Development Engineering Permit Guide

Terms and conditions to get prepared for a Development Engineering (DENG) permit application.

Understanding Development Engineering activities

Development Engineering activities will either be related to projects on private property or the municipal right of way. 

Review the Development Engineering Permit Conditions 

Site Alteration Permit Agreement Template

Site Alteration By-law

Process update starting May 1, 2023: Road cuts

An excavation permit is required for service connection installation (road cuts) within the town’s road allowance. 

To improve the quality of work, longevity of town roads, and public safety, changes in the permitting process have been implemented. Changes include: 

Contractor responsibilities:

  • Apply for the development engineering permit (road cut activity only), using the town’s online services portal by creating an account
  • Provide the required securities. Once the work is complete and has passed final inspection, any remaining securities will be returned to the contractor that provided the securities
  • Provide the town with 48-hour notice before the work begins by contacting Service Oakville
  • Submit an inspection request 

Road cut inspections can take place when the work is complete, even if the other permitted work on the private property is still underway.

Site alterations

A permit is required when moving earth for a residential rebuild, pool, landscaping, additions, commercial development, site plan, condominium, and subdivision. This activity includes:

  • the placing or dumping of fill
  • the removal of topsoil and the alteration of the grade of land on all properties in Oakville

You may be exempt from a permit if your work falls into any of the by-law, schedule “B” exemption categories.

If site plan approval (commercial or industrial property) is being applied for or has been issued, earth moving and/or clearing and grubbing permits will not be issued. If a developer wish to start any works prior to site plan approval, under extenuating circumstances, a site alteration permit may be assessed on a site-by-site basis.

If a subdivision developer wishes to clear, grub and site alter, they may apply for a permit after draft plan approval, prior to pre-servicing or registration.

Additional information

Pool enclosures

All pools require a secure pool enclosure as per the Pool Enclosure By-law. 

If you are planning to install a pool, you require a permit to construct the enclosure. An enclosure (fencing, wall, adjacent building or combination) must meet by-law standards.

The Pool Enclosure By-law defines a pool as any body of water, which is:

  • located outdoors on private property
  • entirely or partially contained by artificial means
  • capable of holding water in excess of 0.61 metres (two feet) in depth at any point
Additional information

Private tree protection or removals

Any work being done on private property that may result in private trees being potentially impacted, damaged or removed requires a permit. 

If any removals are proposed along with earth moving or pools, please indicate so on the Engineering Permit Application.

For more information, please visit the Private Tree Protection page.

Lot grading certification and security releases

Where earth moving activities (like site alterations or pool installations, for example) take place on private property, a Lot Grading Certification is required to be submitted upon completion of the work. 

The certificate indicates that, a Professional Engineer, an Ontario Land Surveyor or a Landscape Architect, has been on site within the past 30 days of the dated certificate, reviewed the work carried out, and confirmed that it meets the design of the approved plan.

In order for the Transportation and Engineering Department to release the permit security, a Lot Grading Certificate and an approved Final Inspection are required. 

A final inspection can be requested by submitting the Lot Grading Certificate to Your request will be forwarded to the Transportation and Engineering department to schedule for an inspection.

Grading and drainage on your property

As a property owner, you are responsible for maintaining your property’s grading and surface drainage. 

Visit the Property Drainage & Grading page for more information.

"Municipal right of way" means land owned by The Corporation of the Town of Oakville as:

  • opened or unopened road allowances for the purposes of operating a public highway under the Municipal Act, 2001
  • a public walkway
  • municipal services (such as a public parking lot listed with the Parking Lot By-law)
  • public utilities

The municipal right of way does not include town lands owned or operated as parkland, creeks and watercourse, and related public trail systems.

Town property is all lands that extend from your front property line to the front property line of the home on the other side of the street.

Excavation (road cuts)

This type of work is associated with constructing or replacing storm sewers, sanitary sewers and watermain, and the respective connections from these services to private property. Additionally, work carried out by utility companies (Bell, Cogeco, Hydro, etc.) to construct or replace their facilities and services.

Excavation of any boulevard, shoulder, ditch and sidewalk is also covered under this permit activity. A Municipal Tree Protection/Removal Permit would also be required.

Driveway work

If you are going to be doing work on your driveway within the town’s property, a Driveway Permit will be required. Please review the Driveway Permits Procedure. A Municipal Tree Protection/Removal Permit is also required.

Driveway work includes the following activities:

  • Constructing a new driveway entrance onto a town roadway, with or without a culvert or requiring a curb cut/fill
  • Altering an existing driveway (widening)
  • Constructing driveway curbs or headwalls on the road allowance
  • Constructing a second driveway to permit a circular driveway
  • Repaving or changing the hard surface, without doing any of the above works does not require a permit.

Driveway work on private property is regulated by the town's Zoning By-law.

Temporary Street Occupation (TSO) – minor and major

If you would like to occupy the Town’s right of way (the road, sidewalk, boulevard, shoulder or ditch) for a short period of time, we call this activity temporary street occupation (TSO).

  • A Minor TSO will allow you to temporarily store (bins, equipment, trailers, etc.) and temporarily place materials (landscape stone, sand, gravel, etc.) on the right of way. A Municipal Tree Protection/Removal Permit is also required.
  • A Major TSO will allow for temporarily occupying municipal lands for cranes, fixed/mobile tracked equipment, hoarding and shoring. Lane and road closures will also require a Major TSO.

Municipal tree protection and/or removal

Any work being done on municipal right of way that may result in either municipal trees being potentially impacted, damaged or removed requires tree protection and a permit from Parks Forestry and an arborist report.

For more information, please visit the Private Tree Protection page.

Unauthorized private use of municipal boulevards, public roads and encroachments

The town's Use of Municipal Right of Ways and Municipal Parking Lots policy and related procedures, and the Municipal Right of Way By-law, indicates that owners or tenants with a property that abuts public road allowances are prohibited from:

  • Constructing parking lots, walls, fences, gate posts, light posts, signs, planter boxes and sprinkler systems
  • Placing large rocks, berms and contoured landscaping
  • Planting hedges, bushes and trees
  • Filling in municipal roadside ditches
  • Installing heating elements within the apron portion (town portion) of a driveway