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Greater Sudbury Airport
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Greater Sudbury Airport
Your journey begins with us. Avoid the hassles of the highway and travel worry-free with the Greater Sudbury Airport. Check here for arrivals, departures, traveller information and more!
Your Local Library
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Your Local Library
Greater Sudbury Public Library is proud to offer a wide range of bilingual services and collections which meet the information and leisure needs of all ages.
Heritage Museums
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Heritage Museums
Discover our rich past. Explore four local museums through digital imaging, audio and video. The site also features the INCO Triangle Digital Archives.
Invest Sudbury
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Invest Sudbury
The Greater Sudbury Development Corporation is the engine for local economic development. Explore initiatives to attract, develop and retain business in our city.
Sudbury Tourism
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Sudbury Tourism
Greater Sudbury is a place for adventure. Choose from world-renowned attractions, urban comforts and outdoor getaways. Packages are available.
Regional Business Centre
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Regional Business Centre
Let us help you find what you need to succeed. Our not-for-profit organization provides information and resources to fund, launch and grow your business, free of charge.

Greater Sudbury

Glossary of Terms

Revisit. Review. Revise Official Plan Review

Greater Sudbury Committee of Adjustment / Sign Variance Committee:

This committee, made up of five citizens, is empowered to grant relief from all zoning and sign by-laws related to land in the City of Greater Sudbury.

Greater Sudbury Planning Committee:

This committee is made up of five members of Greater Sudbury City Council. It meets twice per month, and makes recommendations to Council regarding development or land use matters.

Land Use Planning:

The way we manage our land and resources. Land use planning helps each community to set goals about how it will grow and develop and to work out ways of reaching those goals while keeping important social, economic and environmental concerns in mind. It balances the interests of individual property owners with the wider interests and objectives of the community. Good land use planning is key to ensure orderly growth and the efficient provision of services.

Northern Growth Plan:

A strategic 25-year plan for Northern Ontario that guides decision-making and investment planning. The aims of the Growth Plan are to help attract people and investments to the region, support training, education and employment opportunities, create a highly qualified workforce and position the northern economy to compete on a global scale.

Official Plan:

The Planning Act requires each municipality exercising planning powers in Ontario to have an Official Plan. The Official Plan is a legal document approved by City Council that describes policies and objectives for future land uses. The Official Plan is prepared in consultation with residents and reflects a community vision for future change and development. The Official Plan is a blueprint for how the city will grow over the next 20 years. It describes the location for new housing, employment, parks, office and retail areas, community services, and other land uses. The Official Plan also establishes policies for the built environment, for improvements to the City's hard services (such as transit, roads, water mains, etc.) and for the protection of the city's natural environment.

Planning Act:

The Planning Act is provincial legislation that governs planning in Ontario. The Province of Ontario sets out rules and regulations in the Planning Act which describe how planning processes should be dealt with, how land uses may be controlled and by whom. The Planning Act gives the City the power to create Official Plans and Zoning By-laws which in turn provide direction to the various officials, staff members and other authorities involved in the planning and development decision-making process.

The Planning Act is available here. You can learn more by reviewing the Province's Citizen Guide to the Planning Act.

Provincial Policy Statement:

The Provincial Policy Statement (PPS) is a document prepared and released by the Province of Ontario, which provides policy direction on matters of provincial interest related to land use planning and development. Issued under the authority of Section 3 of the Planning Act, the PPS sets the policy foundation for regulating the development and use of land.

The PPS supports and complements many of the policies contained in the City's Official Plan. City Council decisions related to municipal planning are required, by the Planning Act, to be consistent with the PPS.To learn more about the PPS and obtain a copy, see the Province's website.


If you wish to use, alter or develop your property in a way that does not conform with the Zoning By-law, you must apply for a site-specific amendment to the By-law. You can do this through either a Zoning By-law Amendment application (commonly called a Rezoning) or a Minor Variance application. Rezonings are used for major revisions to the By-law such as land use changes or significant increases in permitted building heights and development densities. City Council makes decisions on rezoning applications. Minor Variances are used for issues such as small changes to building setback or parking requirements, and are considered by the Committee of Adjustment.

Urban Design:

Urban design is the pursuit of creating successful places for people. It is concerned with the appearance, functionality and arrangement of buildings, streets and public space. It examines the connections between people and places, movement and urban form, nature and built fabric. Good urban design contributes to city beauty, vibrancy, safety, and inclusivity, and is an essential ingredient of city building.

Zoning By-law:

The Zoning By-law is the legal document that implements the policies and objectives described in the Official Plan. The Zoning By-law regulates the use and development of buildings and land by stating exactly what types of land uses are permitted in various geographic areas and by establishing precise development standards for lot size and frontage, building setbacks, the height and built form of structures, the number and dimensions of parking and loading spaces, requirements for open space, etc. The Planning Act grants the City the authority to implement land use controls through Zoning By-laws.