Agricultural Land Reserve
Anyone intending to subdivide within the Agricultural Land Reserve, use their ALR property for non-farm purposes, or include or exclude property from the ALR, must apply to the Agricultural Land Commission (ALC) for permission. The application must be submitted through the ALC website: http://www.alc.gov.bc.ca/
Contact ALC: https://www.alc.gov.bc.ca/alc/content/contact-us
CHANGES TO AGRICULTURAL LAND COMMISSION ACT & REGULATIONS - DWELLING UNITS
On February 22, 2019, amendments to the Agricultural Land Commission (ALC) Act and Regulations came into effect, and made important changes to the rules governing the construction of dwelling units on lands in the Agricultural Land Reserve (ALR). The following is a summary of the key changes as provided by the ALC:
Generally land in the ALR may have no more than one (1) residence per parcel;
The Commission may approve an application for an additional residence if necessary for farm use, but the Commission is prohibited from approving an additional residence otherwise;
The total floor area of a principal residence must be 500 m2 or less in order to comply with the ALC Act;
Provisions facilitating the construction of additional dwellings for farm help, manufactured homes for immediate family members, accommodation above an existing farm building, or (in parts of the province) a second single family dwelling have been deleted from the ALC Act.
Additional information regarding these changes is available at the ALC's web-site, specifically: ALC Information Bulletin #5 - Residences in the ALR.
In light of these changes, the Regional District is no longer able to issue Building Permits for accessory dwellings on lands in the ALR or principal dwelling units with a floor area greater than 500 m2 — irrespective of what may be indicated in the applicable Electoral Area Zoning Bylaw.
Property owners within the ALR seeking to construct an accessory dwelling or a principle dwelling unit with a floor area in excess of 500 m2 are now required to obtain the approval of the ALC prior to submitting a Building Permit application to the Regional District.