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Building Your Own Garage or Garden Shed

Calgary Single Garage

A Building Permit is required for all residential garages and all yard sheds including garden sheds over 10 square metres in area. This information covers requirements for garages and or sheds that are not attached to a house.

Do I need A Building Permit
  • A Building Permit is required for all detached residential garages and carports or garden sheds over 10 square metres in area.
  • Before applying for a Building Permit, it may be necessary to obtain a Development Permit.
  • You'll also need permites for Electrical, Plumbing, Gas, HVAC (Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning).
  • For more information on Development Permit requirements, call the City of Calgary at 403-268-5311.
  • It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that the work being carried out does not contravene the requirements of restrictive covenants, caveats or any other restrictions registered against the property.
Where Do I Apply?
  • Applications are accepted in person only. The Development and Building Approvals customer service counter is located on the third floor of the Calgary Municipal Building, 800 Macleod Tr. SE.
  • Two copies of a Site Plan for the property. Note: It may be necessary to submit two copies of a Real Property Report, prepared by an Alberta Land Surveyor.
  • Two sets of Building Plans.
  • The names of any contractors who will be working on your project. Note: Contractors are required to hold a valid City of Calgary business licence. It is recommended that you call 3-1-1 before you hire a contractor to confirm their licence status.
  • Fees - Application fees vary. For more information call the City of Calgary at 403-268-5311.
Calgary Garage Site Plan
What is a Site Plan?

A Site Plan is a “bird’s-eye view” drawing of your property that clearly shows the layout and dimensions of:

  • The lot and all existing and proposed buildings and structures, including cantilevers.
  • All abutting streets, avenues, lanes and adjoining properties.
  • Easements and Utility Rights-of-Way.
  • You may prepare your own Site Plan, drawn to a scale of not less than 1”=20’ or 1:200 in metric, although a recent survey certificate is preferred. Your drawings must be fully dimensioned and will be accepted in metric or imperial, but not a combination of both.
  • The following information must be clearly labeled on your drawings:

  • North arrow.
  • The street address.
  • The site’s legal description.
What are Building Plans?

Building Plans are working drawings of proposed construction that generally include the following perspectives:

  • Floor Plans – show the layout, dimensions and use of rooms and spaces; the size of all structural members, such as beams and columns; the size of windows and doors; the provisions made for heating and ventilation; the location and rating of fire separations; and the location of smoke alarms.
  • Cross-Sections – show ceiling heights of rooms and spaces; the construction of walls, including damp- proofing; the structural details; fire separations; and sound separation.
  • Elevations – show the front, sides and rear of a building in relation to the exterior ground surface (grade).
  • You may prepare your own Site Plan, drawn to a scale of not less than 1”=20’ or 1:200 in metric, although a recent survey certificate is preferred. Your drawings must be fully dimensioned and will be accepted in metric or imperial, but not a combination of both.
  • Plans must be drawn to scale, preferably 1⁄4”=1’ or 1:50 in metric (accepted minimum scale is 3/16”=1’), and will be accepted in metric or imperial, but not a combination of both.

Calgary Garage Site Plan
Why am I required to submit plans?

Plans are examined as part of the approval process to ensure the proposed construction complies with the rules outlined in The City of Calgary Land Use Bylaw and with the safety standards specified in the Alberta Building Code.

What are the rules and safety standards for detached garages and carports?

Some of the bylaw, code requirements and considerations for detached garages and carports are:

  • In most communities, the maximum lot coverage for all buildings on the property cannot exceed 45.0 per cent. The maximum area covered by accessory buildings cannot exceed 75 m2 or the building coverage of the main residential building, whichever is the lesser. To determine the maximum coverage allowed in your area, please contact Development and Building Approvals at 403-268-5311.
  • The maximum height of a detached garage or carport is 4.6 m above grade, measured from the finished floor of the building.
  • The maximum eave line height of a detached garage or carport is 3.0 m, measured from the finished floor of the building.
  • The building eave can be no closer than 0.45 m to a property line.
  • A detached garage or carport must have a minimum of 1.0 m of separation from a house.
  • A deck is not permitted to be constructed on the roof of a detached garage or carport.
  • A detached garage or carport cannot be located in a front yard.
  • A detached garage can have only one storey (except in the case of a secondary suite).
  • A detached garage must be 0.6 m from all property lines unless:
  • The garage has vehicle access off of a street; then, a 6.0 m driveway length with a minimum 3.0 m width is required, measured from the back of the public sidewalk or, where there is no public sidewalk, measured from the curb.
  • The garage is on a corner lot; then, 1.2 m is required or, if there is no lane, 3.0 m is required from the street side property line.
  • The exterior of the garage wall is constructed of maintenance-free materials; and the wall is fire rated and equipped with downspouts and eaves troughs that direct water run-off onto the same lot then, a required 0.6 m side yard can be reduced to 0.0 m.
  • A carport typically consists of a roof supported by columns with completely open sides except where it is attached to the main building. If some of the sides of the carport (excluding those common with the main building) are partially or wholly covered (e.g. if there are short walls on these sides), the carport must be treated as a garage for the purpose of determining the percentage of unprotected openings (e.g. windows) allowed and/or the fire resistance rating of the wall.
  • Foundation support (e.g. a 200 mm diameter concrete pier that extends 1.2 m below grade) must be provided under carport columns.
  • Two-storey garages and garages constructed with masonry veneer or concrete must have foundation walls and footings 1.2 m (minimum) below grade around the perimeter, OR the design of the foundation must be signed and sealed by an engineer licensed to practise in the province of Alberta. It is recommended that garages over 55 m2 (approximately 592 ft2) in building area meet these same requirements.
  • If your lane is not paved it is recommended that a lane grade be established so that your garage or carport floor will be at the correct elevation in relation to the lane. There is a fee for this service. Please contact Development Site Servicing at 403-268-5795.
  • Provincial regulations prohibit the construction of a garage over a gas line. If you are faced with this problem, you can either move the garage at least 30 cm (1 ft) from the gas line or have the service line relocated. For more information, contact your gas service provider.
  • Before you dig, reduce the risk of personal injury and property damage by contacting Alberta One- Call at 1-800-242-3447 to request to have the location of your utilities marked.

Please note: The above is not a complete list of requirements. For more detail on the specific rules applicable to your property, please contact the City of Calgary Development and Building Approvals at 403-268-5311.

For more information and any changes to the Gargae and Sheds code contact the City of Calgary at 403-268-5311.

City of Calgary Gargages and Sheds PDF

Calgary Garages and Garden Sheds content provided by The City of Calgary.