Planning Services FAQ

Forest understory
Thurne Parks Conservation Area

Answers to common questions

Ganaraska Conservation comments on applications circulated under the Planning Act with regard to natural hazards such as flooding and erosion.

GRCA has commenting responsibility for natural hazards by the Province of Ontario. GRCA also provides comments to our Municipal partners on matters including natural heritage, stormwater management and hydrogeology.

Planning Act Applications

Please contact your local municipality to apply for any of the following planning activities:

  • Minor Variance
  • Zoning By-law Amendment
  • Consent/Severance
  • Site Plan Approval
  • Official Plan Amendment
  • Plan of Subdivision or Condominium

Your municipality will circulate your application to GRCA planning staff for comments as required.

Fees for Plan Review

There is a fee for all Planning Act reviews. This fee is separate from any subsequent required permit fee.

Our review fees are based on the type of application circulated. The Municipality or GRCA may contact you for the appropriate fee.

GRCA fee can be paid by credit card over the phone or cheque.

Additional Information

If you would like to know more about the Regulated Area and our role in protecting people and the environment visit the Apply For A Permit page.

You can learn more about our plan review Process and Policies.

If you would like to speak directly to staff please visit the Contact Us page.

Natural Heritage Features Considered Include:

  • Wetlands
  • Watercourses
  • Shorelines
  • Fish habitat
  • Significant woodlands
  • Species at risk habitat
  • Areas of natural and scientific interest (ANSI's)

If a Subject Property contains a Natural heritage feature, it may be subject to an Environmental Impact Study. Under the Planning Act, R.S.O. 1990 and in accordance with the Provincial Policy Statement (PPS) (2020) municipalities can request an Environmental Impact Study (EIS) to help guide recommendations for applications for development within or adjacent to natural heritage features. In addition, under the Conservation Authorities Act Ontario Regulation 168/06, Development, Interference with Wetlands and Alterations to Shorelines and Watercourses, GRCA can request an EIS to aid informed decision-making as it applies to permit applications within or adjacent to a wetland or watercourse.

An EIS is a study that is to be completed by a qualified biologist to assess the existing conditions and how they may be impacted by the proposed development. In most cases, an EIS will consist of detailed literature review, field investigations, such as breeding bird surveys, amphibian surveys, vegetation surveys, etc., as well as modelling. All of the collected information will help to determine the impacts the development will have on the natural heritage features and mitigations that will protect and enhance the ecological function of the feature during and post-development.

Contact GRCA Staff

Please contact GRCA staff by phone or e-mail with questions you may have, from Monday to Friday 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.