At a glance (2 minute read)

  • Vancouver introduces eComply, an innovative visualization tool for building permit applications, streamlining the process and ensuring compliance with regulations.
  • The city aims to expedite housing construction with the 3-3-3-1 campaign commitment, targeting specific permit approval timelines for different types of projects.
  • The city has made progress in digitization, reduction of review times, customer service expansion, and exploring new housing options, enhancing the efficiency and accessibility of Vancouver's development permits process.

In 2024, anyone applying for a building permit in Vancouver will be able to use eComply, an innovative visualization tool that lets applicants upload building plans, check against regulations, and receive comprehensive compliance reports.

“The introduction of eComply is a game-changer in getting more housing built faster," said Vancouver Mayor Ken Sim.

eComply is the first program of its kind in Canada.

Vancouver council also approved a motion from Mayor Sim, seconded by Councillor Sarah Kirby-Yung, to formally adopt the 3-3-3-1 campaign commitment as official city policy.

3-3-3-1 targets permit approval timelines of three days for renovations, three weeks for single family homes, three months for low and midrise projects, and one year for major projects. 

Vancouver goes digital, speeds up permitting to get housing built faster

  • Full digitization of application process through e-Plan platform.
  • Development underway of permitting automation systems (eComply).
  • Approximately half of engineering services and DBL permit conditions have been eliminated or simplified, leading to a 30% reduction in review times.
  • Improved applicant information access by significantly expanding customer service capacity for city’s development, buildings, and licensing department and enabling prospective applications to seek staff advice before applying.
  • Launch of a public engagement process for missing middle housing, the exploration of allowing up to six units on a significantly larger number of residential lots.
  • Since December 2022, average plan review times for low-density projects have seen an 80% reduction, going to just 18 days from 12 weeks.
  • Creation of a fast track “Direct to Inspections” permit for renovations that can be issued in less than one week.
  • The Digital Transformation Program which releases new digital features to improve permit and licensing every 8-12 weeks.
  • Planned implementation of risk-based reviews to reduce wait times on all forms of housing applications.

If you have questions about Vancouver’s development permits process, please contact Harriet Permut, director of government relations at