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Development Charges

A growing community needs money to pay for the costs of growth. Development charges help to finance growth infrastructure in Essex. Each new house, commercial structure and manufacturing plant requires infrastructure and services (like sewer pipes, storm water relief, fire protection, and road improvements) in order to function efficiently and effectively. Development charges are fees that are paid by new development to fund new infrastructure and services.

Are development charges included with property taxes or water and wastewater rates?

No. Development charges are different than property taxes and water and wastewater rates. Development charges represent a source of funding for the design and construction of new municipal infrastructure required to support new developments. Only new construction or additions to existing buildings are required to pay development charge fees.

Property taxes, water rates and wastewater rates are collected and used to pay for the everyday costs of running and maintaining the community. All of Essex's property owners are responsible for these ongoing costs.

Development Charges Background Study

At least every five years, the municipality conducts a development charges background study to forecast the community's future residential and non-residential growth to determine infrastructure needs and costs. This information is used to calculate the amount of money that new development needs to pay in order to cover new infrastructure and services. The most recent background study was performed in 2014 and new charges were adopted in August 2014, with charges adjusted annually thereafter by the Construction Price Index.

Development charges are due when a building permit is issued. The Town's 2019 development charges vary by ward as set out in the table below:

Type of Development Ward 1 Ward 2 Ward 3 Ward 4*
  • Single and Semi-Detached Dwelling
$11,329.74 $8,298.99 $9,468.15 $10,287.32*
  • Apartments - 2 Bedroom and Up
$6,501.33 $4,798.14 $5,454.59 $5,915.37*
  • Apartments - Bachelor and 1 Bedroom
$4,970.39 $3,668.02 $4,169.82 $4,521.19*
  • Multiple Units
$7,736.16 $5,708.96 $6,491.65 $7,038.69*
per square foot of gross floor area)
$4.29 $2.03 $3.30 $3.60

Solar Farms
(per square foot)

$1.65 $1.65 $1.65 $1.65

Wind Turbines and Telecommunication Towers
(per square foot)

$2,740.32 $2,740.32 $2,740.32


* Effective January 1, 2018, Essex Council reduced residential development charges by 100 percent for Ward 4 (Harrow). This reduction to the above listed charges remains in effect until August 25, 2019.