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Residential Demolitions



Before you start

If there is an existing house on site, a demolition permit must be applied for prior to the acceptance of a single construction permit a new home construction permit that includes the building permit and trades installations for the construction of one dwelling. If you are proposing interior demolition, please refer to calgary.ca/homeimprovement

Note: On June 26, 2017, a change was made to the demolition process that requires a completed and signed off service disconnect sheet when you apply for a demolition permit.

Permits

When is a demolition permit required?

A demolition permit is required whenever you are demolishing or moving a building from a site. This can include partial demolition as well as reducing a house to foundation and rebuilding.

Risks when a permit is not obtained

If you, as a homeowner or contractor, do not have permits for work that has been started or completed, there could be consequences if you do not take action to correct the situation, such as:

  • Enforcement action issued by a city inspector.
  • A fine for building without a permit.
  • Having to undo work that has been completed.
  • Future legal and financial issues when selling your property or making an insurance claim.
  • Having to do more work than was originally planned and budgeted.

Note: As a homeowner, you are responsible for paying any penalties, even if you hired a contractor who assured you permits were not needed. If you're unsure if you need a permit, call the Planning Services Centre at 403-268-5311. Find out if your contractor has a City of Calgary business license with our Licensed Trade Contractor List.

Timelines

We’re committed to providing you with a timely response on your permit application.

The time it takes to complete the disconnection sign-offs depends on the response from each utility provider.

Once the demolition has been applied for, complete applications are issued within two days of the application. You cannot demolish or move a building until the permit has been issued.

Bylaw and code considerations

Asbestos abatement requirements

As a part of the demolition application, the applicant must submit the asbestos abatement form prior to starting demolition. At the pre-demolition inspection, a report must be provided to the building inspector which verifies:

  1. the asbestos has been abated by a professional company, or
  2. the building has been inspected by a professional company and there are no signs of asbestos

Note: If the house was built in or after 1982, the applicant will not be required to provide a report for asbestos testing, and in turn will not require a pre-demolition inspection. If you are unsure of when the original house was constructed, the Planning Services Centre can assist you during time of application.

Tree protection policy

Tree protection during demolition is important, as often times injured trees will not show signs of decline until as late as 10 years after the damage. A tree protection plan is required when a public tree is within six meters of the demolition.

For more information about tree protection plans, visit calgary.ca/treeprotection.

Construction site contact information sign

Construction site contact information signs are provided with the issuance of a demolition permit and are required to be attached to the security fencing and visible from the street. They must be posted any time a construction activity, including demolition, possesses a potential hazard to the public. The owner of the property is required to provide measures to safeguard the public. For information on construction site fencing, please refer to the
Construction Site Fencing advisory​.

Demolition inspections

The inspection for a building demolition must be made through 311 at least 24 hours prior to commencing demolition. Failure to notify may result in a Stop Work Order or enforcement action. This inspection ensures the site is safe prior to demolition and hazardous materials (asbestos) have been removed safely; documentation must be provided as proof. For clarification on the safety code requirements, please contact our Technical Assistance Centre​ or call 311.

Moving a building

Moving a building requires a demolition permit and follows the same demolition process to have services disconnected.

Note: Even if the services have previously been disconnected, a permit is still required. This is to confirm the services are disconnected and to ensure site safety (e.g., open foundation is fenced off, etc).

In addition, if the house is being relocated within the city limits, it will require a building permit for the new location and may require a development permit.

Building movers are required to obtain a permit from City of Calgary Roads when moving a building on a city street.

Moving an accessory residential building that does not have any services does not require a demolition permit, but the building mover still requires a permit from City of Calgary Roads.

Shutting off services only; no demolition planned

Doing work to a building that requires shut-offs with no demolition planned requires calling each individual utility provider to ask for their services to be disconnected. If only the services will be shut off, no demolition permit is required.

Demolishing a detached garage

Detached residential garages and accessory residential buildings

A demolition permit is required for detached residential garages and accessory residential buildings that are over 10 square metres and meet any of the following conditions:

  • The garage or accessory building is independently serviced.
  • The garage or accessory building has the primary utility meters/connections for the residence.

A demolition permit is not required for detached residential garages and accessory residential building that meet any of the following conditions:

  • The garage or accessory building has no utility services.
  • The garage or accessory building will be demolished and replaced with another garage or accessory building (the demolition of the existing structure is included in the permit for the new structure).

If you are demolishing a detached residential garage and not replacing it with another garage, contact Property Assessment at (403) 268-2888.

Heritage designation

All demolition and moving applications require review from a heritage planner. This review will occur after the application has been submitted and must be approved prior to being released.

Demolition process

These instructions are provided as a guide to obtaining a demolition permit. For specific questions regarding the various utilities' procedures and applicable fees, please contact that particular utility office.

Removing a building affects the property assessment and, as a result, the property taxes. All buildings over 10 square meters that will be removed at the time of demolition must be included on the site plan and in the demolition area calculations.

Step 1: Service Disconnect Sheet

Obtain a copy of the service disconnect sheet and determine which utilities will be disconnected. For each utility (water, electrical or gas) a separate approval signature is required on the service disconnect sheet.

Step 2: Utility disconnection

Determine which utilities will be disconnected. For each utility (water, electrical, gas), a separate approval signature is required.

