Frequently Asked Questions regarding Second Suites and Accessory Buildings in Orillia
Q. Can I construct an apartment above my detached garage or boathouse?
A. Garages and boathouses are considered accessory structures. The City's Zoning By-law prohibits use of an accessory structure for human habitation.
Q. I would like to build an apartment in my single family house. What planning considerations should I be aware of?
A. The addition of a second dwelling unit is permitted provided the following conditions are satisfied:
- The two units will be divided horizontally.
- Each unit will have its own independent entrance.
- The property is located in one of the following zone categories: HR, R1, R2, R3, or R4 Zone.
Consult with a Planner to identify the zoning requirements (minimum lot area, lot frontage, yard setbacks, parking requirements). Contact the Planning Division at 705-325-2622 for more information.
Consult with a Building Inspector to ensure the proposed apartment will meet the Building Code requirements. Contact the Building Division at 705-325-2630.
Consult with a Fire Prevention Officer to ensure the proposed apartment will meet the Fire Code requirements. Contact the Fire Department at 705-325-5201.
Q. I purchased a dwelling with an accessory apartment inside. Is this a legal duplex?
A. Submit a written request and payment of $85.00 for a building and zoning compliance review fee to determine whether or not the City recognizes the second dwelling unit as legal. If the City has no evidence of a legal second dwelling unit, then it is the responsibility of the property owner to have the second unit legalized. Consult with a Planner to discuss options for legalizing the second unit. Contact the Planning Division at 705-325-2622.
Q. My new project doesn't seem to fit within the zoning requirements. What can I do?
A. If you feel you cannot modify your project to fully comply with the relevant Zoning By-law provisions, and you feel the contravention is minor thus causing you "undue hardship", an application can be made to the Committee of Adjustment. The Committee of Adjustment has the power to grant a Minor Variance (or permission) for your project. For additional information on the Committee of Adjustment and applicableplanning fees, contact the Planning Division at 705-325-2622.
Q. What are the cost, timing and process for a minor variance, rezoning or Official Plan amendment?
A. The application form lists the fees for various applications. The timing of the process is directly related to the complexity of the application. Minor variances can be dealt with the most quickly, usually two months. Severances have a similar timeframe. A Rezoning or Official Plan Amendment application can usually be completed within a four- to six-month period. Once a decision is final, the timing for completing any agreements or satisfying any conditions of approval is in the hands of the applicant.
Affordable Housing Action Plan
The City of Orillia has an Affordable Housing Action Plan. It was received by City Council in April 2010. The City's Affordable Housing Action Plan was prepared by SHS Consulting in 2010. A Summary Document of the full Affordable Housing Action Plan and aPowerPoint presentation summary have also been prepared.
The Affordable Housing Action Plan contains statistical data about Orillia's population, demographics, household size, range of dwellings, and income.