Recreational docks in the Port of Vancouver
From Burrard Inlet to the Fraser River, recreational docks are a common sight in our waterfront communities. Many of those docks are along the hundreds of kilometres of shoreline that make up the Port of Vancouver within the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority’s jurisdiction, and therefore require a project permit and a dock licence from the port authority.
By our definition, a recreational dock is a structure for mooring boats located immediately in front of an existing residential property. When an upland property owner wants to build a new recreational dock within our jurisdiction—be it single-owner or shared—we, as the Canada port authority responsible for the stewardship of port lands and waters, work with them to assess their proposal and any potential impacts to the environment. Should the project be approved, the property owner must demonstrate their ability to mitigate any issues before a dock can be built.
Recreational docks are for non-commercial, private use. Before a recreational dock is built within the port authority’s jurisdiction, the upland owner is required to go through our Project and Environment Review (PER) process for approval, and receive a licence for non-exclusive use.
New recreational dock applications are being accepted with new guidelines within Burrard Inlet
New recreational dock applications in Burrard Inlet (including Indian Arm and Port Moody Arm) are being accepted. With this update come new guidelines, which provide design consistency and alignment with our land use plan and our Project and Environmental Review process. A new licence and fee structure are also now in place.
Recently, the port authority developed new guidelines for Project Environmental Review (PER) permit applications for new recreational dock installation and upgrades or maintenance and repair to existing recreational docks in the Burrard Inlet.
We have decided to slow our reviews to allow for more consultation, which may result in changes to restrictions and/or mitigation measures for recreational docks. We will continue to work with applicants and update them on the status of their applications.
We are still accepting permit applications for new and upgraded recreational docks, but there will be a processing delay.
This delay does not apply to existing recreational dock owners in good standing who are applying for a renewed licence or a permit to perform necessary maintenance.
Find out more about the new guidelines, licence and fees, and how these new guidelines impact you below.
Prior to the launch of the new guidelines an information session was held on May 28, 2020 for recreational dock owners and interested parties. A summary of the information session can be found here.