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Land Use Planning

The Planning team works with Municipalities to be “development ready.” If you can’t find a spot that’s ready for your development, we can help guide you to the best place for your development, and through the planning approval process if changes are needed to accommodate your proposal. Don’t feel you have to navigate the process on your own. We know how it works and we are here to navigate it with you.

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Bruce County Official Plan

The purpose of the Bruce County Official Plan is to establish a policy framework to guide the physical, social and economic development of the County and to protect the natural environment within the County to the year 2021.  For more information on any current County-wide amendments to the County's Official Plan, or to download a PDF version, please visit the Bruce County Official Plan service page.  

Municipal Planning Documents and Active Planning Applications

Each of the 8 municipalities within Bruce County have their own Comprehensive Zoning By-law and may have a Secondary Official Plan.  To view these documents, please visit the municipal web page within the County website by selecting the municipality of interest from the listing above.  Active planning applications and associated documents for each file are also available for viewing on each of the municipal pages.

The Application Process


Pre-consultation is required with the appropriate planning hub (listed below) prior to submission, providing an opportunity early in the planning process to identify all submission requirements for a complete application.  Application processing takes 3 to 4 months.  If you are interested in filing an application, please first complete a Property Inquiry Form (PDF available below under Planning Forms) and provide a site sketch of your proposal, and submit to the appropriate planning hub (listed below).

Submitting an Application

On-line submissions of applications are not accepted as original applicant and Commissioner of Oaths signatures are required. Applications may be printed from the PDF's on this page, or paper applications are available from municipal and county offices.

Clear, legible site plans detailing all existing and proposed buildings, structures and uses (including septic beds and wells), their dimensions and distance to lot lines are required for all application types.   Please refer to the information sheets provided below, for further information. Pre-consultation is required with the appropriate planning hub prior to submission.

Application 'Form One' (available below) is a multi-purpose application form used for:

  • Official Plan/Secondary Plan Amendment
  • Zoning By-Law Amendment
  • Consent/Severance
  • Minor Variance


As per the Fees and Charges By-Law, the Bruce County Planning department charges fees for each planning application.  

In many municipal and land use planning contexts, there is a general principle that: “Development should pay for development.”  Under this principle, applicants are required to cover the costs for providing the service of processing applications. 

Application fees are intended to charge costs directly to the benefiting party (i.e., applicant), while eliminating or minimizing the burden on the property tax base for the parties that do not benefit directly from the service.  

Planning fees are paid at the time an application is filed. For applications for Consents, Subdivisions and Condominiums, another fee is paid at the time of final approval.  

NOTE: Bruce County is updating its land use planning application fees. Updated fees are needed to recover the full cost for planning applications and service delivery. The new fees are effective starting May 10, 2021. See the complete list of up-to-date planning application fees under Planning Forms.

How to Appeal a Decision

Each completed planning application will have a 'Decision' issued, containing an 'Appeal By' date.  The hearing of appeals is undertaken by the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal (LPAT); To access the required LPAT forms and further details on LPAT Appeal procedures, please visit the LPAT Website.

Alternative Format Available

Bruce County is committed to providing accessible and inclusive services to people of all abilities in a timely manner. The information on this site is intended to provide the public with as much access as possible to information regarding planning applications. Documentation may be made available in an alternative format upon request. To request this information in an alternative format please contact us.


Land Use

Neighbourhoods work better for all when simple rules and guidelines are followed. Land use and bylaw information is easy to find here.

Attachment Size
File Icon Application (Form One) 2022 1 MB
File Icon Site Plan (Sketch) Requirements 2022 38.58 KB
File Icon Surplus Farm Dwelling Severance Information Sheet.pdf 92.54 KB
File Icon 2023 application information package.pdf 151.86 KB
File Icon 2023 fee schedule.pdf 121.2 KB
File Icon property inquiry form.pdf 397.95 KB


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