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Important Zoning Information for Hamilton Landscape Contractors

Important Zoning Information for Hamilton Landscape Contractors
Posted in Industry Posted on April 07, 2015

The City of Hamilton has proposed a bylaw that would prevent landscape contracting businesses from operating on agricultural or rural properties unless the primary land use is as a nursery. This means that, under the proposed bylaw, landscape contractors can only legally operate out of a rural or agricultural property if 65% of the lot area is used to grow shrubs, trees or plants. The proposed bylaw also places limits on lot size, building size, outdoor storage and number of vehicles.

At a public meeting held on March 31st, Landscape Ontario (LO) and other interested parties spoke out against the zoning change, arguing that rural and agricultural properties are best suited to the needs and unique challenges of landscape contractors (read the LO presentation here). They proposed that, at minimum, existing businesses affected by the change be allowed to continue operations from these properties under a “grandfather” clause. This recommendation was accepted by the Planning Committee but must still be approved by Hamilton City Council in June.

While it seems unlikely that the City of Hamilton will force established contractors currently operating out of agricultural or rural properties to relocate, if the proposed bylaw is passed there is a risk that they could legally do so. If you are concerned about the impact this change could have on your business, contact your city councillor.

Landscape Ontario continues to advocate for landscape contractors to be allowed to operate from agricultural and rural land.