Zoning Bylaw Update

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The City is completing a comprehensive review and rewrite of the current Zoning Bylaw (Bylaw No. 8000) alongside the 2040 Official Community Plan to meet the needs of our growing community.

How to get involved

Take a look at the what's changing in the new draft Zoning Bylaw, then:

Engagement closes on November 12.

Have a question? Let us know.

What's changing

The updated draft Zoning Bylaw aims to meet the following key objectives:

  1. Consolidate zones
  2. Consolidate land-use categories
  3. Update building height regulations
  4. Allow Towers and mid-rise buildings in Capri-Landmark Centre
  5. Simplify the density bonusing policy
  6. Provide a more streamlined, modernized, and user-friendly policy

Click to enlarge the image below and learn more about the changes in the draft version of the updated Zoning Bylaw.


View the draft zoning map

Click to open the interactive map below to look up the proposed zoning and land uses found within the draft Zoning Bylaw. A PDF version of the map is also available.


Project Background

A Zoning Bylaw is a document that regulates how land, buildings and other structures can be used. The current Zoning Bylaw No. 8000 was adopted in 1998 and has been amended over the years to respond to changes and new community initiatives.

The proposed updates in the draft Zoning Bylaw are intended to align with Imagine Kelowna and the City’s 2040 OCP, meet current Provincial legislative requirements, and respond to current development and real estate trends. The updates also consider the recommendations contained within several Council-approved planning initiatives and projects including: the City's Healthy Housing Strategy, Capri-Landmark Urban Centre Plan, Transportation Master Plan, Agriculture Plan, Climate Action Plan, and Urban Centre Roadmap, as well as recent changes to the BC Building Code.

Read the FAQs to learn more.

The City is completing a comprehensive review and rewrite of the current Zoning Bylaw (Bylaw No. 8000) alongside the 2040 Official Community Plan to meet the needs of our growing community.

How to get involved

Take a look at the what's changing in the new draft Zoning Bylaw, then:

Engagement closes on November 12.

Have a question? Let us know.

What's changing

The updated draft Zoning Bylaw aims to meet the following key objectives:

  1. Consolidate zones
  2. Consolidate land-use categories
  3. Update building height regulations
  4. Allow Towers and mid-rise buildings in Capri-Landmark Centre
  5. Simplify the density bonusing policy
  6. Provide a more streamlined, modernized, and user-friendly policy

Click to enlarge the image below and learn more about the changes in the draft version of the updated Zoning Bylaw.


View the draft zoning map

Click to open the interactive map below to look up the proposed zoning and land uses found within the draft Zoning Bylaw. A PDF version of the map is also available.


Project Background

A Zoning Bylaw is a document that regulates how land, buildings and other structures can be used. The current Zoning Bylaw No. 8000 was adopted in 1998 and has been amended over the years to respond to changes and new community initiatives.

The proposed updates in the draft Zoning Bylaw are intended to align with Imagine Kelowna and the City’s 2040 OCP, meet current Provincial legislative requirements, and respond to current development and real estate trends. The updates also consider the recommendations contained within several Council-approved planning initiatives and projects including: the City's Healthy Housing Strategy, Capri-Landmark Urban Centre Plan, Transportation Master Plan, Agriculture Plan, Climate Action Plan, and Urban Centre Roadmap, as well as recent changes to the BC Building Code.

Read the FAQs to learn more.

Q&A

Have a question about the Zoning Bylaw update? Ask us here. 

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  • Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Linkedin Email this link

    Hi Staff, I feel that this zoning bylaw, although better than what currently exists, fails to account for the scale of the housing emergency facing young families, individuals, and workers in the city. Is there a reason why rural areas cannot at least all be zoned for a carriage house or suite by default? I would also support 0-setback townhomes as infill development in inner suburbs and 0-parking condos of up to 5 stories in areas within 100m of a every-30-minute transit stop. This, and action to eliminate parking minimums from all developments towers, would be a moderate step in the right direction. Some far-from-liberal cities, such as Auckland, Minneapolis, and San Diego, all no longer have single-family zoning due the recognition of housing crises that are not as serious as the one in Kelowna. My hope would be an end to single family zoning, but I think the city simply needs to do more to support working families while supporting it's goals of mode-shift in transportation.

