Port Moody's Zoning Bylaw and Official Community Plan (OCP) regulate land use and density. Every property in the City has a zoning classification that specifies the types of uses or activities that can take place. If you want to make changes to your property that don't align with land uses or density permitted under the Zoning Bylaw or OCP, you will need to apply for approval from Council for a land use change.

OCP amendment

The OCP describes the long-term vision for the City. It is reviewed approximately every ten years, but Council can consider and approve minor changes, or amendments, at any time. An example of a development project that could require an OCP amendment would be if an owner wanted to build a mixed-use (commercial/residential) development on a property that is designated for multi-family use. 

See Official Community Plan to learn more about the guidelines that may apply to development on your property. 

Rezoning

If a property owner wants to build on or use a property in ways that differ significantly from what the current zoning allows, they would need to apply to have the property rezoned. An example of a development project that could require rezoning would be if an owner wanted to build townhouses on property currently zoned for single detached residences.

See Zoning Bylaw to learn more about the uses and rules that may apply to development on your property. You can also use the interactive ViewPort map to see the zoning designation for your property. In the layers legend, ensure you click the check boxes next to ‘Planning’ and 'Zoning', then the relevant layers below it to turn on/off the visibility of the zoning layers.

Application process

1) Pre-application review

As the first step in an OCP amendment or rezoning application we recommend that you apply for a pre-application review prior to submitting your subsequent more complex application. This preliminary review provides a coordinated response from relevant City departments to help provide early identification of any major development considerations. You will also be provided the opportunity to present your tentative proposal to Council for their early input.

See Pre-Application Review to learn how you can submit an application.

2) Submit an OCP amendment and/or rezoning application

Prior to submitting an OCP amendment and/or rezoning application, we recommend that you consult with City planning staff by phone or email to make sure that you have all of the necessary paperwork. This will help you save time during the application process.

Completed application forms and supporting documentation should be submitted by email to planning@portmoody.ca. If your files are too large for email, staff will provide an online upload link. If you are unable to digitally submit your application, please call or email to schedule an in person appointment.

Submissions will be vetted for completeness before payment is processed.

 Application form and submission requirements

In cases where an OCP amendment is required as part of your rezoning, both applications can be made on the same development application form. 

OCP amendment and rezoning applications should include:

  • completed OCP amendment and/or rezoning application (PDF)
  • application fee – Fees Bylaw
  • Certificate of Title dated no more than 30 days prior to the application
  • Letter of Intent that outlines the current use, proposed use, and justification for the proposal
  • report and plan detailing the proposal and demonstrating its feasibility and assessing its impact
  • Site Survey, prepared by a licensed BC Land Surveyor
  • detailed Site Plan
  • Site Servicing Plan prepared by a professional engineer
  • letter from a Registered Professional or Certified Energy Advisor, confirming that the project has been designed to achieve the chosen pathway outlined in the BC Energy Step Code Rezoning Application Corporate Policy
  • Affordable Housing Proposal: See Interim Affordable Housing Guidelines (PDF) for expectations on the provision of affordable housing units as part of new multi-family residential and mixed-use residential development applications that involve a rezoning or an Official Community Plan amendment.

In addition to the above requirements, rezoning applications should also include:

  • Site profile, if required by the Environmental Management Act, Contaminated Sites Regulations, Schedule 2
  • Arborist's Preliminary Site Assessment
  • elevation drawings showing all building sides, dimensions, grades, exterior finish details and signage
  • colour perspective drawing illustrating the building form and streetscape
  • a three-dimensional model (digital or physical)
  • Landscape Plan, prepared by a Landscape Designer or Landscape Architect
  • colour photographs of the current site
  • material samples showing the proposed exterior finish colours
  • Sustainability Report Card

For rezoning applications that also require a development permit for the proposed form and character, the development permit application is expected to be submitted for review with the rezoning application.

Application Review

Once your application has been submitted, it will be reviewed by a variety of internal departments, external agencies, advisory committees, community members, and Council for consideration of approval. You will be given an opportunity to revise your proposal based on feedback received throughout the process. This process can take between six and twenty-four months, though the timing may vary depending on a number of factors, including: complexity of the proposal, quality of submissions, application volume etc.

Additionally, this process includes a review of any required development permits, and drafting of a Housing Agreement or a Development Agreement to confirm arrangements between the City and the applicant agreed to as part of the land use change. Note that for projects that include Affordable Housing you may be eligible for Development Cost Charge (DCC) reductions.

When reviewing your application for land use changes, the City will consider such key topics as commitments for energy efficiency and sustainability, economic development and jobs, affordable housing options, Community Amenity Contributions, and inclusion of art in the project. Moreover, for projects exceeding a FAR of 2.5, a Density Bonus formula in the Zoning Bylaw requires a contribution based on the increase in land value to offset the impacts of growth and development.

As part of the application review process you will be required to hold one or more Community Information Meetings to inform the neighbourhood or community of your proposal as well as provide an opportunity for feedback on the proposal.