Building & Development
Building permits are required for new construction of buildings and structures and for additions and alterations to existing buildings or structures. If you are unsure if you require a Building Permit, it is always best to ask the Building Inspector before starting any construction.
If you're ready to start your new development or home renovation, applying for the proper permits is your first step.
Building Permit Guide
Do you need a Building Permit? The answer is probably yes if you're planning to build or modify any new or existing structure. The best place to start is with the Building Permit Guide.
The District of Tofino and the District of Ucluelet share a Building Inspector. Tofino building inspection services are provided on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.
24 hours notice is required to book an appointment with the Building Inspector.
Development Permit Areas (DPA) are lands protected by the Municipality through the Official Community Plan for ecological sensitivity, land use or geographic significance, or for development-specific reasons.
If your property falls within a designated Development Permit Area (DPA), you will require approval prior to subdividing land or constructing, adding to, or altering a building. Contact the planning department to find out whether your property is within a designated DPA in Tofino.
If the proposed construction imposes on the boundaries of the DPA, you will be required to submit an application to vary the zoning bylaw requirements, such as the allowance for setback or building height adjustments.
Do I need a development permit?
Development Permit Areas (DPA) are lands protected by the Municipality through the Official Community Plan (OCP) for ecological sensitivity, land use or geographic significance, or for development-specific reasons. To find out if your property falls within a DPA, please see schedules B1-9 of the OCP Bylaw No. 1290, 2021 or contact the planning department.
Development Variance Permit (DVP)
Per the Local Government Act, Municipal council has the authority to approve a Development Variance Permit (DVP) to vary the provisions of a bylaw. For example, this type of permit can vary the provisions of a zoning bylaw, subdivision servicing, park land, parcel frontage on a highway, and other bylaws.
Alternatively, if you feel that compliance with a bylaw would cause hardship, you may apply to Tofino's Board of Variance for a DVP. The Board of Variance focuses primarily on minor matters related to siting, dimensions and size of buildings. For example, if topography is prohibitive to conformity of normal setbacks. The variance must be minor and the Board has several limitations to what types of variances apply.