    Davis Kyle asked 3 months ago

    Hello and thank you for your interest in the draft new Zoning Bylaw and reaching out to the project team with your inquiry.  

    The focus of the 2040 OCP is to develop density within the existing urban areas of the community. Developing density on the outer edges of the community away from amenities reduces the livability of units, as well increase the cost of infrastructure and service delivery costs. 

    Party wall or zero lot line townhouse development is a permitted multi-family ground oriented development format that is permitted in areas with multi-family land use designations and zoning.

    Major transit corridors have additional density allocated through the 2040 OCP and is reflected in the proposed new Zoning Bylaw. Transit stops are difficult land marks to attach density to because they can be moved and relocated as development occurs, altering density level and locations.

    The City is proposing a new Zoning Bylaw in line with the 2040 OCP and reflecting the significant community input that formed a part of this guiding community planning document. Within the 2040 OCP single family development is not removed as a permitted future use, but new single family development is limited to areas of infill and areas within existing Area Structure Plans (ASP).

    The draft new Zoning Bylaw includes a variety of housing formats providing the opportunity for the development community to respond to market demands, including demands for additional housing for families.

    Warm regards.

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    How will be the land owners notified of of Zoning change? For example from A1 to A2? What does it mean to farm status on A1 ALR if it changes to A2. What will happen to watering rights for farm on ALR for A1 if city changes the Zone to A2?

    Vanda Par asked 2 months ago

    Dear Vanda - thank you for your interest in the draft new Zoning Bylaw and reaching out to the project team with your inquiry.  

    All ALR lands are intended to be zoned A1. The City is notifying the community of the new Zoning Bylaw as part of the stakeholder and public engagement process, and is providing opportunities for public questions and input. It is not intended to send individual notifications to each property owner in the City.

    Farm Status is a function of BC Assessment and falls under their jurisdiction. The proposed new Zoning Bylaw does not impact the BC Assessment process for Farm Status evaluation.

    Water use regulations are not regulated under the Zoning Bylaw, therefore will not be altered or impacted by the proposed new Zoning Bylaw.

    Warm regards.

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    Hi, regarding the MF1 zones - how do the sub zones ie.MF (r1) work and under what circumstances are they applied? For example the MF (r1) only allows rental use and no stratification while the current RU7 allows 4 dwellings, not necessarily all rental and stratification is allowed. Is it that the MF1 basically the same as the current RU7 and the sub zones are applied a special cases? I don’t see any sub ones on the city zoning map? Thanks

    Pedro asked 3 months ago

    Dear Pedro - thank you for your interest in the draft new Zoning Bylaw and reaching out to the project team with your inquiry. 

    The sub zone “r” is intended to ensure that rental housing remains available as rental housing into the future, hence the restriction on stratification. An application may include a proposal to include this sub zone as a means of assuring Council and the public that their intent is to build rental housing, and not selling as strata units after construction. Applicants may be seeking variances or other concessions from the City and Council and utilize this tool as a means to assure Council that their concessions as to assist the community with a need for rental housing. It is not intended as a blanket subzone, but an option to be incorporated into specific applications and circumstances where it is warranted.

    Rental zoning has been used under the existing zoning bylaw and have been used for the purpose as noted above with specific site applications as a way to justify concessions/variances or provide assurances to Council and the public.

    Warm regards.

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    I'm very much concerned about the affordability within this City. There are not anywhere close to enough units of family-sized townhomes/condos to address the average salary of the locals here. Year after year there are more luxury builds for elaborate homes in the mountains, lakes and then lux condos and townhomes over half a million. How is this zoning helping with the average local wages here, the low rental supply, the lack of homes where families can grow instead of the tiny size condos that are very expensive? Where is the city planning for those homes? Will there be a program like Surry where the city helps locals with first-time down payments because of the lack of affordability? I want those questions answered.

