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An Official Community Plan (OCP) Amendment application is required when a proposed development does not conform to the land use designation(s) of the OCP. An amendment is the process of legally changing the land use designation on a property through an amending bylaw. The approval process for an OCP Amendment is similar to a Rezoning Application – a bylaw amendment and a Public Hearing are required before the Board adopts an OCP Amendment. In some instances, an OCP Amendment must be made before a change to zoning can occur, and the amendment applications (OCP and Rezoning) typically occur in tandem.
When the Electoral Areas Services Committee (EASC) and CVRD Board assess new development proposals, they are required to determine whether the project is consistent with the OCP. This is done by considering the proposal based on its designation in the OCP, and through an OCP policy assessment that is done by Planning staff. Amendments to the OCP are carefully assessed, as each new proposal should help contribute to the community achieving its visions and goals.
There are some occasions where a proposal is consistent with the goals and visions of the OCP, but is in conflict with the existing OCP land use designation or specific OCP policies. In this instance, an OCP Amendment may be required.
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Each Electoral Area has a Zoning Bylaw with regulations for each parcel, including; use, density and siting (e.g. setbacks). Permitted uses are identified for each zone, for clarity - each Zoning Bylaw is equipped with a section on definitions and general regulations. The CVRD web map can help you quickly determine what your property is zoned. For more information on how to use the Webmap see "What is the Webmap and how do I use it?"
Zoning bylaws can be complex and because we have so many of them it can be even more challenging. We recommend following these easy steps:
The online Web Map allows anyone to search their property and find important information like zoning, OCP designations, development permit areas, service areas and more. To use the Web Map simply go to the Web Map and click on desktop icon (see image #1). From there a disclaimer statement will appear, click 'accept'. The map will launch and show the entire Regional District. To find your property you can either search by scrolling in and navigating to it, or use the address tool or parcel identifier (PID) for bare land (see image #2). Once you have found the property, use the 'identify tool' (top left - see image #3) by clicking on the tool and then on the property. By doing this, information should populate on the left side. From there you can click on any of the items shown in that list for more information. Links are also provided to pertinent bylaws like the applicable zoning bylaw (see image #4).