Well, a ‘New Era’, has begun on Aylen Lake. An Era, where: Some R & R, at the cottage. Could now stand for: Some Rules ‘n’ Regulations, at the cottage. Listed below; Aylen Lake – Services.com has compiled a sampling of the new bylaws & policies, that now apply to the lakeside properties on ‘The Lake’ , Aylen lake, Ontario.

As an Aylen Lakers’ reference; Here is just some of the new ‘Lakeside’ regulations: as of January 5th/2017, & the passing of the Townships’ Zoning Bylaw.

#1) Shipping/Storage Containers use:  These are no longer allowed for the lakefront properties!, but are OK, elsewhere in the community?(ZB/reg#4.31) Not zoned for lakeside use? Why?, I dunno . After all, they are a Recycled item, fireproof, secure, and used all over the world for a variety of uses. Except.. ‘Lakeside’, in the Township of South Algonquin. As far as ‘Planning’ goes… Why not allow them, but have them to be located back in the property/lot, & perhaps painted, or framed-in, with a nice wooden fence. Where the materials can showcase the local industry, & help support the local economy, etc.. Otherwise, because of their ‘mobility'(within 48hrs.), are they even able to regulate them?

#2) Docks:  Dock’s on the lake, are now regulated to a length of 15m. Also, there are varying rules for configurations, surface areas’, and what can be put on them? (ZB/reg# Well, my comment regarding these, would be; ‘Every situation’ along our shorelines, is different. The underwater topography, and shore’s edge, should dictate Dock requirements, not regulation.  In my ‘Planning’ opinion; the Township should have been addressing the Environmental issue here. Perhaps, mandating the use of Pole docks, or Floaters, and not allowing the shoreline built Crib-docks!, etc… Also, the Waterways & Shorelines, are under federal and provincial juristriction, aren’t they?. Why complicate, duplicate, or ‘Muddy the Waters’, so to speak.

#3) Waterfront Accessory Structures: All lakeside ‘Decks’ are regulated to 12 square metres. (approx. 10′ x 14′) Whoa! That’s not very big? But, a Gazebo is ‘ok’ up to 24 square metres? What the…?  Check it out;(ZB/reg#4.1.8. c) Pumphouses, are also mentioned in this section.  In my opinion; the ‘Deck’ reg. is ‘Ridiculous’.  Please, leave this to the area’s Landscape, the Designer, & the Building Code/Official, to decide.   For reference; I checked one of my ‘Deck Design’ manuals, and it only showed two designs smaller than 10′ x 14′ in the entire book. I’ve sold ‘Dock-Decks’ larger than this.

I wonder if the Towns’ council & planning staff, are aware of what’s available, on the market today? How about ‘Planning’ to attend a Cottage Show, Sportsman Show, or Boat Show! Maybe, some consulting with FOCA, & local Cottage Associations’, or just watch some Cottage Life TV, before passing the Bylaw?

#4) In-Water Boathouses: I’m not sure why the township would want to even try and regulate these.  Again, My understanding was that; ‘In-water’ is the responsibility of Oceans & Fisheries Canada, and the ‘Shoreline’ was the responsibility of MNR provincially.  Also, there are already Ont. Supreme court decisions pending on ‘In-water’ Boathouses.  So why even address them. I personally, didn’t think they were even allowed anymore. (per The Muskoka factor) Anyways, its’ their decision, they allow them, but with certain restrictions listed in ;(ZB/reg#

#5) SR vs LSR designation: On Aylen lake, the properties are designated as shoreline residential(SR), or limited-service shoreline residential(LSR). Why, is there a difference?   We all receive the ‘same’ Services? Even, with the Road access lots; the individual driveways’ or secondary lanes are not the township$’ responsibility. These, are maintained privately. Plus, a lot of boat access cottagers’ share’n’park down these roads as well. (w/o  mentioning; the Aylen ‘Parking Lot” situation) In my opinion: I think every property on Aylen Lake, should be designated as ‘Limited-Service Shoreline Residential’ (ZB/reg.#5.2)

#6) Setbacks from a Waterbody: All Buildings, & Structures shall be setback at least 20m from the high-water mark. Septic systems too!, (ZB/reg.#4.28-29) You must check with the local authorities, anyways. Permits are required, for any Septic works. The designers/installers, samples, & inspectors will determine the requirements. Not many I know, would want to DIY their own septic system project.

#7) Building Heights: The definition of ‘Building Height” is the determining factor here. Why not use the same ‘definition’ listed, from the Ontario Building Code? Designing buildings’, with higher roof pitch, affects the snow-load criteria, and living here year round, I can attest to the amount of snow we receive. Plus, it’s just my opinion, but from a ‘Design’/appearance perspective; the steeper roof designs’, suit the cottage/chalet style, of Waterfront living and the area.

The SR & LSR Building heights are shown here:

  • Main Residence – 10m. (SR/LSR)
  • Accessory Buildings & Structures – 4.5m.
  • In-Water Boathouses – (3.5 – 3.7m.)
  • Guest Cabins – 4.5m.

#8) ‘Non-Comforming’ Uses: Finally, the ‘Thank Goodness’ Clause!   The new policies and bylaws are the result of the Township passing it’s Zoning Bylaw, and thus; The implementation of the policies of the Official Plan , on Jan. 5th,2017. As of that date, all existing properties will be grandfathered forward from their present state. Any new real estate projects/ideas, or any ‘additional’ property developments to existing properties, will be subject to the New rules as they apply. (ZB/reg.#4.16)

Well,  so much for Creative design, & Customization. ‘Building Ideas for Lakeside Living’ on Aylen lake, just got a whole lot more ‘Boring!’

Ya know, I thought Planning, was required to Develop an Area. To perhaps, do it Sustainably, with an Environmental conscience. Combining, today’s new Technologies, with Experience, & lesson’s learned from our lakefront history. Not, set the  Lake area, back another couple decades!

But that’s; Just my opinion! Keeping you informed, from beautiful Aylen Lake!

Thank you for your interest. Please, ‘Like’ us on the Facebook, if you found this article informative for the Aylen lake ‘Community’.

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Coming soon: De-Amalgamation?

De or Stay? How would you vote? Is it possible?,…  Curious, Aylen laker’ minds, want to know more! Any readers’ out there, that can help with additional info on this subject? Would be welcomed, & appreciated? Thank you.

Please contact us:

Thanx, Have a great day! at ‘The Lake’, soon!





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