Planning jargon can be complicated. Here is a helpful guide on terms: 

Zoning By-law: The Zoning By-law monitors the day-to-day operations around a scheduled plan. It outlines the legality surrounding land-use zones.

Site plans under review: Site plans conduct an analysis of the appropriate procedures outlined for the implementation of commercial/industrial development. The Site plan audit, as a rule, centers around stopping, traffic, seepage, roadway development, signage, utilities, screening, lighting, and different parts of the proposition to land at the most ideal plan for the area.

The Ward Councillor can request that any application be “bumped-up” for a report to City Council. Usually, a Ward Councillor will make this request to provide an opportunity to consult with the local community. In this case, the community consultation meeting, also called a Site Plan Working Group, is organized and chaired by the Ward Councillor. Planning staff usually will attend the meeting as a resource.

Site Plan Working Groups provide a process that examines the design and technical aspects of a proposed development to ensure it is attractive and compatible with the surrounding area and contributes to the City's economic, social and environmental vitality. Features such as building designs, site access and servicing, waste storage, parking, loading and landscaping are reviewed.

Section 37 of the Planning Act permits the City to authorize increases in permitted height and/or density through the zoning bylaw in return for community benefits, provided that related Official Plan policies are in place. Community benefits could mean more park spaces, improved community centres and other supports for the growing neighbourhood. As Section 37 is intended to address the needs created by growth, the Planning Act requires benefits to have a reasonable geographic relationship with a proposed development. Learn more about Section 37.

Section 42 of the Planning Act is Toronto’s planning tool for acquiring new parkland is through land dedications or cash-in-lieu of parkland paid as a condition of development or redevelopment. Section 42 sets out a standard rate for parkland dedication of a maximum of 2 percent of the land area for commercial or industrial development and a maximum of 5 percent for residential development.  Section 42 also permits municipalities to set their own Alternative Parkland Dedication Rates (within limits set by the Planning Act) to enable the City to require parkland as a condition of development and redevelopment. Learn more about Section 42.

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