Water

When demolishing a house, the property’s water and sanitary service lines need to be disconnected at The City’s main line located under the street. Water lines should be removed/shut off prior to gas and electrical lines. This will help avoid any risk of damage due to frozen water lines.​

As the lot owner, here’s what you need to know and actions you’ll need to take:

  • Please send us an email with the demolition site address, contact name and phone number.
  • We will reply with a service disconnection quote and application number.
  • Please pay the deposit through The City’s online payment system, Water ePay. The deposit is refundable if the services are disconnected and the lot owner applies for the deposit refund within two years.
  • After paying the deposit, call 311 to book a site visit with The City of Calgary Water meters group. At this appointment, we remove the water meter, shut off the water to your property, and sign the service disconnection request form. If the lot owner can’t attend, please arrange for a representative to be present.

If we cannot turn off the water to your property (e.g. due to infrastructure damage), a crimp procedure can be completed, where the pipe is folded over and closed off. In this situation, the lot owner or representative must contact a contractor to complete this work at the lot owner’s expense.   

Crimp procedure

If a crimp procedure is required, the lot owner must sign an acknowledgment of risk form. Once the contractor completes the crimp work, the lot owner books an inspection by emailing The City. After the inspection passes, The City estimator signs the service disconnection request form. Please allow a minimum of 24-hour notice for the inspection.

Costs and disconnection deposit

The lot owner is responsible for all expenses related to disconnections and new connections, including, for example, replacements and upgrades. The deposit is refundable if the services are disconnected and the lot owner applies for the deposit refund. If the refund is not applied for within two years of the date the deposit was made or the service fails before disconnection, The City reserves the right to disconnect the line and the deposit will not be refunded.

The disconnection deposit can be made on Water ePay by credit or debit card. Please note that some banking institutions may not allow debit cards. As you proceed through the online payment prompts, you will be asked for the application number and the type of quote. The quote types are standard residential disconnection and non-standard disconnection. Standard residential disconnection is used for residences on residential streets with low traffic and regular asphalt/concrete. Non-standard disconnection is used for all commercial and residential properties located in high traffic areas and/or areas with specialty asphalt/concrete.

Deposit
refund

The services must be disconnected from the water and sewer mains for the disconnection deposit to be refunded.  The refund will be made upon request and the request must be made within two years. The City will confirm that an indemnified contractor has completed the disconnections. 

Deposits will be only be returned to the individual who made the original payment. The City recently changed the payment system for deposits so there are two processes for obtaining your refund, depending when you paid the deposit.

Deposits paid in person at The City’s cashier counter

After your indemnified contractor disconnects the existing services at the water and sewer main, and The City issues a Construction Completion Certificate (CCC) to your contractor, please send us an email with the following information:

  • a copy of your receipt
  • the contractor’s name
  • the mailing address for return of deposit

Deposits paid by Water ePay

After your indemnified contractor disconnects the existing services at the water and sewer main, and The City issues a Construction Completion Certificate (CCC) to your contractor, please send us an email with the following information:

  • application number
  • Water ePay receipt
  • contractor name
  • MyID username, contact name and phone number

The deposit is paid back to the credit or debit card that was originally used. If that credit card or debit card is expired, The City will issue a cheque in the name of the credit card holder used to make the original deposit.

Gas

You must visit one of the ATCO Gas locations listed below to make an application for removal. The disconnect has to be completed before an ATCO Gas representative can sign the demolition/removal form.

  • Midnapore Operations Centre, 383 Midpark Boulevard S.E. - 403-254-6200
  • Crowfoot Operations Centre, 500 Crowfoot Crescent N.W. – 403-245-7070
  • Whitehorn Operations Centre,  3055 37 Avenue N.E. – 403-219-8600

Electricity

  • Contact your retailer to request a permanent service disconnect. Refer to your electrical bill for retailer contact information. They will arrange for the update to your account and will generate a service order to have your services permanently removed.
  • After the service has been disconnected, scan and email the service disconnection form to SOC2@enmax.com for authorized sign off. For additional information, phone 403-514-2807.

Waste and recycling

If you have a blue recycling or a black waste collection cart, the cart must be empty and available to be picked up on the same date as your scheduled water service disconnect appointment.

Cable television and telephone

Remember to contact your cable and telephone providers to have these services disconnected prior to demolition.

Step 3: Apply for the demolition permit

Apply for the demolition permit at The City of Calgary Planning Services Centre. The
demolition permit requirement list outlines the items required at the time of application. Once the demolition permit has been applied for, complete applications are issued within two days of application. You cannot demolish or move the building until the permit has been issued.​

Step 4: Permit issuance

Return to the Planning Services Centre with the completed, signed service disconnection request form for processing and issuance of the permit. You cannot demolish or move the building until the permit has been issued.

Step 5: Demolition Inspection

Once you've received your demolition permit, you must schedule a demolition through 311 at least 24 hours prior to commencing demolition.

What documents do I need?

Demolition permit requirement list
Service disconnection request form

Call before you dig

Always call Alberta One Call before you dig: 1-800-242-3447. For more information or to submit a locate request, visit Alberta One-Call.

Disclaimer: This information has no legal status and cannot be used as an official interpretation of the various bylaws, codes and regulations currently in effect. The City of Calgary accepts no responsibility to persons relying solely on this information. Web pages are updated periodically.

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