2024 Development Charges

Download the Background Study and Draft 2024 DC By-law!

Development Charges Background Study and By-Law

The City of Niagara Falls is updating its Development Charges Background Study and By-Law, and we want to hear from you! There will be several opportunities for engagement throughout the process of setting the new DC rates.

The City has engaged Hemson Consulting Ltd. to update its DC Background Study.

What are Development Charges?

Development charges (DCs) are fees collected from builders and developers to help pay for the capital cost of infrastructure required to provide municipal services to new development. Eligible services include roads, water, storm and sewer infrastructure, parks and recreation, libraries, fire services, etc.

The intent is to ensure that “growth pays for growth” to avoid existing taxpayers having to pay to subsidize the costs related to servicing growth developments.

The Development Charges Act (DCA) outlines statutory exemptions and credits related to the collection of DCs for specific types of development. Further, the City will review its current DC Exemptions and Programs offered above and beyond what is legislated as part of the Background Study Update.

Community Benefits Charges Strategy and By-Law

In tandem with the Development Charges Background Study update, The City of Niagara Falls will also review its Community Benefits Charges (CBC) Strategy and By-Law. There will be several opportunities for engagement throughout the process of updating this strategy.

The City has engaged Hemson Consulting Ltd. to review its CBC Strategy.

What are Community Benefit Charges?

Community Benefit Charges (CBC) are a newer funding source for growth-related capital expenditures enacted under the Planning Act. CBCs are to be levied against higher-density development with five or more stories and ten or more residential units. Community benefit charges replaced the previous “Density Bonusing” regime under Section 37 of the Planning Act.

The City’s current CBC By-Law came into force on September 12, 2022, and is required to be reviewed at least every five years. This exercise aims to “review” and determine if an update is required to align with the new DC Study.

The City of Niagara Falls’ CBC charge is 4% of the land value, which gives the development community certainty to estimate the maximum amount that can be levied.

The following developments are exempt from CBCs:

  • Long-term care homes and retirement homes
  • Universities, colleges and Indigenous Institutes
  • Memorial homes, clubhouses or athletic grounds of the Royal Canadian Legion
  • Hospices
  • Non-profit housing

Coordination with Complementary Initiatives

The City of Niagara Falls has several complementary initiatives underway, some of which will help inform and contribute to the DC and CBC studies.

Master Servicing Plan

The City is currently working on a Water, Sanitary and Stormwater Servicing Study, which will support long-term growth, guide service level improvements, and minimize environmental impacts.

Transportation Master Plan

The City is currently working on an update to its Transportation Master Plan, which will help support long-term growth as study transportation and traffic needs for our growing City.

Secondary Plans

The City and the Niagara Region have completed several studies to inform growth at the Regional and City levels up to 2051. The findings have pointed to the need for the City to accommodate a significant amount of new population and job growth over the next 30 years. The City is currently working on several Secondary Plans, which will further support future development in the City. The City is expected to grow to an estimated population of 141,650 with 58,110 jobs by 2051.

Have Your Say!

Your input on the proposed community benefit charges is welcome and encouraged.

Your options to participate/inquire include:

  • Write to the Senior Manager of Capital Accounting, James Dowling, if you have comments. Address mail to City Hall, 4310 Queen Street, Niagara Falls, Ontario, L2E 6X5.
  • Submit a comment in the Online Feedback Form below.
  • Participate in the Public Meeting in April/May 2024. Registration is required through the Clerks Department – details will be provided once the date is confirmed.


Note: If you require accessible versions of documents posted, please send an email to finance@niagarafalls.ca

Thank you!

Online Feedback Form