Central Saanich welcomes your business and we are pleased to answer any questions you may have. If you are planning on opening or altering your business, please review the following.
Before you sign a lease or purchase a commercial space, it is important to confirm that your proposed location complies with zoning regulations as well as the BC Building Code.
Confirming the property zoning is easy! Just check the interactive zoning map to determine the property zoning and then consult with the Land Use Bylaw for the regulations relating to that zone. Permitted uses are located in Part 5, Section 38; parking regulations are found in Part 6.
Every building is designed and constructed for a particular type of use or occupancy, so it is best to check with building inspection staff to be certain that the building works for your proposed business.
Now that you have confirmed that the location and the approved building use works for your new business, permits may be required to make alterations to your space or building.
If you are changing the use or occupancy of any tenant space or commercial building, you will require a building permit prior to any construction or occupancy. Perhaps the use is the same as previous, but if you are planning alterations such as adding or removing walls, a building permit would also be required. Cosmetic improvements, like new flooring or paint, would not require a building permit, if the use was staying the same. Check out the Commercial Building Permits page, or if making minor alterations, refer to the Tenant Improvement Guide.
A plumbing permit would be required for any changes or additions to existing plumbing systems, including backflow prevention devices, lateral connections, storm water detention or sprinkler systems. Licenced plumbers (granted a British Columbia Trades Qualification or TQ) with valid business licence are required to obtain plumbing permits as per the BC Plumbing Code. After an application is submitted, staff will review the submission for compliance with the previously issued building permit and BC Plumbing Code.
Any work to the building exterior, new signage, landscaping, parking, or a change of building use may also require a development permit.
New or replacement business signage (free-standing or attached to the building) will require a sign permit; new signs may also require a development permit.
After confirming zoning and building use and obtained any required permits, you could then submit an application for a business licence.
For information on when a business licence is required, and what the process is, please refer to the page on Business Licences or the Guide to Business Licences.
Depending on the type of business, other related agencies may be required to approve aspects of your operation. This could include Island Health (VIHA) for food facility approvals or the Capital Regional District to deal with waste discharge and backflow prevention devices, as well as the BC Liquor Control and Licencing Branch if necessary. You could also review provincial and local regulations relating to your business by visiting BC BizPal.
Additional resources are noted below, including provincial business tips and contact information.
|Business Licence Officer||250-544-4237|