Expertise - Planning and Development

Consents (Severances) & Part Lot Control Exemptions

In Ontario, the subdivision of land is governed by the Planning Act (Ont.). Under this legislation, lot creation is permitted through the approval of a plan of subdivision, the granting of a consent (commonly described as a “severance”) or, for lots within a plan of subdivision, through a by-law exemption. These provisions also apply to agreements, such as lease agreements, that have the effect of granting the use of land for a period of 21 years or more where the agreement may have the effect of creating a separate parcel of land. The Planning Act contains some exceptions from the above approval requirements.

Usually it is the number of lots and/or the extent of servicing that is required that determines whether the appropriate approval process is by way of plan of subdivision or consent.

Consents (severances) are usually granted by either land division committees or committees of adjustment, according to the approach adopted by each municipality in the province. Appeals from decisions of these committees can be taken to the the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal (formerly the Ontario Municipal Board), or in the case of Toronto, the Toronto Local Appeal Body (TLAB).

Part lot control exemption by-laws are enacted by the council of the municipality where a landowner wishes to further subdivide a lot that had been previously been created by way of a plan of subdivision. This approach avoids the necessity of obtaining consents (severances) for this lot creation. This approach is particularly appropriate where there will be a large number of small parcels created for such purposes as service easements.

Wood Bull provides guidance to with these approvals processes, from the application stage, to meetings with relevant municipal staff, to representation before committees of adjustment, land division committees and municipal councils up to the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal/TLAB and any related court proceedings.