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    Tents, awnings, and canopies

    Posted: Monday January 18, 2021

    A building permit may be required for temporary tents, awnings and canopies. The following outlines the requirements for tents, awnings and canopies to ensure that residents, business owners, and events planners are informed of all municipal requirements to maintain public safety in accordance with statutory regulations.

    Tents, awnings, and canopies require a building permit unless exempted below:

    Tent Exemptions*

    A tent or group of tents is exempt from a building permit if all of the following criteria are met:

    • The tent or combination of tents is not more than 60 square metres in aggregate ground area,
    • The tent is not attached to a building, and
    • The tent shall be constructed more than 3 metres from all other structures, including buildings on the same property.

    Awning or Canopy Exemptions*

    • An awning or canopy is exempt from a building permit if the following are met:
    • The awning or canopy is attached to the building and does not project more than 300 millimetres from the face of the building.

    *Requirements for exempted tents, awnings or canopies

    If the tent, awning, or canopy has been exempted from a building permit, businesses must comply with other regulations for public safety, specifically:

    • All fabric, textile, or film, as applicable, is required to be certified to CAN/ ULC-S109 Flame Tests of Flame-Resistant Fabrics and Films or NFPA 701 Fire Tests for Flame Propagation.
    • Tents, awnings, and canopies that are intended to be equipped with a fuel fired appliance or heater, as applicable, shall comply with the clearance and ventilation requirements provided by the manufacturer and all applicable standards.
    • At least two full sides of the outdoor dining area must be open to the outdoors and must not be substantially blocked by any walls or other impermeable physical barriers as per Provincial Legislation.

    Building Permits

    Any tent, awning, and canopy that does not satisfy all requirements for an exemption is required to be erected under the benefit of a building permit. Where a building permit is required, site specific pre-consultation with a Building Official is recommended. Building permits can now be applied for online. 

    Please click here for more information on tent requirements.

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