Renovations and Alterations

Your project and its success are important to you! This information is for interior/exterior renovations or alterations, tenant improvements, change of use or occupancy to a commercial or industrial building.

Do I need permits?

A Development Permit is required for:

  • Changes to the exterior and/or doors and windows 
  • First tenant in a new building location or change to the business activity in a location, such as from retail to restaurant. Please continue to our Change of Use information if this is what you need.

A building permit is required for:

  • Changes to exterior doors and windows 
  • Changes to interior and exterior walls 
  • Changes to heating and ventilation
  • When upgrading or installing new equipment (for example, a vehicle-detailing business expanding to include repair; forklift use and its charging/fuelling in a warehouse may require additional ventilation; adding or modifying commercial cooking equipment)
  • When there is no construction, but the business is the first tenant in a new building location or change to the business activity in a location, such as from retail to restaurant. Please continue to the Change of Use information if this is what you need.

Depending on the extent of the work, you may also require electrical, gas, heating, and plumbing permits.

Explanation of Permits

Learn about the different criteria that we review before issuing a Development Permit and a Building Permit.

Development Permit

A Development Permit is required to ensure that a business can operate in the proposed space under the district/zoning. Things like parking, floor area, compatibility of adjacent uses, or if there are any restrictions on the property are items included in the application review. If exterior renovations are proposed, the development permit ensures the exterior complies with any required architectural details and is compatible with the streetscape.

How long does it take to process?

Note: During building season (April 1 - October 31), processing times may take longer, due to the number of applications that are submitted during this time.

In most cases, it will take 5-7 business days for review and decision. 

Also important to note, if your project requires a variance to regulations, or is a discretionary use in the Land Use Bylaw, there is a 21-day appeal period after the review and circulation time, before the permit can be issued, if approved.

What are the fees?

Please refer to 'Schedule A' of the Development Permit Fee Bylaw to find the fees associated with the Development Permit.

Building Permit

A Building Permit is required to review the safety components of an existing commercial space, and ensure it meets the requirements for your specific improvements and business. Ultimately, the goal is to make sure the space is safe for you, your staff and future customers.

How long does it take to process?

Note: During building season (April 1 - October 31), processing times may take longer, due to the number of applications that are submitted during this time.

In most cases, it will take 14-21 business days to review and issue. The Building Permit cannot be issued until the Development Permit has been issued. 

What are the fees?

Please refer to 'Schedule A' of the Safety Codes Permit Bylaw 3551/2015 (pdf) to find the associated fees.

Permit Application Process

Check out what is included with each step of the process, from preparing your documents to beginning construction.

Who can apply?

An owner or licensed contractor can submit permit applications. If you are not the owner of the property, you will need to include a Letter of Authorization (pdf) with the application package.

If you are a contractor requiring a City of Red Deer Business Licence, please visit our Licensing page before submitting your permit application.

Step 1: Prepare your documents

Before submitting your permit applications, you need to prepare all the plan documents and forms that are required for your submission. Review the respective requirements list and forms for each permit.

User Guides

These guides will help you prepare and save your required plan documents to submit during your application process.

Development Permit

Building Permit

Step 2: Submit your applications

How do I apply?

Building Permits and Development Permits

Building Permits and Development Permits can be submitted online using MyPermits. Please ensure you have all the documents and drawings you need for your project by following the requirement list and plan submission standards documents from Step 1: Prepare your documents. You will be required to upload these files to ProjectDox to complete your application. If the application is incomplete, the permit will be returned to you to submit the missing items.

  1. Visit MyPermits and complete a Building Permit application.
  2. You will receive an email to the address you specified as the applicant inviting you to access your project in ProjectDox for your permit application.
  3. Log in to ProjectDox with an existing account or with your temporary password provided in the email.
  4. Upload the plan documents you prepared for your application from the Upload & Submit task on your dashboard.

For assistance, refer to our ProjectDox Applicant Guide (pdf).

link to the MyPermits site


Step 3: Processing your applications

Once we receive your complete permit applications, the Development Officer and the Building Safety Codes Officer will conduct a review of the permits, ensuring the proposed development complies with the Land Use Bylaw and the Safety Codes Act, respectively.

You will receive email notifications throughout the application process, including:

  • If we need more information;
  • When payment is required;
  • When the permit is issued.

Good to know info...

Did you know that some email servers will block City of Red Deer emails? These emails will often end up in your junk/spam mail folder! Please add as an allowable sender to make sure you are receiving our emails.

Step 4: Sub-trades permits

You will need additional permits to put in lights and outlets, heat and plumbing.

  • Electrical - for wiring outlets and lights or sub-panel
  • Heating - for heating devices, such as a wood stove (solid fuel appliance)
  • Gas - for gas appliances, such as a unit heater, radiant heater, furnace or a boiler
  • Plumbing - for floor drains, sinks, showers, wash stations, etc.

Who can apply?


The City of Red Deer allows owners to obtain permits; however, if you have no previous knowledge or experience with these installations, you should engage the services of a licensed contractor to apply for the required permits and complete the work.

There are a few exceptions:

  • Gas permits may only be obtained by a licensed gasfitter
  • Heating permits may only be obtained by a licensed heating contractor
  • Owners cannot obtain an Electrical Permit for the following work:
    • hot tubs or pools
    • main service or panel changes
    • duplex, townhouse or any unit with a shared wall
    • secondary suites
    • solar panels
    • rental properties
    • electrical car charging stations.


Contractors applying for permits require a valid City of Red Deer Business Licence. Please visit our Licensing page should you require a new or renewed licence prior to applying for your permit.

How do I apply?

Owners and contractors can apply online using MyPermits, or submit an application form via email to

link to the MyPermits site
Step 5: Site inspections

What inspections will I need?

The required inspections will be determined when the Safety Codes Officer reviews your application, and will be listed on the Safety Codes Building Permit when it is approved and issued.

If you've obtained any sub-trade permits, you may need two inspections during the course of the respective permit. 

  1. A rough-in inspection before concealing any work
  2. A final inspection once everything is complete

If you obtain multiple sub-trades permits, these inspections will apply to each permit type.

When can I schedule an inspection?

Once your Safety Codes Building Permit has been approved and issued, you will receive an email with instructions of how to schedule an inspection.

How do I know the outcome of my inspection(s)?

You will receive an email notification informing you of the outcome of each inspection.