Wharves, piers, docks, boathouses and/or small moorings have the potential to impact important aquatic habitat. These structures can not only cover spawning habitat, but the construction can also result in the removal of rocks and logs that provide shelter, change shoreline features which change sediment and erosional processes, and can result in the introduction of unwanted materials, if unwanted building materials are used. For these reasons the construction of docks and moorings have a rigorous permitting process to ensure best management practices are followed and that developments proceed with care.
Dock Application Process
A permit is required for new construction, as well as to repair or alter an existing structure, and is obtained through a Private Moorage Application. The application package is designed to review all aspects of the project, and will include:
- Site Plans & Photographs
- Details on Dock construction
- Proof of adjoining land ownership
- Record of any First Nations consultations
- Management Plan or EIA
The largest component of the permitting process is the submission of an environmental management plan. This management plan should be created by a qualified environmental professional (QEP), and will contain information on the following:
- Dock Specifications & Access
- Biophysical Characteristics
- Maps showing the location of structures and features
- Construction Schedule
- Identification of Potential Environmental Impacts
- Best Management Practices
- Environmental Monitoring Requirements
If your development is proposed within a sensitive area such as kokanee spawning or western ridged mussel habitat, you may require an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) to review and ensure the proper mitigation is incorporated.
For all works in and about a stream or watercourse, an approval is also required under the Water Act known as a “Section-11”, and should be applied for separately after the dock application has been accepted.