Development Permit Application Guide

This is a public guide for applicants seeking a Development Permit with the Rural Municipality of West River. It will walk you through:

  • Where to find municipal requirements for a Development Permit
  • Development Permit Application Process
  • Other provincial approvals you may need

All questions and clarifications with municipal staff are considered informal until a completed application is submitted.

For Subdivision or Consolidation, see the Subdivision and Consolidation Application Guide.

Development Permits for All Projects

  • Issued by the municipality
  • Evaluated by the Development Officer against the criteria in the:
  • Official Plan
  • describes the priorities and intentions of the municipality
  • Land Use Bylaw (the Bylaw)
  • describes the details of what is allowed in each zone
  • New structure or addition requires a Development Permit, except where excluded in the Bylaw (see section 3.2 for details on exclusions)
  • See Part 3 of the Bylaw for more details

Building Permit

Complete the Application Form for Development Permit

  • Found online or at the municipal office
  • Fill in all applicable fields
  • Submit with a required fee – see Fee Schedule on municipal website or Schedule C in Bylaw

Property information

  • The applicant must have written permission from the property owner when they are not the same (contractor, family, etc.)
  • Owner is responsible for ensuring proper title to the parcel and that the parcel has been approved by the municipality
  • Covenants on the deed are not the responsibility of the municipality
  • Some properties have special restrictions (covenants) attached to the deed – these are a private matter

Each zone in the municipality has different standards

  • The Zoning Map in the Bylaw shows the zones boundaries
  • The Bylaw has the provisions for each zone
  • See the Bylaw for provisions for your zone

General provisions are the standards that apply to all zones

  • See Part 4 of the Bylaw
  • Development must occur on a parcel with road frontage
  • Older parcels may not meet new requirements
  • Each case will be evaluated individually on how the use of such parcels can be accommodated
  • Except where stated, the general provisions apply, even if a permit is not required

The Environmental Risk Zone applies where a hazard or development constraint exists, including watercourses and wetlands and their buffers, flood risk areas, wellfields, and contaminated parcels.

  • See Part 10 of the Bylaw for more detail

    Protected Feature

    Zone Size


    Greater of:

    15m + zone setback for building or

    60 times erosion rate

    Wetland, watercourse or waterbody

    15m + zone setback for building

    Flood Risk Area

    Waterfront areas below 3.13 m in elevation


    Boundaries of wellfield as identified by the Town of Cornwall

All requirements of the Province’s Environmental Protection Act and associated regulations also apply

Before a development permit application can be approved, some provincial approvals or information may be required:

  • Driveway access / Entrance way Permit
    • Call: Transportation, Infrastructure, and Energy: (902) 368-5100
  • Septic/Sewage
    • Requires Site Suitability Assessment & Registration Form (perc test)
    • Usually the responsibility of your contractor to obtain
  • Well
    • Water Act regulations
    • Usually the responsibility of your contractor to obtain
  • Coastal Hazard Assessment
    • Required under Bylaw for all coastal properties with elevations of less than 4.22 m. in elevation
    • Provided by Province’s Climate Change Division

On the permit application, draw a site plan to scale that must include:

  • the shape, area, and dimensions of the lot to be used, including road frontage and shore frontage;
  • the existing and proposed grade elevations relative to the adjoining properties, showing the pattern and allowing for surface water runoff on the lot so as not to cause damage or water runoff onto adjacent lots;
  • the distance from the lot boundaries and public right-of-way, the dimension and height of the building or structure proposed to be erected;
  • the distance from the lot boundaries and size of every structure already erected on the lot and the general location of the buildings on abutting lots;
  • the proposed location and dimension of any well, sewerage systems, parking space, loading space, driveway, and landscaped area on the subject lot as well as within a minimum of 15.2 m on abutting lots;
  • the proposed use of the lot and any building or structure

See part 3 of the Bylaw for full details, and in particular sections 3.5 to 3.9.

Example of Site Plan

Submit to Development Officer

  • Afton Community Center, MacEwen Room
    1552-B Rte. 19, New Dominion PE C0A 1H6 

Your submission should include:

  • Completed Development Permit Application Form with site plan
  • Fee, as per the Fee Schedule on municipal website
  • Any external permits or forms, such as well, septic, driveway, etc.

A decision on a complete application may take up to several weeks

  • Some applications must be reviewed by Council
  • See section 1.6 of the Bylaw for more details

Applications will lead to one of the following:


oDevelopment Permit denied with reasons

oRequest for additional information

oDevelopment Permit approval, with or without conditions

oDevelopment Permit approval with Development Agreement

oVariance included if required and if approved

Notice of decision regarding a Development Permit must be posted within 7 days on the

  • PEI Planning Decisions or Rural Municipality of West River website
  • Bulletin board or other public place in the West River Municipal Office

Any appeal must be submitted to the Island Regulatory and Appeals Commission (IRAC) within 21 days of the date the permit was granted

  • See subsection 28(1.1) of the Planning Act






Development permits take effect once:

  • Signed by all parties
  • All fees are paid
  • All conditions are met

Development permits must be posted in a visible location on the property

Development permits are valid for 24 months

  • If construction is not completed prior to expiry, any new requirements may apply to the project.

Civic numbers are assigned by the Province after the permit is issued

Development Permit Application Guide