A Cataraqui Conservation Permit is required for any marine development (e.g. docks, boathouses, boat ports, marine railways, etc.) and alterations to shorelines.

What permits are required to build a dock?

A Cataraqui Conservation Permit IS NOT required if:

  • the dock is removable (includes, but is not limited to designs such as floating docks with an anchor), cantilevered docks, and aluminum-framed docks with support rails/posts that sit on the bottom.
  • Where a wetland is present, further conditions must be met to determine whether approvals are required. It is recommended you fill out the Permit Inquiry Form or contact staff when a dock proposal is in or near a wetland boundary to determine approval status.

illustrations of docks that may not require a permit

A Permit MAY be required in relation to a removable dock it:

  • The dock is attached to the lake or water channel bottom or the shore by a new support system (e.g. concrete pad) or fill is placed or removed.
  • Note: if a permit is needed, it is for the support system or fill, not the removable dock itself.

A Permit IS required if:

  • A new dock design is permanent (e.g. post pile-supported, crib docks).
  • An existing permanent dock is being replaced or significantly repaired (e.g. replacement of framing/foundation, full rebuild).
  • A crib structure is being decommissioned and crib material is being removed from the site.

illustration of docks that require a permit

What Permits are required for other shoreline work or in-water work?

(removing aquatic vegetation, swimming areas, building boat ramps, wharfs or boathouses, retaining walls, erosion work)

You will likely require a Cataraqui Conservation permit for marine development or alteration to a shoreline. You may also require approvals from:

  • The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry
  • Department of Fisheries and Oceans
  • For works occurring below the controlled high-water level along the Rideau Canal waterway system, approval will be required by Parks Canada. Cataraqui Conservation setbacks from waterbodies still apply for work occurring above the controlled high-water level along the Rideau Canal.
  • Local municipality (planning compliance, building permits etc.)

Shoreline erosion protection measures: cross-section examples

Natural shorelines have many benefits including protection of water quality, providing terrestrial and aquatic habitat, and acts as a natural form of erosion protection. Below are varying degrees of hardened shoreline examples, however natural elements and bio-engineered solutions should be first considered when stabilizing soils for shoreline protection. Click the image below for a full size view or printable PDF version.

Illustration of shoreline erosion protection measures.

Interested in doing more to protect your shoreline and lake? Download a copy of our Lake Protection Workbook. It was created as a self-assessment tool that acts as an excellent educational resource; helps property owners living along a lake shoreline understand how their actions might be affecting their lake and provides helpful tips on how to improve the natural environment along their shoreline.