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Delays In the Approval Process

November 2022
  • Inten­si­fi­ca­tion of land leads to addi­tion­al reg­u­la­tions, which adds lay­ers of addi­tion­al tech­ni­cal review.
  • High­ly tech­ni­cal reg­u­lat­ed process with sev­er­al inter­nal and exter­nal stakeholders.
  • Build­ing per­mits are a leg­is­lat­ed func­tion that munic­i­pal­i­ties must admin­is­ter. The reg­u­la­to­ry frame­work and require­ments are laid out in the Build­ing Code Act and the Ontario Build­ing Code. A build­ing per­mit is the reg­u­la­to­ry instru­ment which ensures the municipality’s by-laws and poli­cies — as well as dozens of oth­er pieces of Provin­cial Leg­is­la­tion — are being fol­lowed. A build­ing per­mit is the last approval need­ed before con­struc­tion can proceed.
  • Com­mu­ni­ca­tion between the var­i­ous groups charged with over­see­ing each act, reg­u­la­tion or by-law hap­pens incre­men­tal­ly. At times, these steps aren’t iden­ti­fied until oth­er process­es have begun. Smooth­ing out the links between reg­u­la­to­ry agen­cies is key to reduc­ing delays and stream­lin­ing the approval process.
  • The Build­ing Code requires that oth­er provin­cial acts, reg­u­la­tions, and munic­i­pal by-laws are fol­lowed. Col­lec­tive­ly, these pieces of reg­u­la­tion are known in the Build­ing Code as Applic­a­ble Law.” Applic­a­ble Law con­sists of oth­er pieces of leg­is­la­tion regard­ing the envi­ron­men­tal stew­ard­ship, arche­o­log­i­cal arti­facts, flood­ing con­trol, her­itage des­ig­na­tions, as well as cer­tain local by-laws. The appli­ca­tion of these laws dif­fers depend­ing on the loca­tion, envi­ron­men­tal con­straints, nature of con­struc­tion and use type. The Applic­a­ble Laws are nec­es­sary to ensure safe and order­ly devel­op­ment. From a build­ing depart­ment per­spec­tive, obtain­ing per­mis­sions relat­ed to the Applic­a­ble Laws is what leads to addi­tion­al delays and the per­cep­tion of red tape when an appli­cant is obtain­ing a build­ing permit.