    CC asked 3 months ago

    Hello and thank you for your interest in the draft new Zoning Bylaw and reaching out to the project team with your inquiry. 

    The City through the 2040 OCP and proposed new Zoning Bylaw are working to provide development opportunities for a variety of housing types and formats, including rental housing. The City through the land use bylaws such as the OCP and Zoning Bylaw works to provide development opportunities to meet the City’s needs today and as it grows into the future. As a local government in BC, City of Kelowna is afforded its authorities and mandates by the Province through Provincial Legislation such as the Local Government Act and Community Charter. The City is also limited to what it is permitted to do and is restricted from exceeding their authority and entering into areas under the jurisdiction of the Provincial and/or Federal Governments. 

    Although unfamiliar with the Surrey program that was referenced nor its parameters and enabling authorities, due to the aforementioned legislative framework, staff would not be able to form such program as part of the City of Kelowna’s Zoning Bylaw.

    Warm regards.

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    Will the City of Kelowna be following the new ALC regulations (Increasing housing flexibility in the ALR) for secondary dwellings on A1 farmland which comes into effect December 31, 2021? And will the effective date for secondary dwelling (not associated for immediate family only) be the same date of December 31, 2021? eg. "On parcels 40 hectares or smaller, if the existing residence is 500 square metres (approximately 5,400 square feet) or less, a second residence of 90 square metres (approximately 970 square feet) or less can be built."

    mp asked 3 months ago

    Hello and thank you for your interest in the draft new Zoning Bylaw and reaching out to the project team with your inquiry.

    At this time, the City does not intend to bring the new ALC regulations into the draft new Zoning Bylaw. The City cannot make any changes until the new ALC regulations come into effect at the end of the year. Once the new ALC regulations go into effect in the New Year, staff will be bringing a report to Council with recommendations for their consideration as to how to proceed. If the recommendations are supported by Council, then the City will begin the process to amend the new Zoning Bylaw to incorporate these changes.

    Warm regards.

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    How is our input on the public forum being considered? Is this a request for thoughtful input that may result in amendment, or simply a necessity to show the public has been involved?

    Wesley S asked 3 months ago

    Dear Wesley - thank you for your interest in the draft new Zoning Bylaw and reaching out to the project team with your inquiry.

    The input on the public forum is being monitored and recorded by the project team. Thoughtful input from all participants is greatly appreciated and valued by the project team. When the public engagement component is complete, an Engagement Summary report will be generated by Staff. This report will be made available to both the public and City Council, who are the ultimate decision-makers. If you have specific questions regarding the draft bylaw, they can be directed to Staff through the “Ask a question” tab on the Get Involved Kelowna | Homepage

    Warm regards.

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    If I'm reading each correctly, the OCP draft shows most of the core area having the future land use designation of MF, but in the zoning draft much of the area remains RU. I know there are pockets of land where you won't want anyone redeveloping yet, like where the new road through landmark is planned, but it seems like most of the Core Area should be opened up to mild, low-height densification. Will this zoning draft make it any easier for developers to rezone to match the future land use designation? Or might the city consider proactively rezoning more of the Core Area to match the future land use designation?

    NathanH asked 3 months ago

    Dear Nathan - thank you for your interest in the draft new Zoning Bylaw and reaching out to the project team with your inquiry.

    The City is not considering the assignment of zoning to match the future land use designation outlined in the draft 2040 Official Community Plan - Core Area. The team is exploring an assignment of zoning in areas identified as Urban Centres only. The proposed draft zoning bylaw acts as an implementation tool of the OCP, and will allow for landowners to bring forth an application for rezoning that is allowable under the policies of the OCP. The Core Area is identified as focusing on multi-family and mixed-use development and the proposed zones in the draft bylaw will allow for this type of development where appropriate.

    Warm regards.

