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Bylaw enforcement - encroachments - in City right-of-way

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If you wish to report an encroachment (as listed below) on the public road allowance, contact 311 to submit a service request for investigation by Right-of-Way Management.


For clothing drop-boxes see: Licence - bylaw enforcement - clothing drop boxes - on private or City property

For abandoned bicycles see:

Encroachments are defined as anything installed, constructed or planted within the public road allowance that was not installed, constructed or planted by the City. Examples of encroacments into the public road allowance are:

  • Building projections;
  • Fences;
  • Banners;
  • Commercial and industrial boulevard parking;
  • Residential front yard parking;
  • Memorials in streets;
  • Temporary decorative lighting;
  • Signs;
  • Retaining walls;
  • Stairs;
  • Walkways;
  • Areaways;
  • Sprinker systems;
  • Ramps for the physically challenged;
  • Door swings;
  • Public art;
  • Ornamental walls;
  • Piling and shoring;
  • Air conditioning units;
  • Statues;
  • Weigh scales;
  • Conduit;
  • Fuel tanks;
  • Temporary street occupation (such as a disposal bin, contruction site fencing, materials storage);
  • Vegetation sprinkler systems;
  • Lock boxes;
  • Nets (such as hockey nets and basketball nets)

There are three types of encroachments: permitted, delegated and prohibited.

Permitted encroachments include:

  • Soft landscaping, such as flower/vegetable gardens, shrubs, hedges;
  • Fences and retaining walls less than 0.90 m high, measured from the travelled surface of the abutting road;
  • Walkways less than 1.5 m wide;
  • Stairs;
  • Driveway curbs and precast concrete stones.

Permitted encroachments do not require an encroachment agreement with the City, but must be set back at least 0.50 m from the existing curb or 0.50 m from the back edge of the sidewalk and must not extend beyond your property's projected lot lines when the lot line is extended perpendicular to the curb line of the adjoining road. On streets without curbs, no encroachments other than soft landscaping are permitted within 3.0 m of the travelled surface of the road.

With the exception of soft landscaping, which does not require a street work permit from the City, all permitted encroachments require a steet work permit that the City will provide to the property owner, free of charge, provided that the proposed encroachment complies with municipal requirements.

Delegated encroachments are encroachments that can be authorized by ROW management staff provided that the encroachment complies with municipal requirements. Delegated encroachments require that the applicant pay for the preparation of an encroachment agreement as well as any required street work permits.

Requests for encroachments must be made at least eight weeks before the proposed installation date.

Prohibited encroachments are not allowed without community Council approval.

Encroachments that were authorized by any of the six former municipalities are exempt from these requirements provided that the encroachment complies with the terms and conditions of their original approval. This 'grandparenting' becomes null and void when the subject property applies for re-zoning or site plan control approval, or is the subject of an application to the Committee of Adjustment.

Temporary street occupations (i.e. disposal bins and materials storage), are licensed on a daily or annual basis, depending on the activity.

The City does not repair any private encroachment, such as a fence, stair or retaining wall, damaged as a result of road repair, reconstruction, snow removal or street cleaning.

For further information on encroachments, refer to Toronto Municipal Code Chapter 743, Article IV.

Bylaw enforcement - cafe - hot dog carts - boulevard marketing - on City property or private property, are dealt with by Municipal Licensing & Standards.

Bylaw enforcement - waste enforcement complaints - incorrect garbage set out time - incorrect placement of collection materials or bins

If this situation is an encroachment that is causing the obstruction of traffic sight lines please refer to the following:
Sight line obstructions - obstruction of traffic sight lines