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Driveway Permit

A front driveway of a residential house in Surrey.

Residential property owners who want to construct a new driveway must apply for a permit. Driveways are usually approved when a Subdivision or Building Permit is issued by the City. Otherwise, a separate application is required.

Each single-family or duplex lot is permitted one driveway (see Corner Lots and U-Shaped Driveways below for possible exceptions). The Engineering Front Counter can provide information on the zoning of properties and the classification of roads. This information is also available on COSMOS, the City’s online mapping system.

Existing driveways must be removed and the curb, sidewalk and boulevard restored. Additionally, approval for the continued use of existing driveways is required. 

How to apply

Bring the required documents to the Engineering Front Counter at City Hall.

Required documents

A good quality scaled drawing prepared in metric units at a scale of 1:500 is required. The plan must show the legal property lines and dimensions of the subject lot, address of the property, property frontage, existing and proposed driveway, sidewalk, ditch or boulevard, and all aboveground utilities and obstructions. You may wish to use COSMOS, the City’s online mapping system, to help you with this. Review the Driveway Culverts page if you wish to install a driveway culvert.

Driveway Design

All construction shall be completed in accordance with the Master Municipal Construction Document and the City’s Design Criteria Manual.

Excerpts from the Supplementary Standard Drawings are provided below. Please note that these cover typical driveways only. Certain areas or situations (e.g. if a culvert is required, or in Bridgeview or South Westminster) may require different standards and additional approvals. 

  • Driveways shall be preferably 6.0 m wide (4.5 m wide minimum, 6.0 m maximum).
  • A minimum of 1 m clearance must be provided to all obstructions, e.g. utility poles.
  • A minimum of 1.5 m clearance must be provided to the side property lines (this may be relaxed in cul-de-sac bulbs to allow shared driveways within the City road allowance).
  • Driveways must intersect the street at right angles.
  • Driveways must be paired for properties with less than 18 m of frontage to accom-modate on-street parking.
  • The minimum spacing between driveways is:
    • Local roads: 9 m (unless required to be paired)
    • Collector roads: 25 m (unless required to be paired)
    • Arterial roads: 50 m
  • Driveways should be located outside of any underground utility connections.
  • Driveways must be located outside the drip line of trees (consultation with an arborist may be required).
  • Driveway grade for a minimum of 6 m within private property should be a maxi-mum of 5% to avoid “bottoming out”.

Driveway Location

Driveways to Collector or Local Roads

  • Each single-family or duplex lot is permitted only one driveway (see Corner Lots and U-Shaped Driveways below for possible exceptions).
  • A driveway is only permitted to a collector road if the property does not have lane or local road access.
  • Driveways must be located a minimum of 9 m from a local road or lane, and a minimum of 25 m from a collector road.

Corner Lots    

  • If a lot fronts two local roads, two driveways may be permitted (one on each front-age), provided the locations do not affect traffic safety or operation.
  • Driveways must be located as far as possible from intersections. Please note that this means that side-entry garages are usually not appropriate for corner lots.

U-Shaped Driveways

  • At the discretion of the City, a U-shaped driveway may be permitted for properties zoned RH-G or less dense.
  • The minimum spacing between driveways is 11 m (meaning at least a 26 m frontage), and may be greater on collector and arterial roads, at the discretion of the Engineer.

Cost/fees

The Driveway Permit fee is due at the time of your application.

Related bylaw

Zoning By-law No. 12000 regulates the construction of driveways, for example:

  • Paved area within the front or side yard cannot exceed 33% of the total front or side yard.
  • Recreational vehicle parking is permitted within the rear yard for properties with lane access.
  • Recreational vehicles can be parked on the driveway or within the side yard, provided it is no closer than 1 metre to the property line (screening may be required).

Other permit information