Bylaws by topic
Below you can find topic summaries for our City of Calgary bylaws.
For copies of all City bylaws, see the City bylaw library or search Council and committee meetings documents and bylaws.
View bylaws by topic
Appliances and refrigerators: Bylaws related to appliances and refrigerators exist in order to maintain safe and tidy communities. Under the Community Standards Bylaw, refrigerators and freezers must have hinges and latches, or lids and doors, removed before they can be stored outside. Fines for violations range between $200 and $300.
Addresses: Under the Community Standards Bylaw, all property addresses must be clearly visible from the roadway and clearly displayed at the back of your property, if adjacent to an alley or public walkway. Fines for violations range between $100 and $300.
Businesses: The City of Calgary regulates many types of businesses through the Business Licence Bylaw. The bylaw ensures public safety, consumer protection, and service quality.
Building and structure maintenance: Under the Community Standards Bylaw, all balconies, decks, fences, porches and stairs must be kept in "good repair." Fines for violations range between $100 and $300.
Cats: Under the Responsible Pet Ownership Bylaw, cat owners must ensure their cats are licenced, remain on their property and do not damage others' property. Fines range from $25 to $1,500.
Cannabis: Through the Land Use Bylaw, businesses that provide medical cannabis counseling must have a development permit and abide by location restrictions.
Composting: Under the Community Standards Bylaw, you must ensure composting piles or composting containers are maintained so they do not create offensive odours or attract pests. Fines for violations range between $50 and $100.
Dogs: Under the Responsible Pet Ownership Bylaw, dog owners must ensure their dogs are licensed and under their care and control at all times. Fines for failing to comply with the Responsible Pet Ownership Bylaw range from $25 to $1,500.
Election signs: It is important that all registered candidates who participate in an election understand and comply with the Temporary Signs on Highways Bylaw. If any signs are found in contravention, the candidate shall be held responsible for any fines levied. Fines for violations range between $75 and $1000.
Fire hydrants: To help ensure community safety, the Calgary Fire Department needs unhindered access to fire hydrants located on or adjacent to your property. Obstructions such as hedges, shrubs, trees, fences and the accumulation of materials are not permitted near the hydrant. Fire hydrants regulations and fines are found in the Water Utility Bylaw.
Fire pits: Under the Community Standards Bylaw, fire pits cannot be within two meters of the property line, building or fence, or beneath any trees or branches (or other combustible materials). Fines for violations range between $500 and $5000. Repeat offenses of these regulations may result in a fire ban for the premises.
Garbage: While the Waste Bylaw is the main bylaw related to garbage disposal in the city, sections of the Community Standards Bylaw and Traffic Bylaw also relate to the burning and transportation of waste materials. Fines for violations of these regulations range between $125 and $1,000.
Glenmore Reservoir: Under the Water Utility Bylaw, people are prohibited from going in the water or on the ice at the Glenmore Reservoir and cannot place any item in the water or on the ice. Fines for violations are $100.
Graffiti: Under the Community Standards Bylaw, applying graffiti is illegal and property owners must remove, paint over, or otherwise permanently block graffiti from public view. Fines for violations range between $150 for failure to remove graffiti and $5,000 for applying graffiti.
Graphic flyers: Flyers delivered to Calgary homes showing graphic images of fetuses must: 1) be concealed in an opaque envelope, 2) bear a graphic content warning and, 3) bear the name and address of the sender. Each of the three bylaw requirements carry a penalty of up to $1000 if violated.
Grass and herbaceous plants: Under the Community Standards Bylaw, private property owners must ensure that grasses and herbaceous plants do not exceed between 8 to 15 cm (six inches) in height. Fines for violations range between $100 and $500.
Idling reduction signs: Trucks in residential developments are prohibited from idling for longer than 20 minutes when the truck is stationary or within 150 metres of the residential development. Citizens may also obtain signs to ask motorists to avoid idling in certain areas.
Illegal dumping: When someone deliberately dumps waste on public or private property without consent, they are dumping illegally. This practice is common in out-of-the-way places like parks, back roads, open lots, alleys and newly developing areas.
Littering: Under the Street Bylaw, waste cannot be disposed of on any public property unless in a garbage can or waste bin. If a vehicle is involved in a littering offence, the registered owner of that vehicle may be charged. Fines for violations range between $500 and $1,000.
Lot grading: This bylaw ensures new buildings have a properly graded lot, so water drainage flows away from the structure. For information on fines, search for the Bylaws Related to Drainage page.
Noise: Under the Community Standards Bylaw, residents have the right to not be disturbed by noise and, therefore, have the responsibility to not make noise that disturbs others. Fines for violations range from $100 to $200.
Nuisances: Nuisances escaping residential property such as light, noise and airborne matter, are regulated by the Community Standards Bylaw. Whether a complaint constitutes a nuisance is determined by the court. Fines for violations range between $300 and $500.
Outdoor lights: Under the Community Standards Bylaw, owners or occupiers of a premise must not allow outdoor light to shine directly into the living or sleeping areas of an adjacent residence. Fines for violations range between $100 and $300.
Panhandling: The Panhandling Bylaw regulates when, where, and how panhandling can take place. A panhandler cannot obstruct the passage of, walk next to, or follow the person being solicited and a panhandler cannot solicit money from an occupant in a motor vehicle.
