Planning, Development and Engineering

Planning, Development and Engineering

The Department of Planning, Development and Engineering is responsible for overall land use planning, urban design, development activity and the construction and maintenance of City infrastructure and the built environment in the City of St. John’s. The primary goal of the department is to build an increasingly sustainable community over time, with an enhanced quality of life, consistent with the vision and core strategies of the City’s Strategic Plan and the needs of its residents and visitors.

Through community engagement and consultation, the Department of Planning, Development and Engineering seeks to understand the values of the community and industry, and reflect those values through the implementation of responsive development policies, programs, by-laws and standards.

The mandate of the department includes primary responsibilities for planning, future growth, land use and zoning policy, development review, inspection services, protection and expansion of existing infrastructure and building stock, ensuring affordable housing opportunities, heritage protection, and by-law enforcement. The department works with community, business, and regional partners to foster mutually supportive relationships and sustainable development throughout the City and region.

The Department of Planning, Development and Engineering has three primary divisions which work together to achieve the City's planning and development goals:

Planning, Development and Engineering Organizational Chart

Hours of operation are Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
The Department of Planning, Development and Engineering head office is located on the third floor of the City Hall Annex.

Contact us at:
Planning, Development and Engineering – City of St. John’s
P.O. Box 908, St. John’s, NL  A1C 5M2

Phone Numbers:
Engineering Design and Construction: (709) 576-6192
Inspection Services: (709) 576-8565
Planning and Development: (709) 576-8220


Planning and Development
The Planning and Development Division develops short and long range plans for the sustainable growth of the City through the use of zoning principals which benefit the community, protect the integrity of neighbourhoods, promote commercial and industrial development which support the economy, and provide a wide variety of amenities to support a healthy, active lifestyle across the demographic spectrum. The division is responsible for the administration of the St. John’s Municipal Plan, as well as the interpretation and enforcement of the St. John’s Development Regulations that flow from the Municipal Plan. Staff provide advice and planning support to committees of Council, other City staff and the general public.

The Planning and Development Division is also responsible for the protection of the City’s built heritage through the promotion of heritage values, encouragement of planned urban design through consultation with owners and developers and enforcement of heritage by-laws and policies.

Forming part of the Planning and Development process the City promotes and enables the production and maintenance of affordable housing. In addition to direct delivery of affordable housing through the City’s Community Services branch, the Planning and Development Division ensures affordable housing opportunities exist through enabling zoning legislation and through the support of Council through research on current and future trends in housing sustainability.

Inspection Services
The Inspection Services Division is responsible for the processing of applications for permits with respect to all components of construction/renovation/occupancy changes for new and existing commercial and residential properties. Through this permitting and inspection process, properties are constructed and maintained to meet National Building, Electrical, Plumbing, Fire and Life Safety Code Standards. The division is also responsible for ensuring the safe use of properties and the sustainability of the built environment through the enforcement of maintenance standards and by-laws. This is achieved through the timely response to constituent/Council concerns of possible by-law infractions by issuing notices, tickets and legal action for non-compliance, and for maintaining a safe, clean and viable city.

Engineering Design and Construction Management
The Engineering Design and Construction Management Division provides long-term planning and engineering design and review of the City’s infrastructure and provides technical advice and direction to Council, its committees and other departments. The division issues, reviews and administers construction contracts; conducts inspection of contracted work during construction; operates the soils and asphalt lab; conducts field evaluations, ranking and estimating for street rehabilitation; and compiles design data and estimates for capital projects. The division provides professional and technical engineering services relating to both traffic operations and transportation planning within the City of St. John’s; maintains City’s survey control monument network; provides basic survey data-gathering record maintenance and retrieval services, legal plans and descriptions for property acquisitions, easements, rights-of-way and disposal; conducts title searches, property ownership/boundary determinations; damage claim investigations; pre-design or investigative construction surveys; as-built data gathering; and civic numbering and new street listing.