Draft Plan of Subdivision/Condominium Application
When is a Subdivision Required?
Subdivision and Condominium applications are necessary if you wish to divide a tract of land into building lots or blocks. These lots or blocks can be used for residential, industrial, commercial, institutional (e.g. school) or open space/parks depending on the designation of the land within the Official Plan and Zoning By-law. An approved plan of subdivision is required in order for the lots and blocks to be sold or conveyed separately. A registered plan of subdivision is a legal document which outlines all the details and conditions which are required to develop a parcel of land. A subdivision application is a two-step process. Firstly, a public meeting is held to consider the application at a Council-in-Committee Meeting. Secondly, a recommendation report and draft conditions are forwarded to Council-in-Committee for draft approval. If the application is approved, and the appeal period has passed. The applicants will be required to meet the prescribed conditions prior to registering a subdivision agreement.
Is a Preliminary Submission Required?
The applicant should submit a preliminary concept for review by the Planning Department and other key agencies (Region, NPCA etc.). This preliminary submission will determine and confirm official plan policies, zoning requirements, policy information, required studies, and other additional information requirements before making a formal application to the Town. The preliminary fee of $1,163 paid will be discounted from the full application fees.
How Do I Apply for a Subdivision/Condominium Application?
Application forms are available in the Planning Department at the Town Hall at
Prior to a proposed draft plan of subdivision or condominium being circulated by the Planning & Development Services Department, the owner/developer is required to erect at least one sign on the property to be subdivided. This sign is intended for the information of interested persons.
The sign must have a minimum display area of 50 square feet. Larger signs may be used for large developments or where visibility is a problem.
The sign shall have the following components:
a) Town identification;
b) The words "Public Notice" in bold lettering;
c) The words "Proposed Subdivision" and the name, if any, of the subdivision;
d) A subdivision map, coloured and drawn to show subdivision pattern, proposed land uses, road- ways, pedestrian ways, prominent natural features;
e) A legend and an arrow indicating the north direction;
f) At the bottom of the sign, the following must be included:
"This proposed plan of subdivision has been submitted to the Town of Fort Erie for approval. A public meeting will be held. Persons wishing to comment OR TO MAKE FURTHER INQUIRIES should write or phone the Town of Fort Community and Development Services Department, 1 Municipal Centre Drive, Fort Erie, Ontario, L2A 2S6 or telephone 905-871-1600 or by facsimile at 905-871-6411. Written replies are encouraged.
NOTE: The Planning Act provides for the referral of subdivision plans by individuals to the Ontario Municipal Board only if such comments/concerns are received prior to Council's decision."
The sign must be dated prominently. The date to be used should be on or about the date of posting. Revised signs must include a revision date.
The following colour scheme must be used on all signs:
Are there any other fees? Draft Plan of Subdivision and Condominium Applications must be accompanied by cheques to the Regional Municipality of Niagara and the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority if applicable. For the most current fees please contact them directly.
Once the complete formal application is submitted to the Planning Department and prior to the formal pubic meeting, the applicant will be required to hold one informal public meeting with the area residents. A list of the area residents will be provided to the applicant by planning staff and the venue of the meeting should be held within close proximity to the site or alternatively in the atrium of Town Hall. The applicant will be required to submit a letter in writing to planning staff detailing the concerns raised at the informal public meeting and how the applicant plans to address the concerns.
Formal Notice of Public Meeting:
Once a date has been established to hear the application, a notice of public hearing is created and circulated to the applicant, applicable agencies, and neighbours within a 120 metre radius of the subject property. A notice of public hearing is also advertised in the local newspaper for a minimum of 20 days prior to the Public Meeting.
Town of Fort Erie Council-in-Committee:
Subdivision and Condominium applications are first dealt with by way of “Council-in- Committee”. The function of the Council-in-Committee is to review the application, staff and agency comments on applicable planning policies and regulations, information provided by the applicant, as well as the input of any neighbours. When considering a subdivision, Committee must evaluate the application against criteria such as: conformity with the official plan and zoning by-law, conformity to the Neighbourhood Plan compatibility with adjacent land uses, suitability of the land for the proposed use and adequacy of services (water /sewer/access).
How Long Will I Have To Wait?
Once Council has granted draft plan approval, it is subject to a 20 DAY APPEAL PERIOD, during which time anyone, including yourself, who is not satisfied with the decision may lodge an appeal with THE ONTARIO MUNICIPAL BOARD. If no appeals are received within the 20 day period, draft plan approval is considered final and binding.
What Can I Do If My Subdivision or Condominium Application is Not Approved?
You have the right to appeal the decision of Council to the Ontario Municipal Board. An appeal must be filed with the Board, within 20 days of the date of the notice under Section 51(37) of the Planning Act, with the Clerk of the Municipality who will then forward the appeal to the OMB. An appeal to the Ontario Municipal Board must be accompanied by a fee of $125.00 payable to the Minister of Finance. If an appeal is received, the entire matter is taken out of the Council's jurisdiction, and the Ontario Municipal Board then arranges for a hearing, which currently may take up to six months to schedule. In the majority of cases, the decision of the OMB is considered final.
Ontario Municipal Board Hearings
Applications that receive the approval of Council and are appealed by an outside third party will be subject to an appeal of $2577.00 plus all planning, engineering and legal fees incurred as a result or preparation and attendance at the Hearing. The fee to Subpoena Staff to attend OMB Hearings is $50.00 plus travel costs.
The Various Steps in the Process:
1) The applicant may submit a preliminary plan and the fee of $1,303 to the Planning Department for minor circulation. Planning staff responds in writing to the applicant detailing any issues from key agencies and Town Departments prior to formal submission.
2) Applicant submits application to the Planning Department, including all required sketches, background information, supporting studies and a processing fee of $7,558.00.
3) Planning Department staff processes the application and advises applicant in writing if the application is complete or incomplete within 30 days of the full fees being paid. Planning Department staff will circulate the application to the required agencies within 15 days of deeming the application to be complete.
4) Applicant conducts an informal public meeting with the area residents within 120 metres of the site and applicant is required to inform planning staff in writing of the concerns raised at this meeting.
5) A Public Meeting is scheduled by staff and a notice is circulated to neighbours within 120 metres of the site at least 21 days prior to the Public Meeting and is advertised in the local newspaper for a minimum of 20 days prior to the Public Meeting.
6) Planning Staff prepare an information report for Council to consider at the Public Meeting. After the Public Meeting is held and all comments have been received from the various circulated agencies, planning staff prepares a Recommendation Report to Council, including conditions of draft approval.
7) If approved by Council, the applicant must be fulfill these conditions prior to the approval of the final plan. These conditions must be met within 3 years from the date of approval.
8) Notice of Decision must be provided in accordance with Section 51 (37) of the Planning Act to the applicant and each person or public body that made written request to be notified of the decision.
9) The appeal period is 20 days from the Notice of Decision of the Subdivision.
10) If not appealed, declaration is sent to applicant and agencies indicating that the decision is final.
11) If appealed – sent to Ontario Municipal Board, who will hold a Hearing.