FAQ for Development Approvals

As the COVID-19 situation in Hamilton continues to evolve, these FAQ will be regularly updated as circumstances change to provide residents and developers with current information.

City of Hamilton COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

(Last Updated July 6, 2020)

Planning staff are still accepting and processing planning applications, with the exception of Committee of Adjustment applications (e.g. Minor Variances and Consents) which are being accepted but will not be processed until such time as a determination has been made on future meetings of the Committee.

Applications that have been delegated to staff for review and approval (i.e. Formal Consultation, Site Plan, Part Lot Control, Holding Removal, Condominium (Standard), Heritage Permits, Sign Variance) are being processed and decisions are being issued on these applications.

Applications that require public participation prior to a decision (Official Plan Amendments, Zoning By-law Amendments, Plans of Subdivision or Condominium (Standard, Vacant Land) are being received and processed. These applications will be brought forward to Planning Committee upon the resumption of the standing committees.

Planning inquiries can be sent by email to [email protected] or by phone at 905-546-2424 extension 1355. Please leave a detailed message  including the address of the property you are inquiring about. The inquiry will be assigned to the appropriate planning staff to reply.

As City Hall is closed to the public at this time,  you have two options to submit your applications and resubmissions:

  • For paper resubmissions, documents can be sent to City Hall by courier or Canada Post. Please ensure that your parcel clearly indicates your file reviewers name. Any hand-delivered submissions can utilize our secure drop box at the rear doors of City Hall. Please note this is a multi-purpose drop box so please address your parcel to your file reviewer. Note it is recommended that the drop box be used for small parcels and that larger parcels be sent via courier or Canada Post. 
  • For digital resubmissions, a copy of the resubmitted documents can be uploaded to the CitySHARE platform. Please contact via email your file reviewer to obtain a personalized link to upload your documents for your file.

Please submit your Planning Applications through the City’s CitySHARE Platform.

At the present time, all Planning Committee meetings have been cancelled, and no statutory meetings under the Planning Act are being scheduled.

Staff are reviewing whether it is possible to re-introduce Planning Committee meetings as virtual meetings, while still meeting legislated requirements for public participation and will advise further if and when virtual Planning Committee meetings will be scheduled.

At the present time, all Committee of Adjustment meetings have been cancelled. Staff are reviewing whether it is possible to re-introduce Committee of Adjustment meetings as virtual meetings, while still meeting legislated requirements for public participation and will advise further if and when virtual Committee of Adjustment meetings will be scheduled.

Normal timelines and fees continue to apply with respect to any extensions to Site Plan approvals. Any site plans that are lapsing are required to pay an extension fee. Inquiries can be sent directly to the Planner assigned to the file who will provide further instructions. Alternatively, an email can be sent to [email protected], please include your file number, which will be forwarded to the Planner assigned to the file.

Please forward all requests to [email protected]. Ensure to  include the file number and address.

All matters concerning development related construction activity may be directed to 905-546-2424, extension 7860 or alternatively, an email may be sent to [email protected].

For inquiries related to site alteration or lot grading, an email may be sent to [email protected].

All matters regarding Development Engineering Approvals such as subdivision, site plans and agreements, water and sewer permits etc., can be sent to Helen McArthur at [email protected] (for subdivisions) or Zivko Panovski at [email protected] (for Site Plans and Permits) and copy to [email protected].

Payments for permits can be made either by cheque or credit card. Cheques can be sent by courier or Canada Post. Please ensure that your parcel clearly indicates your file reviewer’s name. To ensure health and safety guidelines, hand-delivered payments can utilize the secure drop box at the rear doors of City Hall. Please note this is a multi-purpose drop box so please address your parcel to your file reviewer. If paying by credit card, contact the reviewer directly for instructions on how to proceed.

As City Hall is closed to the public at this time, you have two options to submit all applications and resubmissions:

  • For paper resubmissions, documents can be sent to City Hall by courier or Canada Post. Please ensure that your parcel clearly indicates your file reviewers name. Any hand-delivered submissions can utilize our secure drop box at the rear doors of City Hall. Please note this is a multi-purpose drop box so please address your parcel to your file reviewer. Note it is recommended that the drop box be used for small parcels and that larger parcels be sent via courier or Canada Post. 
  • For digital resubmissions, a copy of the resubmitted documents can be uploaded to the CitySHARE platform. After uploading your files please send an email to the file reviewer and copy [email protected], (for Subdivisions) and [email protected] (for Site Plans and Permits), with the weblink and project details so that the appropriate files can be downloaded.

Yes. Staff continues to process all approvals that are within the delegated authority of the City of Hamilton. Plan registrations are processed by the Provincial Land Registry Office, which is subject to reduced hours of operation (currently Monday to Friday 9 am to 12 pm EST).

Staff are also continuing to post / distribute draft plan notices per standard timelines.

Please contact George Zajac at [email protected].

Yes. All site alteration permits continue to be processed. Inquiries can be sent to [email protected].

This relates to things like servicing of new development that has been deemed essential by the Province (e.g. residential projects).

Growth Management will be releasing contractors to complete servicing for any projects that meets the Provincial Order for essential businesses, regardless of the status of the project. We will be determining and updating our essential service based on the following requirements:

  • All servicing associated with any building permit that has been deemed essential (include sidewalks); and
  • Any servicing that must be completed in advance of a City capital project that is deemed essential.

Note that all existing City requirements must still be met before any project can commence.

Please contact Paul Toffoletti or David Tsai via email at [email protected] or [email protected].

Please contact George Zajac or Alvin Chan vie email at [email protected] or [email protected].

The Building Division at 905-546-2720.

Yes

As City Hall is currently closed to the public, you have three options to submit all applications and resubmissions: Canada Post, courier or through our online building permit application system at https://eplans.hamilton.ca/.

To ensure health and safety guidelines, there is also a secure mail box at the rear doors of City Hall available for submissions. Please note this is a multi-purpose standard mail box for small parcels only; large parcels are to be sent via Canada Post or courier. 

All hardcopy submissions must be securely packaged and addressed to the name of the plan reviewer, Building Division, 3rd Floor.

Currently you are permitted to continue construction as the Provincial Order has been lifted.  If the order is reinstated or another order issued this could alter or prohibit construction to continue.

The ability to continue construction is subject to the Provincial Order. It is the obligation of the permit holder to ensure their business, and any construction conducted under the permit, complies with the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act, as amended, and all associated regulations and orders which can be reviewed at https://www.ontario.ca/laws/statute/90e09. The Province has launched a toll-free line 1-888-444-3659 to assist Ontario businesses that are seeking clarity with respect to the requirements of the Provincial Order.

Should the Provincial Order be reinstated prohibiting construction sites to stay open the City of Hamilton Building Inspectors will be enforcing the order.  If the order is reinstated or another order issued residents can report it by contacting 905-546-2489.

The Provincial Order has been lifted and all construction can commence in accordance with the Ontario Building Code requirements.  If the order is reinstated or another order issued, this could alter this.

Yes, and the request will be completed, and information released once the Provincial Order is lifted.

The Province has, effectively, “frozen” the timelines for making decisions under the Planning Act. Regulation O. Reg. 149/20 https://www.ontario.ca/laws/regulation/r20149 states that, virtually all time periods under the Planning Act are suspended from March 17 until the close of the emergency and any appeals that happened to have been filed during that time are deemed “unfiled”. All required notices of decision are extended to 10-15 days after the end of the emergency, whenever that may be.