Get ready to spring into action with the all-new "Spring Building Spotlight" guide, brought to you by the Municipality’s Planning Department! This exhilarating resource is your ultimate go-to guide for all the planning and zoning information you need to embark on your fantastic summer building projects. Whether you're dreaming of a marvelous deck to soak up the sun, a charming porch to welcome guests, a handy shed to store your treasures, a refreshing pool to beat the heat, or a stylish fence to enhance your property, this guide has got you covered!

Spring Building Spotlight PDF

General Information - Before You Get Started

Step 1: Find out what your property is zoned

The Municipality has an Online Mapping Tool that you can use to determine the zoning of your property.

Step 2: Determining required setbacks

  • Once you figure out what your property is zoned, you can check the Zoning By-law to see what the required setbacks are by looking at the “zone provisions” table under each of the zone sections.
  • Sometimes, properties will have a subzone (i.e.: R2E, denoted by a letter after the zone), there will be a table of “subzone provisions” that sets out the required setbacks.
  • Some properties will also have a Special Exception (i.e.: R2-1, denoted by a dash and a number after the zone), there will be a “Special Provisions” section that sets out specific differences to the zone provisions that apply to this property only.

Step 3: Understanding how the required setbacks apply to your property

  • The setbacks in the zoning by-law are the distances that you must keep between your property lines and the structure that you’re building.
  • If you are unsure about where your property lines are located, you may need to consult an Ontario Land Surveyor – only Ontario Land Surveyors can tell you exactly where your property lines are located.
  • If your yard is larger than the required yard, your deck or porch can be bigger; only the required yards matter.

Environmental and Contextual Notes:

  • In some cases, there may be environmental constraints that would prohibit the construction of buildings in certain locations or there may be additional approvals from the Mississippi Valley Conservation Authority that are required.
  • Please note that on some properties, there may be easements, drainage easements, swales or other drainage features that may limit where decks and porches can be located; contact the Municipality if there are features on your property that you are unsure about. 

What if my deck or porch does not meet these zoning requirements?

  • Certain types of structures have different rules for setbacks. These guidelines will provide you with the information needed to meet the zoning requirements for these types of structures:
    • Permitted projections such as decks and porches
    • Accessory buildings such as sheds and garages
    • Pools & hot tubs
    • Fences
  • If you’re unable to meet the Zoning requirements, you may still be able to build your deck if you apply for a Minor Variance application. Contact the Planning Department to learn about the Minor Variance process. 
Permitted Projections - Decks and Porches

Permitted projections are unenclosed structures attached to a building such as porches and decks. Decks and porches are permitted on most buildings provided that they meet the permitted projection requirements of Section 6.19 of the Zoning By-law; there are different rules for where porches and decks can be built depending on the height of the walking surface and whether or not it is covered or uncovered.


Please note that enclosed structures such as sunrooms are considered additions and need to follow the same setbacks as the main house.


Accessory Buildings - Sheds and Garages

Accessory buildings are building such as sheds and detached garages that are located on the same lot as a main building such as a house. Accessory buildings are permitted on most lots provided that they meet the accessory building requirements of Section 6.1 of the Zoning By-law. Detached secondary dwelling units are required to follow the same rules as accessory buildings. Different rules apply depending on the zoning of your lot.