Municipally owned infrastructure located on private property is usually protected by an easement in favour of the City. If you have a question pertaining to such infrastructure or easement on your property please contact Geomatics. Although the City maintains records of its own infrastructure, it does not have records for "private" utilities such as Bell Canada, Union Gas or London Hydro. If you have questions about a private utility you will need to contact the utility owner for information.
Please refer to the following FAQ's for information pertaining to easements, then contact Geomatics if you have any additional questions pertaining to municipal easements.
Easements are a legal interest in land that provide limited rights to the beneficiary over another property owners lands for specific purposes. The City relies on easements to both protect municipal infrastructure located on private property, and to ensure it has the necessary rights to access and make repairs to its infrastructure as necessary.
Most easements are formalized by an Easement Agreement which is a legal agreement executed by both the landowner and the City that set out the easement terms, rights and obligations for both parties and is registered on the title of the property it affects. Easement agreements "run with the land" and are binding on all subsequent property owners.
In cases where there is no registered Easement Agreement, the City relies on provisions in the Municipal Act that permit the City to access and maintain municipal infrastructure that is located on private property.
Property owners are responsible for ensuring they do nothing on their property that would be contrary to the terms of an Easement Agreement or would interfere with municipal infrastructure that is protected under the Municipal Act.
All easement agreements are registered on title and a title search at the Land Registry Office will reveal any registered easements that affect your property.
Customer Service (519-661-4570) can tell you if there's an unregistered easement on your property.
Registered Easement Agreements will list property restrictions. Most agreements contain a "no-build" clause which prohibits the property owner from erecting a "building or other structure" within the easement which is intended to ensure the City has free and clear access. Generally, the City has no concerns about erecting fences or placing movable sheds with no foundations on the easement. Limited landscaping is also permitted, with the understanding that the City is not responsible for replacing any vegetation that may be lost should the City require access.
Unregistered easements have no formal agreement associated with them but all municipal infrastructure is protected under provisions of the Municipal Act and the property owner is responsible for ensuring any such infrastructure is not damaged or affected in any way.
Please contact Geomatics if you have any questions about how a municipal easement, registered or otherwise, affects your property and what options you have.
Depending on the circumstances, the City may consider entering into an encroachment agreement with the property owner. For more information please refer to Easement Encroachment Agreements.
No, the City will not release its rights to any portion of an easement unless it is being abandoned entirely.
The following are the standard easement documents currently used by the City:
Combined Services Easement
Temporary Roadway Easement
To have buried utilities and City services located call Ontario One Call at 1-800-400-2255 at least one week prior to excavating. There is no charge for this service.