A storm connection is a pipe that carries stormwater from a property into the City’s sewer system.

Under the Sewers By-law a connection can not be made to the storm sewer. This is to help reduce the amount of stormwater in the sewer system, which in turn will help reduce:

The City encourages residents and businesses to explore ways other than sewer connections to manage their stormwater; however, a property may be eligible for storm sewer connection exemption(s) if:

  • The City determines that keeping the stormwater on site will create a hazard, or
  • As part of an application relating to re-development, upgrading or renovation:
    • downspouts are inside the walls of the building.
    • downspouts cannot be physically moved due to heritage designation.
    • the footprint of building has no setback from the edge of the property line.
    • there is a limited area for landscaping and infiltration due to the footprint of the building.
    • discharge is directing onto neighbouring property or public sidewalk and cannot be redirected.
    • potential for runoff flowing towards the building foundation.
    • potential for causing erosion or an unstable slope condition, water ponding and basement flooding.
    • high groundwater table reduced the effectiveness of other types of stormwater management.

How to Apply for a Storm Connection Exemption

To begin the process, you must submit the fee payment.

Depending on the number of staff hours required to complete the technical review, some money may be refunded to you once the review has been completed.

Submission of payment and supporting documentation must be made in-person at the following City office, open Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Toronto Water Counter, 2nd Floor
North York Civic Centre
5100 Yonge St.
Toronto ON M2N 5V7

Payments for the application process will be accepted by credit card, debit, certified cheques or bank drafts. Accepted credit cards include Visa, MasterCard and American Express.

At the time of payment, you must demonstrate the need for the exemption in a report prepared by a licensed, professional engineer. The report must include the following information:

  • A clear explanation as to why a direct storm connection is required.
  • A drawing of the existing drainage system, measurements, grades and observations.
  • Reasonable estimates of quantities of water discharged from sump pumps and downspouts.
  • Directions of surface flows, both onto and off of the property, based on site grading.
  • Elevation of local groundwater table in relation to the footing drains.
  • Recommendations for managing the water.

Complex applications may require more information

  • Please note that preparation of a Stormwater Management Report, in compliance with the Wet Weather Flow Management (WWFM) Guidelines, is required for multi-unit residential, industrial, commercial or institutional premises.

Single family residence

  • The installation date is coordinated with the applicant after the City has established the fee for the work and the applicant has paid for the service installments.
  • The installation date is usually within two to three months of the City receiving the fee payment.

Commercial, institutional or multi-unit residential

  • The installation date is coordinated with the applicant after the City has established the fee for the work and the applicant has paid for the service installments.