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    My question is regarding the proposed short-term rental accommodation regulations, specifically 9.10.4 where it states no more than one booking or reservation for short-term rental accommodation is permitted in each dwelling unit at one time. Question: what is the rationale for this? Any evidence-based thought? If a host has more than one rooms for short-term rental and is renting them separately, the host won't be allowed to do this under this regulation. Where is the flexibility? This regulation is not business friendly and is lack of understanding of providing support to Kelowna residents. You are updating a great zoning bylaw for developers. However, the needs of local residents should be considered as well. If the guests do not mind to share the dwelling unit with another reservation, why would you mind? Please stop trying to "regulate" the market, that's not your job. You should facilitate the needs of stakeholders and make recommendations, not to proposed regulations based on your own judgement. It is a joke you propose a draft zoning bylaw without engaging the community at the first step. Have you notified the effected landowners? Have you followed the provincial legislations correctly?

    rl asked 3 months ago

    Thank you for your interest in the draft new Zoning Bylaw and reaching out to the project team with your inquiry

    The short term rental (STR) regulations do not have any proposed changes in the draft new Zoning Bylaw. In 2017, Staff initiated a consultation process which resulted in the creation of guiding principles and draft regulations for policy recommendations. In Winter 2019, the STR regulations (as seen in the current Zoning Bylaw) were adopted by Council, along with a Short Term Rental Bylaw. It is an item on Staffs workplan to provide a report back to Council on the current STR regulations in a process that is separate from current Zoning Bylaw update. This is because further engagement with stakeholders and research is required. To review the STR work that was initiated in 2017, including the guiding principles, regulation development process and Staff reports to Council, please visit Short-Term Rentals | Get Involved Kelowna.

    Warm regards.

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    Hello! I'm trying to see if a particular property was re-zoned on the map. It looks like the consolidated zones are the same colour (e.g. MF1-4 are all the same orange/brown) but there are different regulations for M1, M2, M3 etc. Do you have a more detailed map that labels which parcel is which specific zone? The PDF & esri just show the colours (not acronoym labels) from what I see. Thanks!

    lindsayallman asked 3 months ago

    Thank you for your interest in the draft new Zoning Bylaw and reaching out to the project team with your inquiry. 

    To see the new zoning code for a specific parcel, click directly on the parcel and a pop up window will open. Use the right hand arrow at the bottom right hand corner of the pop up to tab right. The pop up will indicate the proposed zone, as well as other helpful information like the purpose of the zone as shown in this image:

    Warm regards.

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    Hi Although the zoning was easy to understand and it was the only question I was disappointed that there were not more questions that people could easily give input. The way it is written, you answer yes to the poll question and it almost refers you ok the change. I don't. I am ok with most of it but for the Heritage area, It was taken off and am so disappointed that happened. I believe we need to restore it. Some zoning and bylaws allowed for some developments already that just don't fit into the neighborhood. I live in it and I get that from all kinds of people walking thru why this or that was allowed. It seems like a plan is brought in and it is almost automatically okayed. I am sure it is not quite like that but it seems to be. The old matter of - it has to fit with form and character of the street in heritage applications is gone. An example is the new duplex at the corner of Abbott and Riverside. I mean everyone I speak to about it cant believe why it was allowed. The only way I see it was, because of the developer. People have spent hundreds of thousands of dollars in this area to upgrade these homes and it looks wonderful. This City and Council seems to want to destroy it. I agree we need infill but not the Heritage area. It is so small and people come here all the time to see the homes. It is a treasure. Will it mostly be gone in 25 years. Most of the houses will be the new modern boxes I bet. They can be elsewhere. The houses all look the same in these new areas. Anyway there is my rant. The rest of the zoning is just fine.

    Rudy S1 asked 3 months ago

    Thank you for your interest in the draft new Zoning Bylaw and reaching out to the project team with your comments and inquiry.

    The Heritage Conservation Area is identified in the “Official Community Plan” which can be found on The City of Kelowna web page here Official Community Plan (OCP) | City of Kelowna. The OCP, along with the Heritage Procedures Bylaw No. 11185 guides development applications in the City’s Heritage Conservation Area. The Zoning Bylaw is a tool to regulate how properties are used and what buildings and structures can be built. It does not regulate the form and character of a building. For more information on the Heritage Conservation Area guidelines and procedures, please refer to the Official Community Plan.

    Warm regards.

Page last updated: 15 November 2021, 10:42