Termination of Land Use Contracts (LUCs)

Land Use Contract Legislation

In 1972, the Province of British Columbia adopted legislation to allow municipalities to enter into agreements with landowners and developers to address the various aspects of land development. These agreements are called Land Use Contracts (LUCs). These LUCs are zoning, development permits, subdivision layouts and servicing agreements all rolled into one document. By the end of the 1970’s, the province revised the legislation to discontinue municipalities from entering into further LUCs with landowners and developers.

LUCs have continued to be in effect as the de facto zoning, unless the LUCs were discharged by Township Council following an owner-initiated discharge application process. A total of 54 LUCs still remain active in the Township. 

Up until recently, only the landowner could initiate an LUC discharge. On May 29, 2014, the province adopted legislation to terminate LUCs by June 30, 2024. 

All LUCs in the Township will be terminated by the province on June 30, 2024.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

All properties located within the Township, regardless of whether subject to a LUC or not, are subject to Zoning Bylaw No. 2500. When LUCs are terminated by the province in 2024, all properties in the Township that are within a LUC area will revert to the property’s underlying zone, which has been established by Zoning Bylaw No. 2500.

The zone assigned to a property that is regulated by a LUC is referred to as an "underlying zone".

If a property lies within the boundaries of a LUC, all land use regulations are prescribed in the LUC. Nevertheless, all properties in the Township are assigned a zone, described in Zoning Bylaw No. 2500, including those properties that are governed by LUCs.

Once a LUC is terminated, the underlying zoning for the property automatically comes into effect.

Find your property’s zone on GeoSource. Enter your address in the search field and your zone will be noted in the pop-up box on the map. The zoning information is linked to the Zoning Bylaw section corresponding to your property’s zone.

No, you will not be required to make any changes or upgrades to bring your property or existing dwelling into compliance with the underlying zone, which will regulate your property once the termination of the LUC on your property comes into effect on June 24, 2024.

When the LUC is terminated and the underlying zone takes effect, uses or buildings that do not conform to the zone may be recognized as legal non-conforming.

There are properties within some LUC areas that do not correspond to the underlying zoning that has been assigned to the property, or that contain uses that are not equivalent to the uses contained within existing zones under Zoning Bylaw No. 2500.

If existing lawfully built structures and active uses do not comply with the underlying zoning, they may have legal non-conforming status which allows them to continue.

If a non-conforming use is, among other things, not active at the termination of the LUC or is discontinued for 6 continuous months, owners may lose the non-conforming use protection.

Also known as a “grandfathered” use, legal non-conforming use means the use of any land, building, or structure that legally existed on a property prior to the passing of a Zoning Bylaw governing the property, and that continues to operate out of conformity with the governing Zoning Bylaw regulations.

Simply put, as long as you don’t make any changes to the land, building, or structure recognized as legal non-conforming, it can legally remain as is.

If a non-conforming use is, among other things, not active at the termination of the LUC or is discontinued for 6 continuous months, owners may lose the non-conforming use protection.

Structures and uses that were not in existence prior to the LUC termination must comply with the underlying zoning regulation. New construction will need to comply with the underlying zoning or owners may apply to the Board of Variance.

The Board of Variance provides an opportunity for property owners to make an application to be considered for a minor relaxation of the Zoning Bylaw based on undue hardship. The most common appeals are the relaxation of the setback requirements for buildings, height and lot coverage.

The Board of Variance is not intended to be an appeal mechanism for Council’s land use decisions such as density or use as prescribed in the Zoning Bylaw, nor can the Board’s decisions replace that of Council.

Information on applying for a variance can be found here: Board of Variance (tol.ca)

The permitted use of a property can only be amended by Township Council, through a Rezoning process.

To determine your property’s rezoning potential, please follow these steps:

  1. Determine the property’s current zoning and land use designation, by using our online mapping system GeoSource:
    1. Search your property using the search function at the top of the page
    2. An information box will pop up with basic property information including “Stat Area Description” which identifies the Community or Neighbourhood Plan area.
  2. Determine the land use designation of the property:
    1. Click the first icon at the bottom of the GeoSource page to open the Layer List box.
    2. Tick and expand “Planning” in the Layer List. Further select the “CP Designation” and “NP Designation” functions. This will bring up the land use designation of your property on the map.
  3. Using the land use designation as a starting point, refer to the Community and Neighbourhood Plan applicable to your property. These plans provide specific details about land use designations and other important information such as maximum density, servicing, and development prerequisites.

Rezoning requires Council approval, and any proposals will be reviewed for adherence to relevant plans and policies.

For further information, please refer to tol.ca/development.

To determine LUC areas in the Township, click this link: Geosource – Land Use Contracts. LUC areas are depicted on the map.

For individual properties, select the property and click the Generate Report link in the pop-up box. If a Land Use Contact applies, the information is contained on the parcel report.

Land Use Contacts are registered on property title and are administered by the BC Land Titles Office (LTO).

Copies of current Land Use Contacts should be obtained through LTO.

Yes, you can apply for a Land Use Contract Discharge through the Development Services Department, in advance of the provincial termination.

You would be required to submit an application and pay the associated fees applicable to a Land Use Contract Discharge. This application process is the same as a Rezoning process and will go to Council for approval.

If you choose to wait until the provincial termination date of June 30, 2024, there is no cost or application process associated.

No, land development may only occur if a property owner makes a development application to the Township.

Applications must have owner authorization and are reviewed by Township staff for adherence to relevant plans and policies, prior to acceptance.

No. All development applications must go through the regular land development process and are reviewed by staff for adherence to relevant plans and policies.
If you require further information, please contact the Development Services Department at cdinfo@tol.ca or 604-533-6034.