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Supporting High Quality Main Street Development

At the March 22, 2016 Executive Committee meeting, City staff were asked to review and amend the Pedestrian Commercial Shopping Street Overlay (PCSSO). The purpose of this review is to support high quality, pedestrian-oriented development along Edmonton’s main streets.

Project Stage

This project is currently at the draft amendment stage.

The draft amendments will be brought forward for consideration at the June 23, 2017 Urban Planning Committee meeting. This meeting will provide the Urban Planning Committee with an opportunity to give City staff further guidance before the proposed amendments go to City Council Public Hearing for a final decision.

A target date for the amendments to advance to City Council Public Hearing for a final decision has not yet been set.

What’s Changing?

The draft Overlay contains several themes for change. These include refining the setbacks to promote more pedestrian spaces, incorporating regulations for stepbacks, introducing mixed-use regulations, driveway access restrictions and parking requirement reductions. Additional regulations related to urban design and community consultation were also included.

The draft regulations provide detail on the proposed changes and a map of the proposed area of application.

Project Phases

Stage 1: Setting the Stage
June - August 2016

Stage 2: Main Street Conversations
August - November 2016

Stage 3: Refreshing the Overlay
December 2016 - June 2017

Review draft amendments and areas of application and gather public input​

Stage 4: Implementing the Overlay
Fall 2017 - Winter 2018
Speak at City Council

Current Regulations

An overlay is a set of additional land use regulations that add to the zoning rules of specific areas around the city. These regulations will often supersede the regulations of the base zone, modifying a variety of elements of development, such as height, parking requirements, and landscaping. An overlay can never alter the Permitted or Discretionary Uses, Floor Area Ratio or density of the base zone in effect.

The Pedestrian Commercial Shopping Street Overlay is contained in Section 819 of the Zoning Bylaw. The regulations focus on different aspects of building design that help create high quality main streets. The overlay currently applies to areas along Whyte Avenue, Fort Road, areas downtown along 97 Street and Norwood Boulevard and along 98th Avenue.

There is a similar overlay, specific to Alberta Avenue, called the Alberta Avenue Pedestrian Commercial Shopping Street Overlay, which is contained in Section 821. City staff will also be reviewing this Overlay for content and opportunity for collaboration between the two sets of regulations.

Public Consultation

The City of Edmonton is committed to citizen engagement.

During February and March 2017, City staff conducted several pop-up engagement events to receive feedback and provide information on the proposed Main Streets Overlay.

Edmontonians had the opportunity to provide additional input by responding to an online survey from February 16 to March 6, 2017. The survey results were compiled into a What We Heard Report.   

Input provided by Edmontonians will help us refine the areas of application and the specific regulations to guide high quality development in Edmonton’s main streets.

Residents can also share their views directly with members of City Council by requesting to speak at an Urban Planning Committee and/or City Council Public Hearing meeting.

For More Information

Robert Rutherford

Title Planner, Zoning Bylaw



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