Town of Canmore

Land Use Bylaw Updates

What’s Happening

This Bylaw updates the Town of Canmore’s Land Use Bylaw (LUB) 22-2010 to generally make it easier to understand, clarify interpretation practices, introduce improvements that mitigate wildfire and overland flooding risks, and re-align the Green Building Regulations with new federal and provincial program updates. This bylaw amendment is limited to administrative revisions and topics that did not receive opposition during public consultation.


The changes to the LUB reflect the feedback received through multiple stakeholder engagement events that included the design and development industry, as well as comments received at public open houses and the Public Hearing for the unsuccessfully proposed LUB amendment in October 2017.

This bylaw amendment is limited to administrative revisions and topics that did not receive opposition during the stakeholder engagement process. 


There are three general changes proposed: 

Schedule A: LUB Formatting – The proposed re-ordering and re-numbering of the Land Use Bylaw is to make it easier to navigate, simpler to amend in the future, and to have sections logically follow the order by which development typically occurs. This proposed amendment will not change any of the Bylaw’s districts or regulations. To date, Administration has received no feedback related to the formatting of the LUB. 

Schedule A is presented in a blackline versions as it is completely replacing the existing ordering system and is not subject to comparison. 


Schedule B: LUB Omnibus Amendments - The proposed LUB Omnibus changes are intended to clarify sections that have proven ambiguous when interpreting past applications, and to reflect updates to the Municipal Development Plan (MDP). The focus is to make the bylaw simple to understand by having our current interpretation practices explicit in the clauses. 

In addition, the following are some proposed changes that received the majority of stakeholder feedback, and Administration’s effort to address any perceived shortcomings. 

1) FireSmart – Administration recommends adopting strict FireSmart considerations around landscaping and building materials to better protect Canmore from future wildfire risks. 

2) Overland Flood Districts – Formalizing Canmore’s high groundwater districts and embedding related design requirements to mitigate against 1:100 flood events. 

3) Numerous minor amendments – including ability to consider a B&B in an existing single family dwelling in areas zoned R2 or R2A. 

Schedule B is presented in blue-line version as it updates numerous sections and is best viewed in comparison to existing regulations. 


Schedule C: Green Building Regulations – The Town of Canmore's green building requirements have been in place since 2007. These are above the requirements of the Alberta Building Code, and may be difficult to defend if legally challenged. However, it is important to address one of the three largest sources of greenhouse gases and continue to advance Canmore’s objective of being a green building leader. Administration has worked closely with the development industry to ensure that our initiatives have been reasonable in moving the industry towards more sustainable development. 

The amendments address changes to Natural Resource Canada’s (NRCan) EnerGuide program for measuring energy efficiency in housing as well as the inclusions of a new Energy Code as part of the Alberta Building Code. There are updated energy efficiency targets for larger residential, commercial, and industrial buildings, including new incentives and penalties. These recommendations provide a balance between continuing to provide incentives for leading sustainable building practices in Canmore as directed by the Municipal Development Plan (MDP), while providing certainty to the development industry that the requirements won’t hold up completion of new projects, and won’t result in any undue risk for the industry. 

Schedule C is presented in blackline version as it completely replaces the existing regulations. 


How to Get Involved

1. Bylaw 2017-362017 Land Use Bylaw Update passed first reading on Nov. 21, 2017. 

2. A public hearing was held on Tuesday, Dec. 12, 2017 at 5 p.m. at the Canmore Civic Centre. Of the comments noted into the official record, two were in favour and five were neutral or unstated.

3. The bylaw may receive second and third reading on March 6, 2018 (date to be confirmed).

You can view a copy of the proposed bylaw below:

   pdf Bylaw 2017 36 - 2017 Land Use Bylaw Update (3.20 MB)                                                       

Contact the Town of Canmore’s Planning Department for more information at:
Phone: 403.678.1543
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Hours: 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Monday – Friday



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