Secondary Dwelling Bylaw Passed

Marmora and Lake - A newly passed by-law amendment will allow Marmora and Lake residents to build a secondary dwelling unit on their property.

Council passed an amendment to the comprehensive zoning by-law No. 2003-11 at its November 6, 2018 planning meeting.

Chief Building Officer Matt deJong said the decision is a huge step forward for the municipality as it provides an opportunity for affordable, permanent housing on lots that are already owned.

“There are very few empty buildable lots left in the urban area,” deJong said. “This allows people to have a legal suite for their in-laws, or to rent to their kids, or to have tenants.”

Councillor Linda Bracken was in strong support of passing the by-law, stating there is an enormous need for housing in the community.

“I feel this would allow people to keep their homes and pay their mortgages with the extra revenue,” she said. “I can’t see why anyone would ever deny someone access to extra revenue or access to a home. The need for housing in our municipality is huge, and the need for affordable housing is huge.”

The by-law allows for varying options for secondary dwelling units including basement apartments, attached housing, or detached housing.

There are some restrictions and regulations that go along with the by-law, deJong explained.

On rural lots, the minimum lot size for adding a secondary dwelling is four acres. Lots smaller than four acres would require a hydrogeological study before approval would be considered.

In the urban area, lots must have a minimum square footage of 5,920 feet, or measure about 60 by 100 feet. Dwellings must by a minimum of 10 feet away from neighbouring properties on either side and a minimum of 25 feet from the back of the lot.

Finally, no secondary dwellings are permitted within the flood plain or within 300-metres of Crowe Lake, Dickie Lake or Twin Sisters lake, and special restrictions apply within source water protection areas.

DeJong said it’s best for people considering building a secondary unit on their property to visit the municipal office for information on requirements and to obtain permits and approval before undertaking any project.

For more information, contact the municipal office at 613-472-2629.

Jennifer BennettComment