Official Community Plan Amendment
An Official Community Plan (OCP) is a broad strategy to direct our growth and development, providing guidance on issues such as land use, economy, environment, transportation, community facilities and services.
An Official Community Plan amendment is required for a proposed development that does not comply with OCP designations or policies.
Other application processes
Other application processes – such as rezoning, subdivision, Development Variance Permit or Development Permit (form and character) applications – may run concurrently, but separate applications are required for each process.
A Development Permit cannot be approved or issued until any rezoning and/or OCP amendment associated with the project are given final approval.
- Review the City’s Licensed Establishment Policy for guidelines on location and hours of operation.
- Access the Official Community Plan (OCP) for policies, land use designation and development permit areas. Visit PoCoMAP to view the current OCP designation of a property.
- Find out the property’s zoning using PoCoMAP or the Zoning Maps in the Planning Division, and check the Zoning Bylaw for zoning requirements and regulations that apply to your property, including such supplemental regulations as recycling facilities and specifications and bicycle facilities. Certain regulations in the zoning bylaws may be varied or supplemented through the Development Permit or Development Variance Permit process. Land use and density cannot be varied and a rezoning application will be required.
- If applicable to your project, consult the City’s information on Development Variance Permits and small lot development.
- If your development is within 50 meters of a watercourse, consult the Watercourse Development Permits page.
- Review the Parking and Development Management Bylaw to determine parking and loading requirements.
- Please consult other documents including the Community Charter; Local Government Act; Land Title Act; Strata Property Act; City bylaws (such as the Subdivision Servicing Bylaw, Tree Bylaw, and Soil Removal and Deposit Bylaw) and other municipal legislation and policies as may be applicable for specific requirements.
- If you are building a new structure or making significant upgrades, consult the Build or Renovate a Structure page.
- Review the Heritage Resource Inventory (2013) to see if the subject property has been identified as having potential heritage significance. Consult the Heritage page to learn more about the City’s heritage policies and programs.
- Consider employing professionals familiar with development to assist in the application process.
Before submitting your application, take steps to speak to the property owners adjacent to the proposed development. This is an opportunity to introduce the proposal, seek input and address neighbour concerns early in the process.
Planning staff are available to discuss the proposal and how it addresses community goals and objectives. Staff will also provide advice to ensure a comprehensive application, including public consultation requirements and appropriate terms of reference for required consultant studies.
Bring information such as a site plan, development concept and photos of the site and surrounding areas to the meeting.
Submit a complete OCP Amendment application including fees (see below), and appoint a primary contact for all communication regarding the application (usually the architect or project manager, unless the owner is familiar with development application processes).
Please consult the application checklist attached to the application form for a detailed list of requirements. Staff are only able to accept complete applications.
A development sign must be posted on the property within 30 days of application. The sign must be four feet by eight feet and placed in a highly visible area facing the street (two signs for large corner or through properties).
Applicants must submit a photograph of the sign(s) to the File Manager when the sign is posted and again when the date for the public hearing has been added. The sign(s) must be removed following a decision on the application.
Please refer to the Development Sign Specifications for detailed requirements.
There is no defined timeframe to obtain a decision in an OCP amendment process. The time depends on the complexity of the policy issues, comprehensiveness of the application, time to respond to identified issues, public consultation process and timing of Committee and Council meetings.
Fees, Charges, and Security/Deposit
All application fees are outlined in Schedule D of the Fees and Charges Bylaw.
There may be legal costs associated with your application. Restrictive covenants, statutory right-of-ways or other legal agreements and documents may be required.
Development Cost Charges are applicable at the time of Building Permit.
The appointed Planning File Manager will circulate the application to staff in other departments and any applicable outside agencies. The primary contact will be notified about any requests for information or revisions. Enquiries about the status of the application should be directed to the Planning File Manager.
If an OCP Amendment application does not comply with submission requirements or if additional information is required for its assessment, a written response from the Planning File Manager will be provided listing resubmission requirements.
Resubmissions which fully address all identified issues and information requirements will proceed in a timely manner through the application review process. All materials responding to resubmission requirements must be provided by the applicant in one comprehensive resubmission to the File Manager unless otherwise stipulated by the File Manager.
Consultation with neighbours, local residents and any other who may be affected by the proposal is strongly encouraged prior to and throughout the application process. This enables the applicant to convey their development vision to the surrounding neighbours, receive input and adjust the proposal to meet community objectives. Holding a neighbourhood information meeting should be raised with staff early in the application review process.
If an OCP amendment involves significant variance to Zoning Bylaw regulations and, in the opinion of the Smart Growth Committee (SGC), would benefit from a formal opportunity for public input, then a Public Meeting may be required prior to a decision on an application. An additional fee would be required to cover the advertising costs involved in such consideration.
Please see the Public Information Meeting Checklist for further information.
Committee of Council
Once submission requirements are addressed, a staff report will be forwarded to the Committee of Council for consideration of the proposal. Committee of Council normally meets twice a month and applicants are encouraged to attend the meeting relevant to their application.
- The Committee of Council may support proceeding with the public consultation process pursuant to s.879 of the Local Government Act. The applicant may be asked to advertise and host a public information meeting (consult the guide for details).
- The Committee of Council may request additional information if it feels larger community issues need to be addressed by the applicant prior to making a decision or initiating the public consultation.
- The Committee of Council may determine it does not support the application and forward to Council with a recommendation for rejection.
If public consultation takes place, a second staff report to the Committee of Council will outline the outcome, provide additional information on the application and address associated applications. Unless the consultation process identifies issues to be resolved, the recommended next step is usually Council consideration.
Council will receive a SGC report and recommendation(s) and discuss the application. If it wishes to further consider the amendment, staff will be authorized to bring forward an amending bylaw. This bylaw is typically brought forward for 1st and 2nd reading at the next Council meeting. A public hearing will be scheduled if Council grants 1st and 2nd reading.
The Corporate Officer will set the date and ensure formal notification is provided to property owners and residents. The public hearing date must be posted on the development sign. If the application is for a text amendment only, notification will consist of advertisements in the local newspaper. Council will hear from any person who wishes to provide comments at the hearing.
After Council closes the public hearing, it will make one of the following decisions:
- Proceed with the application by giving the bylaw amendment third reading. Council may also establish conditions to be met by the applicant prior to consideration of adoption;
- Reject the application if it believes the application is not in the public interest; or
- Direct the applicant to bring forward additional information. Normally this action will result in the requirement to hold an additional public hearing.
Following completion of all conditions, the applicant will request their application be placed on a Council agenda to be considered for fourth (final) reading to adopt the bylaw amendment.
Location and Mailing Address
City Hall Annex (Above the Bank of Montreal, 200-2564 Shaughnessy St, Port Coquitlam, BC, V3C 3G4
Business Hours: 8:30 am to 4:30 pm, Monday to Friday (excluding statutory holidays)