A Development Permit is a written approval issued by the County under the Land Use Bylaw authorizing development, including excavation, stockpiling, building, additions, and a change in use or intensity of the use of the land or building, to proceed. Development Permit Applications can be made online using our Gateway portal.

The County processes a variety of applications that impact land use in the county throughout the year, some of which require public notification and/or public input before final approval is granted.

Development Permit Approvals for discretionary uses are posted on the Approved Development Permits page during the 21-day appeal period. These decisions may be appealed to the relevant appeal board during this time. The Development Approval is not final until the appeal period has expired.

When are Development Permits required?

Development Permits are required for any development (excavation, stockpiling, new buildings, additions to existing buildings, and a change in use or intensification of the use of the land or building) except those listed under Section 2(6) of the Land Use Bylaw. Some exceptions include:

  • Maintenance or repair of structures that do not include structural alterations, or change the use or intensity of the use of the structure
  • Construction of farm buildings, in the AG District, provided that a building permit is not required under the Alberta Building Code
  • Up to two (2) buildings or structures less than 10m2 (108 ft2) in area and not permanently attached to the ground, within a Residential District or an Urban Reserve District provided that no portion of the building is located within the required yard setbacks
  • Construction of decks that are less than 0.61m (2 feet) from the finished grade to the underside of the supporting structure.

It is always a good idea to check with the Planning Department about Development Permit requirements prior to starting any work.

Is a Development Permit required for temporary structures?

Yes, regardless of whether structures are permanent or temporary they require a Development Permit. This includes buildings larger than 10m2 on skids, fabric/poly covered buildings, towers, Sea Cans, and other storage.

What is the difference between Permitted and Discretionary Development Permits?

Permitted uses are allowed in a land use district and must be granted approval. A development Permit is required, and conditions may be attached to the approval. If a variance is required from any part of the land use bylaw, the development authority may refuse the permit.

Discretionary uses may be allowed in the district and therefore can either be approved or refused by the County, at the discretion of the development authority. Conditions may also be attached to an approval of a discretionary use.

How long is my Development Permit valid?

A Development Permit becomes void 12 months from the issue date if the development has not commenced. Those portions of the development that are incomplete 24 months from the issue date are no longer approved for development. An extension to the permit may be requested at either stage for no longer than six months and may be approved at the discretion of the development officer, as long as the permit has not expired.

Can a copy of my Development Permit or a list of issued Development Permits be given to the public?

If the permit has been issued to an individual, the County may release the name of the permit holder and the "nature of the permit."

This would likely include all the information related to what the permit allows the permit holder to do (e.g., location of work site, the kind of use, value of the project, etc.). It may not include other personal information such as the permit holder's home phone number or home address if different from the location of the work site.