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Permits and regulations

Home under construction

Building permits and regulations are enforced by the City of Vancouver to ensure safety and livability for you, your neighbours, and future property owners and residents.

To keep Vancouver safe and liveable, the City:

  • Reviews permit applications, and enforces regulations in a fair and consistent manner
  • Is working hard to decrease the length and complexity of the permit process by introducing online services and more efficient processes 
  • Enforces procedures to protect historic buildings and our urban forest during development and renovations

Development and Building Services Centre: more services, one location

Our Services Centre has moved from City Hall East Wing to 515 West 10th Ave (at the northwest corner of Cambie St and West 10th Ave). The East Wing is now closed.

Free 2-hour parking is offered at the surface parking lot on West 10th Ave between Cambie St and Yukon St.

When you arrive at the Services Centre, check in with staff on the ground floor about:

  • Commercial parking permits
  • Courier drop-offs
  • Development and building enquiries, including general enquiries about inspections, planning, rezoning, landscaping, and building code
  • Development and building permit application intakes for all projects, including one- and two-family dwellings, with pre-booked appointments
  • Development cost levy and development cost charge payments
  • Building plan copies
  • Business licence applications and changes
  • Field review submissions for minor permit alterations with pre-booked appointments
  • Inspector appointments
    • Appointment required, phone 3-1-1
  • Pickup of permits with pre-booked appointments
  • Planning staff appointments
  • Property research, sign permits and subdivision inquiries
    • Appointment required, phone 3-1-1
  • Taxi and limo licences
    • Appointment required, phone 604-873-7555
  • Tenant improvement program permit application submissions
    • Appointment required, phone 604-873-7611
  • Trades permits
  • Tree permits

How the City will help you

Trying to avoid getting a permit to save money can end up costing you time, and money. If you are unsure whether or not you need a permit, call the Development and Building Services Centre at 604-873-7611.

The pages in this section will prepare you, so you can speak with your contractor with confidence, and have the information you need to get started.

Avoid delays to your project

Caution tape

Risks of working without a permit

Renovation or construction work done without a permit can be costly, if you should have had a permit for that work. Learn more here.

The City of Vancouver's staff are here to help you.

When you need a permit

Are you planning a renovation or building project in Vancouver? Find out if you need a permit, and what kind of permit(s) you need.

Get a permit

Building plans with pencil

Apply for and manage your permit

Find out what permits you need, how to apply for them, how much they cost, and more.

Application forms and checklists

View and download the application forms or checklists for projects which will require a development permit, building permit, or development-building (combined permit).

Know the rules

All new and retrofit buildings require adequate storage for garbage and recycling.

Garbage and recycling storage facilities

Get the developers' guide to building garbage and storage facilities to meet building code, and zoning and development bylaws.

Shelves of boxes in storage at the Archives.

Regulations, bulletins, and advisories

Learn about the regulations that apply to construction and development in Vancouver, and the bulletins and advisories that update those regulations.

Learn about building in Vancouver


Statistics on construction activity

View data about construction-related activity in the City of Vancouver.

Zoning districts, maps, and regulations

Laptop on lawn

Find the zone for an address

Find out what zone an address is in. Zoning districts have regulations stating what kind of development is allowed in that area.

Portion of the colour-coded zoning map of Vancouver

View a map of zoning districts

View of map of Vancouver zoning districts. Find out what zone an address is in. Zoning districts have regulations stating what kind of development is allowed.

Portion of zoning district description summary

Zoning district descriptions

Each City of Vancouver zoning district has a corresponding district schedule in the Zoning & Development Bylaw, which describes the permitted land use and development for the area.

Ask. Tell. Connect.

Phone 3-1-1 to ask, tell, and connect with the City

Outside Vancouver:

Speak your own language

When should you call 9-1-1? Click to find out       Deaf? Have difficulty speaking? Click to learn how to make a TTY call

More ways to contact us

Contact the Development and Building Services Centre about building and zoning


Location and mailing address
Development and Building Services Centre
Ground floor
515 West 10th Avenue
Vancouver, BC V5Z 4A8

Monday, Wednesday, Friday
8:30am to 4:30pm

Tuesday, Thursday
8:30am to 4:00pm

Free 2-hour parking
West 10th Ave parking lot,
between Cambie and Yukon

Get news from Building and Development Services

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Do you need an inspection?


City inspectors can help you make sure that construction or renovation work is done safely, and complies with relevant bylaws.

Learn about inspections

Have a construction concern?

The City encourages safe and tidy construction activity that is—when necessary—approved with permits.

Tell the City about a construction concern
Permit appointmentsWhen you need a permitRisks of working without a permitApply for and manage your permitApplication forms and checklistsRegulations, bulletins, and advisoriesConcerns about construction workStatistics on construction activityGarbage and recycling storage facilitiesChief Building Official