If you are starting a business in Port Coquitlam, visit the Starting a Business page for more information.
Information on this page:
- Get started
- Application process
- Approval and inspections
- Maintaining compliance (changing your business)
- Contact information
Important Zoning Information
Prior to opening a business or leasing space, you need to determine if the zoning of the proposed location is suitable for your business.
To verify the zoning for your property, use the PoCoMAP interactive map and check the Zoning Bylaw for permitted uses in the zone.
You can also contact the Planning Division at 604.927.5442 or firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance.
What type of licence do you need?
The three types of licences are:
- Intermunicipal Business licences are for mobile businesses that operate in Port Moody, Coquitlam or Port Coquitlam from a location in Port Coquitlam.
- Resident businesses have a permanent location in Port Coquitlam and operate from offices, retail locations, warehouses, manufacturing facilities and homes.
- Non-Resident Businesses operate in Port Coquitlam on a temporary basis and include building trades contractors and mobile businesses that have no fixed address in the City Port Coquitlam.
Certain types of businesses may operate from home, with some restrictions.
The Accessory Home Businesses regulations in Section 3 of the Zoning Bylaw restricts the type of business activities that are allowed to operate in a residential neighbourhood (in order to minimize disturbances to surrounding properties), limits the size of the area used for business purposes, and regulates parking and storage impacts.
For more information, download the Home-Based Business Information Package or contact the Bylaw Services staff.
Business Bylaw and Penalties
Review the Business Bylaw for information about business licensing and regulation in the City of Port Coquitlam.
Business licences are issued for one calendar year, January 1 to December 31. Staff will review your application to make sure it is complete and will forward the application to the appropriate City staff for approval.
To apply for a licence, complete an application form and bring it to the Bylaw Services Division at City Hall with the required information and fee (see below).
Applications are available:
- from the Business licence Division at City Hall
In PDF format:
Information required to obtain a licence:
- Business name, address, phone number and fax number
- Owner's name, address, and phone number
- Two emergency contact names and their phone and fax numbers
- Address and total square footage of the business premise
- Number of parking stalls allocated to your business (if applicable)
- If different than the business owner, name and phone number of the property owner/property management company (if the premise is leased)
The time required to process a licence application depends on the approvals that are needed (see below). Typically, a licence is issued within four weeks. Bylaw Services staff can update you on the status of your application.
Business licence fees vary depending on the type of business and are listed in Schedule A of the City’s Business Bylaw. Staff can also advise you on the fee.
Fees are charged on an annual basis, and are non-refundable once a licence has been approved and issued. The licence fee is pro-rated on August 1 for new businesses.
The approvals required will depend on the type of business activity, and may include inspections by City staff or approval from Fraser Health. Once all approvals are received, the Business Licence will be mailed to you.
Before your licence is issued, a Building Inspector and Fire Protective Services Inspector will conduct a site inspection. The date and time of this inspection is arranged by the Business licensing staff at the time of your application submission and fee payment.
Building Division Inspection
It is important to note that you may be required to apply for, and receive, a building permit for any modifications required to accommodate your business. A building permit is required when you:
- construct a new building
- add to and/or alter an existing building
- change the occupancy of an existing building or make interior renovations
- make changes to the exit from an existing building
- make additions or changes to the plumbing, fire alarm or fire sprinkler system
Visit the Building Permits page for information about various types of permits.
If applicable to your project, visit the Build a Structure page for information about permits and other requirements.
You may also contact the Building Division at 604.927.5444 or email@example.com for information on the specific requirements of your business plans.
Fire Department Inspection
This inspection ensures that your business premises comply with the City’s Fire & Emergency Services Bylaw. Compliance helps to protective lives, property and equipment investments.
For details, review the Fire & Emergency Services inspection webpage or call 604.927.5466.
Fraser Health Authority Approval
Establishments selling food, alcohol and/or cigarettes, beer and wine stores, daycares and beauty services require approval from the Fraser Health Authority. Click for information:
- Operating a food business
- Personal Service Establishments (including hair and tanning salons, laser hair removal, tattoos or piercing)
- Tobacco retailers
- Child care facilities (view the City webpage on this topic)
Once you have a business licence, you will automatically receive a renewal notice in the mail in late November of each year. Licence renewals are due by January 1 and can be paid in the following ways:
- In person at City Hall, located at 2580 Shaughnessy Street, from 8:30 am to 4:30 pm, Monday to Friday
- By mail (see address below)
- Drop box (located outside to the right of the main entrance at City Hall) or
- By telephone to 604.927.5238 (Visa or Mastercard only)
If you stop operating your business, you must contact the Bylaw Services Division in writing or by phone to 604.927.5238. Otherwise, you may continue to receive renewal notices, and may be liable for fees.
If you make certain changes to your business, you may no longer be in compliance with City bylaws or the terms of your business licence.
Contact the Bylaw Services Division at 604.927.5238 or firstname.lastname@example.org before you:
- Make any physical changes to the premises (e.g. create a new room).
- Change the property use or add another use.
- Sublease part of your space.
- Open an additional location in Port Coquitlam.
- Cease operating your business in Port Coquitlam.
Contact:Bylaw Services Division
Location and Mailing AddressMain Floor, City Hall, 2580 Shaughnessy Street
Port Coquitlam BC V3C 2A8
Business Hours8:30 am to 4:30 pm, Monday to Friday (excluding statutory holidays)
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