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What’s Changed?

City Council approved changes to the Zoning Bylaw regulations governing the height and grade of buildings with the adoption of Bylaw 16733 and Bylaw 17062 on July 8, 2015. Changes apply to every standard zone and overlay in the city and will be implemented as property owners and builders come forward with development applications. 

The changes are part of ongoing work to align Zoning Bylaw regulations with consumer preference for more choice in residential housing. Additional height regulation changes are slated to go before City Council later this year.

Project Stage

The project began in February 2013.

The following three factors were taken into consideration throughout the amendment process:

Stakeholder Engagement

The City is committed to involving the people affected by the decisions it makes. Consultation has been ongoing since February 2013 with the following stakeholders playing a key role in sharing information and providing feedback on amendments:

  • Edmonton Federation of Community Leagues (EFCL)
  • Canadian Home Builders Association (CHBA)
  • Urban Development Institute (UDI)
  • Infill Development in Edmonton Association (IDEA)
  • Architects specializing in architectural controls for new neighbourhoods
  • Internal City Departments, including CityLab, Neighbourhood Planning, Urban Design, Heritage, Development Officers, and Drainage Services
  • Edmonton Residents

Project History

2015

July 9: Regulation changes come into effect
Regulation changes in Bylaw 16733 and Bylaw 17062 officially come into effect.  Changes apply to every standard zone and overlay in the city and will be implemented as property owners and builders come forward with development applications.

Work to align Zoning Bylaw regulations with consumer preference for more choice in residential housing remains ongoing, with additional height regulation changes slated to go before City Council later this year.

July 8: Special Executive Committee Meeting
City Council adopts Part 1 - Draft Bylaw 16733 (July 6, 2015) and Part 2 - Draft Bylaw 17062 (July 6, 2015), with motions for the following changes:

For the flat roof type, Height shall be determined by measuring from the horizontal plane through Grade to the midpoint of the highest parapet, provided the resulting top of the parapet is no more than 0.4 m above the maximum Height allowed in the zone or overlay.

That Bylaw 17062 be amended by deleting from Section 1(d)(52)(2)(c) "2.5 m" and replacing it with "1.5 m".

July 6: City Council Public Hearing

City Council defers Part 1 – Draft Bylaw 16733 (July 6, 2015) and Part 2 - Draft Bylaw 17062 (July 6, 2015) to the July 8, 2015 Special Executive Committee meeting.  Revisions made to the draft bylaws since the March 24, 2015 Executive Committee meeting are highlighted in yellow within the documents. 

Previously proposed changes to the Special Information Requirement regulations and the Mature Neighbourhood Overlay (MNO) are removed from Draft Bylaw 16733.  A separate bylaw is drafted to address changes to the Special Information Requirement regulations, which City Council approves on July 6, 2015.  

March 24: Executive Committee
City Council directs Part 1 – Draft Bylaw 16733 (January 26, 2015) and Part 2 - Draft Bylaw 17062 (February 9, 2015) to City Council Public Hearing with the following motion: 

That Administration amend Bylaw 16733 and Bylaw 17062 to incorporate a maximum peak roof height limit that would apply to the Mature Neighbourhood Overlay areas, and would treat Mansard roof heights the same as flat roofs, and re-advertise the amended bylaws to return to the earliest possible City Council Public Hearing.

March 10: Executive Committee
Executive Committee defers Part 1 – Draft Bylaw 16733 (January 26, 2015) and Part 2 - Draft Bylaw 17062 (February 9, 2015) to the March 24, 2015 Executive Committee meeting. 

March 4: Open house
The City hosts an open house at City Hall to share information with Edmontonians on the changes proposed in Part 1 – Draft Bylaw 16733 (January 26, 2015) and Part 2 - Draft Bylaw 17062 (February 9, 2015). Through a series of twelve display boards, the proposed changes are presented in plain language with supporting graphics. Participants are provided with feedback forms to formalize their comments.

All comments received are summarized into a feedback report.  A copy of the feedback report is added to the March 10, 2015 Executive committee package.

Mid-February to early March: Public Hearing follow-up
To help address concerns raised, the City provides written response to everyone who submitted comments at the February 9 and January 26 Public Hearings. A presentation on the proposed amendments is given to the Central Area Council of Community Leagues (CACCL) and the Riverdale Community League, and feedback is collected.

February 9: Public Hearing
Part 2 - City Council directs Part 2- Draft Bylaw 17062 (February 9, 2015) to the March 10 Executive Committee meeting for broader discussion and direction.

January 26: Public Hearing
City Council directs Part 1 – Draft Bylaw 16733 (January 26, 2015) to the March 10 Executive Committee meeting for broader discussion and direction.

2014

November
Based on stakeholder feedback from the September 2014 circulation, Bylaw 16733 (fall 2014) is modified and split into two parts to reduce complexity and increase clarity and understanding of the proposed changes.

Amendments under contention are removed to create Part 1 – Draft Bylaw 16733 (January 26, 2015). Additional new ideas put forward by development industry representatives are presented to the Edmonton Federation of Community Leagues. Some of the proposed changes are advanced as Draft Bylaw 17062 (February 9, 2015). 

September
On September 19, 2014, Bylaw 16733 (fall 2014) is released for review and feedback. Feedback from the circulation of the third draft indicates that stakeholders support the bylaw in principle, but that there are differing opinions on the level of height regulation required, particularly in mature neighbourhoods.

March
Bylaw 16733 (spring 2014) is released for review and feedback. Feedback received from stakeholders on the first draft is used to inform the second draft.

January
Bylaw 16733 (winter 2014) is circulated to stakeholders for review and feedback.

2013

August 
Administration conducts stakeholder consultations to explore how the City could improve the way height and grade is regulated. This scoping exercise helps identify many issues and opportunities, which are turned into the objectives and guiding principles for the amendments.

February
Development industry members approach City Administration to express concerns about how the current Zoning Bylaw regulations do not accommodate change in market demand and building technology, making it difficult to obtain development approval in both new and established neighbourhoods.

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