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Site Plan Control

The Planning Act of Ontario (Section 41) grants municipalities the authority to review and approve site plans for certain types of development in accordance with established municipal requirements. Site Plan Control Review, an integral component of the municipal planning and development review process, focuses on the technical issues of site design rather than land use.

All of the land within the City of Kenora has been designated as a Site Plan Control Area. This designation allows Council to undertake detailed review of proposals for construction in accordance with Section 41 of the Planning Act. The City of Kenora adopted Site Plan Control By-law No. 189-2010 in 2010.

The City utilizes Site Plan Control to ensure that development in the City is attractive and compatible with adjacent uses.

Site Plan Control is applicable to all commercial, industrial, institutional and multi-residential development and to the design of facilities to have regard for accessibility in the City. The entire City is designated as a Site Plan Control Area except for lands zoned R1, R2 and for day care uses on land zoned RU or where there are three (3) or more units. The City may also require Site Plan Control in order to protect natural features, and environmental elements as designated in this Official Plan as a Special Policy Overlay.

Site Plan Control may be used for any development on Black Sturgeon Lake, or any navigable waterway in the City, in order to protect natural resource values.

City Council has delegated Planning and Building staff to administer the site plan control by-law in order to ensure that the process does not create undue delay or additional costs in the development process. In all cases, Site Plan Agreements shall be executed by the City before development can occur. The staff are available for pre-consultation with applicants. Applications for site plan approval should be submitted to either the Chief Building Official or Planning Administrator.

The Site Plan Control Application can be found in Planning & Property Forms.

What type of standards or requirements may be requested through this process?

Pursuant to Section 41 of The Planning Act

  • Easements
  • Road Widenings
  • Entrances
  • Road Improvements
  • Other Requirements
  • Test Manholes
  • Fire Flows
  • Downstream Drainage Improvements
  • Contributions Towards Sidewalks
  • Storm Water Management Studies
  • Traffic Impact Studies
  • Updating of Street As-Builts

Do I have the right to appeal a condition?

Under Section 41 (12) of the Planning Act If the municipality fails to approve the plans or drawings referred to in subsection (4) within 30 days after they are submitted to the municipality or if the owner of the land is not satisfied with any requirement made by the municipality under subsection (7) or by the upper-tier municipality under subsection (8) or with any part thereof, including the terms of any agreement required, the owner may require the plans or drawings or the unsatisfactory requirements, or parts thereof, including the terms of any agreement required, to be referred to the Municipal Board by written notice to the secretary of the Board and to the clerk of the municipality or upper-tier municipality, as appropriate. 2002, c. 17, Sched. B, s. 14 (5).


(12.1) The Municipal Board shall hear and determine the matter in issue and determine the details of the plans or drawings and determine the requirements, including the provisions of any agreement required, and the decision of the Board is final. 2002, c. 17, Sched. B, s. 14 (5).

Final determination

(4.3) The Municipal Board’s determination under subsection (4.2) is not subject to appeal or review. 2006, c. 23,

How long do I have to complete all the site work that is outlined in the registered Site Plan Control Agreement?

In every agreement there is a clause noting the time frame allotted to complete all the site work. Depending on the individual circumstances, the site work may be requested to be completed either ‘within two years of the issuance of any building permit” or ‘two years of the execution of the agreement”.

What happens once all the site work has been completed?

Upon acknowledgement from the owner or his agent that all the conditions outlined in the registered Site Plan Control Agreement have been completed, the agencies that were originally requested to provide comments are at this time, asked to conduct inspections. When all the agencies are satisfied that the site has been developed to their satisfaction, the City’s Finance Department is then directed to release the deposits (with the exception of money that was collected for road improvements, etc.).

Even though the site work has been completed and deposits returned, the agreement will remain on title at the registry office in perpetuity. The owner of the property is responsible for maintaining the site in accordance with the registered agreement.

At what stage will a building permit be issued?

Once the Site Plan Control Agreement has been registered, deposits collected and any condition within your Site Plan Control Agreement that is noted to be fulfilled ‘prior to the issuance of a building permit” has been complied with, a letter of clearance will be given to Building Services. At that time, providing all other approvals for the building permit have been obtained, a building permit may then be issued. The development of the property must proceed in compliance with the registered Site Plan Control Agreements.

In order to avoid concurrent delays in the process of the issuance of a building permit, it is possible to submit applications for both the building permit and site plan control agreement at the same time. If time is not of an essence and you want to know what is going to be asked of you in the Site Plan Control Agreement, it may be to your benefit to have the agreement in place prior to applying for a building permit.

If you are anxious to commence construction and the Site Plan Control Agreement has not been registered, the Ontario Building Code Act, Section 8.(3) does allow for commencing construction prior to completing your Site Plan Control Agreement. The “Conditional Building Permit” which allows for this is typically issued provided:

I) at least one circulation of your site plan proposal has been undertaken, with associated comments received, and

II) you enter into a legal agreement with the City which formalizes your undertaking to complete the Site Plan Control Agreement within a reasonably prescribed time frame.

Contact Information
Please contact either or Kevin Robertson, Chief Building Official at 807-467-2022 ( ) or Devon McCloskey, Planner, at 807-467-2059 ( for further information or to make an appointment.