Country Residential

Land within the Country Residential category will accommodate multi-parcel residential subdivisions that are rural in character. These subdivisions have relatively large lots but are designed according to cluster or conservation subdivision principles to preserve open space and farmland.


9-1          Provide for planned country residential development and subdivision that is economical, safe and sustainable.

9-2          Encourage innovative Country Residential subdivisions in appropriate locations that are sustainable, provide for rural housing and rural convenience commercial needs, and integrate with existing rural development

9-3          Provide for planned country residential development that optimizes the use of existing and planned infrastructure.

9-4          Provide well designed developments that minimize land use conflicts.


9.01         Designation on Regional Map. Country residential development shall be sited in areas designated as Country Residential on the Regional Land Use Map attached to this Plan as Exhibit 2.

9.02         Location Requirements for Country Residential Development. New Country Residential subdivisions shall not be located:

a.   on significant wildlife habitat lands;

b.   in locations where it may cause or contribute to the degradation of ecological and hydrological systems;

c.   on hazard lands, unless mitigation of the hazard is proven to the satisfaction of the municipality; and

d.   within the separation distances as detailed in Policy 7.06.

9.03         Considerations for Country Residential Development. When reviewing Country Residential subdivision proposals, the RM should consider the capacity of existing school and bus facilities or the feasibility of expanding this capacity to accommodate the proposed development

9.04         Preferences for Country Residential Development. Preference shall be given to Country Residential subdivision proposals that:

a.   minimize the pressure to develop, expand or upgrade services and infrastructure inconsistent with Concept Plans and servicing plans;

b.   include significant natural or built amenities or other features that provide for a high-quality living environment; and

c.   incorporate innovative features to promote environmental and social benefits to the community.

9.05         Considerations for Country Residential Subdivision Design. Proposed Country Residential subdivision designs shall have consideration for:

a.   the carrying capacity of the lands proposed for development and the surrounding area based on site conditions, environmental considerations and potential impacts, and other factors that may warrant consideration in the design of the proposal;

b.   minimizing impacts on regional drainage patterns and other regional ecological systems;

c.   the suitability and availability of municipal and other services and infrastructure necessary to support the proposal; and

d.   the compatibility of the proposed subdivision design with that of the surrounding area.

9.06         Sustainable Country Residential Subdivision Design Principles. New Country Residential subdivision proposals shall incorporate environmentally sustainable subdivision design principles including but not limited to:

a.   protecting and incorporating existing features and landscapes including natural areas, natural vegetation buffers, habitat corridors for wildlife movement, cultural and heritage resources, important ecological areas, topographic features and environmentally sensitive lands, wetlands, drainage systems, and groundwater recharge areas and

b.   minimizing the length of roads constructed within the subdivision.

9.07         Integrated Recreation in Country Residential Subdivisions. Integrated recreational development shall be considered within a Country Residential subdivision where it complements existing and proposed communities, subject to:

a.   submission of a Comprehensive Development Review;

b.   rezoning the parcel to an appropriate zoning district; and

c.   satisfying the recreational policies contained herein.

9.08         Area and Density of Country Residential Subdivision with Integrated Recreation. Where a substantial active public recreational amenity is being proposed as part of a Country Residential subdivision, the RM may relax the maximum development area requirement in an amount equivalent to land allocated to the amenity, and/or reduce minimum lot sizes for the subdivision.

9.09         Consideration of Adjacent Development. Where a Country Residential subdivision is proposed on lands abutting an existing Country Residential development, the RM shall require the proposed development to be designed to complement the existing development. This may include measures such as visual buffering, building site separation, complementary lot sizing or any other measures necessary to achieve compatible land use and development.

9.10         Country Residential Development Adjacent to Urban Areas. New Country Residential subdivisions shall not be located adjacent to the boundary of an urban municipality unless the proposal:

a.   is compatible with current and planned urban land uses within the adjacent urban municipality;

b.   will not place pressure on the adjacent urban municipality to develop, expand or upgrade services and infrastructure without an agreement for servicing and infrastructure costs between the urban municipality and the RM; and

c.   is referred to the adjacent urban municipality for review in accordance with the policies of this Plan.

9.11         Country Residential Development Adjacent to Future Urban Growth Areas. Country Residential subdivisions located adjacent to future urban growth areas shall be referred to the adjacent municipality for review and comment under the referral process established in Policy 29.07.

9.12         Home-Based Businesses in Country Residential Areas. At the discretion of the RM, home-based businesses may be located within Country Residential subdivisions, where these uses are consistent with the residential use and character of the area.

9.13         Integrated Commercial Development in Country Residential Areas. Rural Convenience Commercial development may be located within a Country Residential subdivision where it complements existing communities. This is subject to:

a.   submission of a Comprehensive Development Review;

b.   rezoning the parcel to an appropriate zoning district; and

c.   satisfying the commercial policies contained in this Plan.

9.14         Conditions of Subdivision of Existing Country Residential Lots. The re-subdivision of lots within existing Country Residential developments may be considered subject to rezoning the parcel to an appropriate zoning designation and compliance with the following criteria:

a.   the parcels for subdivision are at least one and a half (1.5) times larger than the average lot size of the original registered subdivision plan area;

b.   the resulting lots shall be larger in size than the smallest lot in the original registered subdivision plan area;

c.   the subdivision is not intended to provide for a uniform increase in density throughout the original registered subdivision plan area

d.   the subdivision shall be consistent with all relevant policies within this Plan;

e.   the subdivision shall not be detrimental to the health, safety and general welfare of the existing community;

f.    the resulting lots shall each be connected to a centralized potable waterline; and

g.   the subdivision shall make efficient use of existing infrastructure.

9.15         Requirements for Subdivision of Existing Country Residential Lots. The re-subdivision of lots within an existing Country Residential development shall require:

a.   referral to the Hamlet Board, if located within an Organized Hamlet;

b.   consultation with the condominium board, if located within a condominium;

c.   an assessment of the servicing and transportation impacts of the re-subdivision; and

d.   public consultation, if two (2) or more new parcels are created.