Parking: Under the Traffic Bylaw, a vehicle must be operable and moved within 72, hours or it may be considered abandoned and removed. The Calgary Parking Authority enforces parking enforces bylaws under the Calgary Traffic Bylaw and the Calgary Parking Bylaw, including parking within an alley or within disabled zones.
Parking Recreational vehicles:Under the Traffic Bylaw, RVs can be parked on a street immediately adjacent to the owner's residence for a maximum of 36 hours. Under the Community Standards Bylaw, RVs may be parked on driveways for up to 36 hours. Fines for violations of these regulations on public property range between $40 and $200.
Parks and Pathways: Activities prohibited in Calgary's parks and on the pathways are outlined in the Parks & Pathways Bylaw. These include rules around speeding on pathways, keeping dogs on a leash and not damaging City trees. Fines for violations of these regulations range between $50 and $500.
Property addressing: Activities prohibited in Calgary's parks and on the pathways are outlined in the Parks & Pathways Bylaw. These include rules around speeding on pathways, keeping dogs on a leash and not damaging City trees. Fines for violations of these regulations range between $50 and $500.
Public behaviour: The Public Behaviour Bylaw was established to regulate problematic social behaviours that may have a negative impact on the enjoyment of public spaces in Calgary. Under the bylaw, harassment in public spaces, fighting, defecating, urinating, spitting, loitering or placing one's feet on tables, benches, planters, or sculptures is not permitted in a public place. Fines for violations of these regulations range between $50 and $300.
Safe & Inclusive Access: The Safe and Inclusive Access bylaw limits the time, manner and location of specified protests within the vicinity of recreation facilities and libraries, creating ‘access zones’ to ensure everyone can safely access public facilities.
Signage: Temporary signs, including election signage, are regulated under the Temporary Signs Bylaw. Under the bylaw, a temporary sign cannot be placed closer than 30 metres to any intersection, City bus shelter, transit bench, bus zone, LRT station, or LRT platform. Fines for violations of these regulations range between $75 and $1000. The School Safe Zones Temporary Signs on Highways Bylaw (29M97) Amendment restricts advocacy messaging on public streets near schools, due to the harmful impact this messaging has on unwilling viewers.
Smoke: Under the Community Standards Bylaw, a person must take reasonable precautions to ensure that smoke, dust or other airborne matter does not escape the premises and/or disturb any other person. Fines for violations range between $100 and $500.
Smoking: Smoking is regulated under the Tobacco Reduction Act, as well as the municipal Smoking Bylaw. The act prohibits smoking in all public premises and workplaces.
Snow and ice: Under the Street Bylaw, owners/occupants of a home are responsible for the complete removal of snow and ice from all City pathways and sidewalks, adjacent to the front or side of their property, within 24 hours after the snow stops falling. If a Warning Notice is sent but the removal is still not done, the property owner will be fined and charged for a removal service. The fine for not removing snow/ice from a sidewalk/pathway is $250, with an escalating scale for subsequent convictions to the same property owner/occupant over a 12-month period.
Stormwater: The Stormwater Bylaw and Community Standards Bylaw outline rules for drainage to ensure nothing inappropriate ends up in our rivers. For information on fines, search for the Bylaws Related to Stormwater page.
Streets: The Street Bylaw and the Traffic Bylaw regulate the use of streets and activities to, adjacent or near streets. This includes rules around vehicles, obstructions and recreation.
Trees and shrubs: Trees and shrubs are regulated under the Street Bylaw and protected under the Tree Protection Bylaw. By law, you must keep hedges, trees and shrubs on your property trimmed so they don't interfere with pedestrians on the sidewalks or vehicles using the street or alley. Fines for violations range between $100 and $500.
Truck routes: Under the Truck Routes Bylaw, trucks are only permitted on designated truck routes. Fines for violations of these regulations may reach a maximum of $2,500.
Untidy properties: Under the Community Standards Bylaw, loose garbage, yard waste, bottles, cans, boxes, household furniture, packaging materials, parts of machinery, equipment, appliances and automobile parts must be stored so that they are not visible from outside of the property. Fines for violations range between $200 and $300.
Waste: Hazardous waste, biochemical waste, dead animals, tires, automobile parts, furniture and liquids must not be set out for residential garbage collection. Medical waste, animal waste, sawdust and powdered materials must be packaged and securely tied in double plastic garbage bags. Fines for violations of these regulations range between $125 and $1,000.
Wastewater: The Wastewater Bylaw outlines the rules for disposal of wastewater from industrial, commercial and institutional processes to ensure the protection of our infrastructure and our treatment plants. For information on permits, pre-treatment systems, water quality limits, surcharge fees, potential fines and a copy of the Wastewater Bylaw, visit the Industrial Monitoring Group pages.
Water: Residential water use is regulated by the Water Utility Bylaw. Under the bylaw, all single family and two-family residences must be on a water meter by December 31, 2014.
Weeds: Regulations regarding weeds can be found in the Weed Control Act, the Weed Control Regulation and the Community Standards Bylaw. Under the law, private property owners must ensure that weeds on their property are under control and do not spread to other properties.
Yards: Yard maintenance is regulated by the Community Standards Bylaw and includes all the bylaws related to properties that are listed above.
Filing a complaint
To contact us for general information, questions or to report a bylaw infraction, please call 311 (from within Calgary) or 403-268-CITY (2489) (from outside Calgary).