How to Submit a Planning Application

Step 1: Pre-Application Consultation

Prior to submitting an application, some property owners may be required to attend a meeting with Planning Services. This meeting is required for the following planning applications:

  • Rezoning Applications
  • Rural Comox Valley Official Community Plan Amendments
  • Commercial and Industrial Development Permits
  • Temporary Use Permits

To set up a meeting, complete the Pre-Application Consultation Request Form and submit via email or in person to the CVRD office at 770 Harmston Avenue in Courtenay.

An applicant will be contacted within five business days to schedule a meeting after the submission of a pre-application consultation meeting request form.

Step 2: Gather Required Documents

All planning applications require submission of:

  • Completed application form: download form here
  • Applicable fees: see table below
  • Land title: CVRD staff will pull the land title
  • Site plan: an applicant can either create a site plan themselves or hire a surveyor or other professional to create one. While the CVRD does not refer applicants to specific consultancies or firms, there are many throughout the Comox Valley that can assist with this type of work.

Some applications require additional reports/studies/information to help Planning Services evaluate the impact of a proposal. Specifically, Zoning Bylaw Amendments, Development Permits and Temporary Use Permits  may require development approval information (i.e. additional studies/information). The Development Approval Information Bylaw No. 369 outlines descriptions of these studies and the information required by the CVRD.

To find out more about each type of application, visit Types of Planning Applications

Step 3: Submit Application & Fee

There are two options to submit a planning application:

  • Online: Submit all documents and reports to planning@comoxvalleyrd.ca and a planner will contact the applicant for credit card payment over the phone, or to request further information.
  • In person: Submit all documents and reports to the CVRD office at 770 Harmston Avenue in Courtenay. Payment can be made via cash, cheque, debit, or credit card.

Required Forms

Planning Application Fees
Type of ApplicationFees
Bylaw Amendment: Rezoning $2,000 - $3,000
Development Permit: Aquatic & Riparian Habitat$300
Development Permit: Eagle Nest$300
Development Permit: Heron Nest$300
Development Permit: Shoreline Protection Device$400
Development Permit: Steep Slopes$400
Development Permit: Commercial & Industrial Uses$1,000 + variable fees
Development Permit: Farmland Protection$400
Development Permit: Union Bay Tourism Highway Commercial$400 - $1,000 + variable fees
Development Permit: Kensington Comprehensive Development$400 - $1,000 + variable fees
Development Variance Permit$500
Board of Variance$500
Temporary Use Permit$750 - $1,500
Home Occupation$150
Amendment to the Floodplain$600

Learn more about planning application fees in Schedule ‘B’ of the Planning Procedures and Fees Bylaw No. 328.

What's Next

Step 1: Planning Application Review

Once the application is received and determined to be complete, it will be processed according to the processes outlined in the Comox Valley Regional District Planning Procedures and Fees Bylaw No. 328.

All planning applications are reviewed by Planning Services staff and approval decisions are made by the CVRD Board of Directors, with the exception of several development permits that the Board delegates to CVRD officers, including:

  • Aquatic and Riparian Habitat
  • Eagle Nest
  • Blue Heron Nest
  • Soft Shoreline Protection Devices
  • Steep Slopes

This process is outlined in the Development Permit Delegation – Bylaw No. 2365.

The following diagram shows the standard process for a development permit application, from submission to final decision. Please note that this is intended as a general guideline and is subject to change. Further, the process is different for each type of application. More information and additional process illustrations can be found in the Planning Procedures and Fees Bylaw No. 328.

 

 

Step 2: Planning Application Decision

Applicants will be notified regarding the final status of their application by phone or email – whichever method is preferred. If the application is approved, the applicant can proceed to the building permit stage. If the application is denied, the applicant may speak to a planner to discuss potential alternatives.

The following are general timelines for processing planning applications. Please note that these timelines begin once an application has been received and determined to be complete (including all professional reports), and that they are subject to change.

  • Rezoning: Up to 12 months
  • Development Permits (General Manager approval): 6-8 weeks
  • Development Permits (CVRD Board approval): 3 months
  • Development Variance Permit: 3 months
  • Exemption from the Floodplain Bylaw: 3-4 months
  • Temporary Use Permit: 5-6 months
  • Home Occupation: 2-4 weeks
FAQs
How long do planning applications take to process?

Planning application timelines vary, depending on the type of application. See general timelines above or get in touch with a member of the Planning & Development Services department by phone at 250-334-6006 or online to find out more.

How much do planning applications cost?

Planning applications costs vary, depending on the type of application. See the fee table above for general costs or review Schedule ‘B’ of the Planning Procedures and Fees Bylaw No. 328.

How do I assign a person as my agent to act on my behalf for planning applications?

To give another person the authorization to act on your behalf for planning procedures and applications, fill out the “Agent authorization” section of the planning application.

All application forms say that I need a copy of my property title. Can the Comox Valley Regional District (CVRD) get this for me with my application? What about other covenants or rights-of-ways?

When an application is made, a title search of the property is required to determine if there are any covenants, restrictive covenants, easements, rights-of-ways or other documents registered against the title, which may prohibit construction on the property or on certain areas of the property. All application fees include a title search; however, obtaining any additional documents, such as the ones listed above, are on an “at-cost” basis. We are only able to perform title searches or document retrieval requests for Comox Valley Regional District applications.