeks from a complete application being submitted.

A complete Pre-consultation Application and a pre-consultation meeting are required before a development application can be submitted.

2. Neighbourhood Meeting

The City of Barrie requires an informal Neighbourhood Meeting prior to an application for Official Plan Amendments and Zoning By-law Amendments, and applications for Plan of Subdivision Approval (this requirement was established by Council Resolution 14-G-225). The Applicant is required to host a neighbourhood meeting in conjunction with Planning Services. This provides the public with an opportunity to ask questions and receive information about the application. No decisions on the application are made at these meetings.

Applicants must address the feedback received through the public consultation process in the Planning Justification Report (required as part of a complete application) by:

  • detailing how the comments have been addressed in the submission; or,
  • providing justification as to why comments have not been addressed in the submission.

Notice of the meeting is sent by regular mail to property owners located within 240 metres of the subject lands and emailed to residents of the applicable ward who have signed up to receive corporate e-bulletins. Neighbourhood Meetings are also promoted via:

3. Complete Application

Following pre-consultation, City staff will provide the applicant with a list of the studies and reports that must be included with the application in order for it to be considered complete. A list of the studies that may be required can be found on page 6–29 of the Official Plan and below. These studies help staff assess the potential impacts of the proposed amendment in order to make an informed recommendation on the application.​

Planning Justification Report

Affordable Housing Report

Archaeological Study

Environmental Impact Study

Functional Servicing Report

Geotechnical Study

Heritage Impact Assessment​

Historic Neighbourhood Character Impact Evaluation​

Hydrogeological Study

Illumination Study

Market Study

Noise-Vibration Impact Analysis

Shadow-Shadowing Study

Stormwater Management Report

Transportation Impact Study​​

Transportation Impact Study Guidelines

Tree Preservation Plan

Urban Design Report

Wind Study

Energy Conservation and Efficiency

4​​. Public Notice

As part of the complete application process, a Public Notice sign must be posted on the lands that are the subject of the application. The Planning & Building Services Department has requirements for the positioning of the Public Notice sign on the property, as well as a guide to the symbols displayed on the sign:

The applicant is responsible for all costs associated with preparing and posting the Public Notice.

5. Public Meeting

As required under the Planning Act, a formal Public Meeting regarding the application will be held in front of General Committee. At this meeting, the applicant will make a presentation regarding the proposed amendment, and members of the public will have a chance to speak and to ask questions. Members of the public can also make written submissions if they are unable to attend the meeting. No decisions are made at this meeting.

Notice of the Public Meeting is sent by regular mail to property owners located within 120 metres of the subject lands; a sign is also posted on the subject lands.

6. Technical Recommendation & Council Decision

In addition to conducting their own technical review, Planning staff circulate the application to other City departments and to relevant outside agencies (such as Conservation Authorities or provincial ministries) for commentary.

Following this review, Planning staff submits a report making a recommendation to General Committee regarding the proposed amendment. General Committee will consider this report and then make a recommendation to City Council, which will decide on the application.

Once an application has been received and confirmed as complete, it is assigned to an individual File Manager. This “one-window" approach gives the applicant a single point of contact with City staff during the review process. Details regarding the applications will be listed under Proposed Developments.



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