Coach Houses

Secondary Dwelling units in accessory structures, termed Coach Houses in the City of Ottawa, were approved by Council on October 26, 2016.

A Coach House means: A separate dwelling unit that is subsidiary to and located on the same lot as an associated principal dwelling unit, but is contained in its own building that may also contain uses accessory to the principal dwelling. These new housing units are permitted in Ottawa's urban, suburban and rural areas subject to Section 3.1 of the Official Plan and Section 142 of the Zoning By-law. 

The City has created a document, titled: How to Plan Your Coach House in Ottawa . This document helps to understand the process and costs associated with building a coach house. This guide also provides answers to many questions associated with constructing a coach house.

Coach Houses: Proposed Zoning By-law Amendments


The current requirement for a coach house application on a property located in a rural village is that the property has to be 0.8 ha or greater in size and be subject to rural Site Plan Control.   The purpose of rural Site Plan Control is to confirm that onsite water quality and quantity are sufficient for the primary home and the coach house. Where municipal water is provided, this step is not required.  The proposed amendment would eliminate the rural Site Plan requirement for rural lots that have municipal water service. 


Further, the proposal clarifies that a coach house in the rural area on lots that are 0.8 hectares or larger may be located anywhere on the lot, provided the unit meets minimum setbacks, and not be restricted to the rear yard.  This addresses the reality that larger rural lots are configured differently than smaller urban lots and a coach house could exist in a variety of spots. In most circumstances, the location of the new coach house will be based on the existing and proposed locations of the private services. Allowing the coach house to locate anywhere on a rural lot that is 0.8 hectares or larger addresses these varying needs.


More detailed information on this proposal is available at


Please send comment prior to March 16, 2017 to Emily Davies, MES-Plan, MCIP RPP at 613.580.2424 ext./poste 23463, or e-mail to .