The development process is a dynamic process that guides how our city changes and grows as an attractive place to live and do business.
The development process is a dynamic process that begins with raw land and ends with a finished development.
Edmonton’s Zoning Bylaw is the rule book for all development that occurs within the city. It sets out the location and size of buildings that can be constructed on private property and the types of activities that can take place on those properties.
The City of Edmonton’s building and development process is also guided by The City Plan, Area Redevelopment Plans and expert guidance from architects, urban planners, engineers and our citizens.
Development permits, building permits and inspections are the main tools used by the City of Edmonton to support safe and effective growth. Learn more about these in our Developing Edmonton video series.
Zoning regulates how we use land and helps ensure what is built is compatible with the surrounding area. It looks at:
What types of buildings can be built
What activities and businesses can happen there
Requirements for things such as landscaping
Zoning considers building operations/use but not the user. Any information about who can live or work in the buildings, or whether the property is rented or owned cannot be taken into consideration as part of a rezoning application review.
What is Zoning
booklet outlines what zoning is, how it shapes our community, and what the different types of zones are. For more detail, please see the Zoning Bylaw.
Zoning Types and Definitions
The Zoning Bylaw includes the following types of zones:
Residential - There are many kinds of homes that are allowed under different types of residential zoning, including single-family houses, secondary suites, row housing and apartments. Some zones also allow for different types of home-based businesses, like child care.
Industrial - This includes manufacturing, processing, assembly, distribution, and service and repair.
Commercial - These can allow businesses in neighbourhoods, like corner stores. There are also commercial zones for big box stores and shopping centres along highways. There are seven different commercial zones in Edmonton.
Urban Services - This includes zones for schools, water and drainage services, electric distribution, public transportation, parks, hospitals, cemeteries, and government services.
Agriculture and Reserve - This identifies places for urban agriculture and rural land use. These zones often apply at the edges of the city, where development has not occurred yet.
Specialty -This includes Direct Control Zones and Special Area Zones. These zones are specific to a particular piece of land or area, and are written to support types of development that cannot be built under other zones. For example, Special Area Zones exist for Downtown, Griesbach, and Blatchford. Direct Control zones can be created for places with a unique character or special historical designation.
If you have concerns surrounding a specific development in your community, please see the following information on the City’s procedures, processes, and recourse options:
Development Process Guide