Demolition control

Demolition control approval is required by the Chief Building Official before you can apply to demolish a residential unit. It does not apply to commercial, industrial, institutional or accessory buildings.

On this page

  1. About demolition control
  2. Application process
  3. Fee
  4. Review process
  5. Next steps

About demolition control

Demolition control allows the city to manage the demolition of residential units and maintain the integrity of neighbourhoods. It also prevents parcels of land from becoming vacant for long periods of time before new uses have been considered and constructed.

Full regulatory details are in the Demolition Control Bylaw.

If the proposed demolition is part of a development that requires approval from the Committee of Adjustment or Site Plan Review Committee, it must receive a recommendation for approval before it proceeds to demolition control. This flow chart (PDF) shows how demolition control fits with other planning processes.

Application process

To complete a successful application you must:

  • provide the following documents and upload them for each application:

    1. If the applicant is the purchaser or the purchaser's agent, a copy of the portion of the agreement of purchase and sale that authorizes the purchaser to make the application in respect of the land that is the subject of the application.
    2. A sketch showing the following:
      • project name
      • applicant name
      • name of the firm preparing the plans (if applicable)
      • dimensions provided in metric 
      • elevation
      • scale of the drawing
      • north symbol
      • municipal address
      • names of adjacent streets
    3. Photographs of the buildings to be demolished
    4. The environmental screening questionnaire
    5. The water source protection screening form
    6. The Notice of Source Protection Plan document (if relevant)
    7. Any other documents identified as required during a pre-application consultation with city staff if one has taken place.
Source water protection

All applications must comply with the Region of Waterloo’s source water protection plan. Follow this process to ensure your pre-consultation application is complete:

  1. Go to the region's source water protection map.

  2. Click on "I need a document for a building permit or development application" and enter location.

  3. Answer questions as prompted and download Notice of Source Protection Plan document.

  4. Save the document and include it in your application.

If you have issues with obtaining the required documentation from the Region's website, contact to obtain your Section 59 Notice. Provide the address in question, reference City of Waterloo Demolition Control, and include the description of the proposal in the request.


The application fee for one building is $620, with an additional charge of $282 for each extra building. We accept cash, cheque or debit. You can pay for your application:

  1. In-person at the IPPW counter on the second floor of Waterloo City Hall
  2. Send a cheque (payable to the City of Waterloo) via mail to:
    ATTN: Development Planning
    100 Regina Street South
    PO Box 337, Station Waterloo
    Waterloo, ON
    N2J 4A8
  3. Deposit a cheque (payable to the City of Waterloo) in the secure drop box at the William Street side of the Waterloo City Hall building. Write "ATTN: Development Planning" on the cheque memo.

Review process

  1. After submitting a complete application, the review process usually takes up to 10 business days.
  2. If the application is consistent with the city's Demolition Control requirements, the Chief Building Official will make a decision. If it isn't, the application will be referred to city council with a staff report for consideration.
  3. You will be notified when your application is approved.

Next steps

If your application is approved, you have to apply for a Demolition Permit before work can begin.

If council denies your application you can discuss your options with staff. 

If you have questions about your application, email