SSMUH Implementation - Heritage Hills Lakeshore Highlands Vintage Views


On August 12, 2021, the provincial Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy (“Ministry”) issued Pollution Prevention Order (PPO) No. 110871 to “Vintage Views”, which is a company registered in British Columbia (B.C.) that owns and operates a wastewater collection and treatment system (“System”) for a residential housing development at Heritage Hills, near Okanagan Falls, B.C.

The PPO was issued due to the ongoing non-compliance with previous Provincial Abatement Orders (PAOs) which had required repair of the System, sampling and reporting.

Importantly, PPO No. 110871 prohibits the connection of new units to the System and, as a result, the Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen (“Regional District”) is not issuing building permits for new development within the Vintage Views development that proposes to connect to the System until the PPO is cancelled.

The PPO also applies to subdivision proposals seeking to create new parcels in the Vintage Views development that would connect to the System and it is the Regional District’s understanding that the Provincial Approving Officer is aware of the current Order.



HeritageHills RFP Context Map

The development of the Vintage Views area dates to the mid-1970s and a proposed 162-lot subdivision that would occur over four phases at a density not exceeding one parcel per 0.4 ha (1 acre) with a significant amount of land set aside as green space.

Following the completion of Phase 1 (Lakeshore Highlands), the developer approached the Regional District in order to allow for greater density on the basis that “the cost of providing water services to the subdivided lots and the remaining property …” was not economical and “a greater number of lots” would be need to sustain the development.

The remaining phases, comprising the Heritage Hills and Vintage Views neighbourhoods occurred throughout the 1990s and into the 2010s.

In support of the development of the Vintage Views neighbourhood, the current wastewater System was constructed in 2003 and currently services 97 households and 15 vacant lots (a total of 112 connections), however, there is uncertainty about the exact number of properties connected to the system.

Land Use Bylaw Requirements

Under the Regional District’s Okanagan Valley Zoning Bylaw No. 2800, 2022, the Vintage Views neighbourhood is currently zoned Low Density Residential Two (RS2), which allows for “single detached dwellings” as a permitted principal use, “accessory dwelling” and “secondary suite” as permitted accessory uses and a minimum parcel for subdivision of 500 m2.

Importantly, an “accessory dwelling” is only permitted on a parcel less than 1.0 hectare in area when connected to a community sewer system and any new parcel to be created by subdivision that is less than 1.0 ha in area must also be connected to a community sewer system.

There are currently no zoning regulations mandating that a principal dwelling unit (e.g., “single detached dwelling”) or a “secondary suite” be connected to a community sewer system (i.e., servicing by approved septic system is permitted).

NOTE: the Regional District is currently updating the zoning bylaw to ensure compliance with recent changes to the Local Government Act related to Small-Scale Multi-Unit Housing (SSMUH) and the zoning regulations that apply to Vintage Views will change as a result.

Under the Regional District’s Subdivision Servicing Bylaw No. 2000, 2002, “when a subdivision of a parcel is to be undertaken within any service area established by a bylaw of the Regional District for the purpose of providing a sanitary sewage collection and disposal system owned and operated by the Regional District, the resultant parcels shall connect to, and be served by that system.”

At this time, the Vintage Views System remains privately held and is not owned or operated by the Regional District.

NOTE: the Regional District is currently updating the Subdivision Servicing Bylaw and information regarding this project can be found at:

Utilities Acquisition Review

At its meeting of December 15, 2022, the Regional District Board of Directors resolved to “commence the due diligence to evaluate the Vintage Views Development Sewer System and Lakeshore Waterworks Water System” for possible acquisition by the Regional District.

This was in response to a proposal submitted by Vintage Views Developments Ltd. and Lakeshore Waterworks Ltd. to the Regional District on November 15, 2022, in which their respective sewer system and water systems would be taken over by the Regional District.

The evaluation of this proposal is currently being completed in accordance with the Regional District’s “Water and Sewer Utility Acquisition Policy” and is anticipated to be presented at a meeting of the Regional District Board within the first half of 2024.

Frequently Asked Questions

As a result of the PPO, the Regional District has received a number of queries from affected land owners regarding the issuance of building permits (BPs) for new development.  The following are some typical questions:

Q:   Will the Regional District issue a building permit for a new dwelling on a parcel within the area serviced by the Vintage Views System?

A:    Under Part 10 of the Regional District’s Building Bylaw No. 2805, 2018, an application for a building permit in Vintage Views must be accompanied by an approval to connect to a private sewage disposal system. Such an approval can be in the form of the following:

  1. a letter from the owner of a community sewer system serving the lands confirming that:

    i)   the proposed development can be connected to the community sewer system; and

    ii) all fees have been paid for connection(s) to the community sewer system.

  2. where a parcel is to be served by an individual on-site sewage disposal system, written confirmation from the authority having jurisdiction stating that their requirements with regard to onsite sewage disposal have been satisfied.

As the PPO prevents additional connects to the Vintage Views System at this time, the only other option for an affected property would be the installation of a septic system.

Installation of a septic system may, however, be a challenge for numerous parcels in the Vintage Views neighbourhood due to existing site constraints as well as the cost of such a system.  Property owners considering this option should be aware that there may be a requirement to connect any new development to the Vintage Views System once the PPO is cancelled.

NOTE: please see Draft Zoning Amendment Bylaw No. 2800.43 (linked below) regarding proposed changes that will require new dwellings to be connected to a community sewer system.

Q:   Will the Regional District approve the subdivision of a parcel within the area serviced by the Vintage Views System?

A:    While the approving authority for all subdivisions within the Regional District resides with the Provincial Approving Office, which is based out of the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure (MoTI), the Regional District does set minimum servicing standards for new parcels, including the requirement that any new parcel less than 1.0 ha in area, be connected to a community sewer system.

As long as the Vintage Views System remains under a PPO, it would not be possible for a subdivision application involving an affected parcel to meet this servicing requirement, meaning the subdivision could not proceed.

Small-Scale Multi-Unit Housing (SSMUH) Implementation

On November 30, 2023, the provincial legislature adopted Bill 44 (Housing Statutes (Residential Development) Amendment Act, 2023), which amended the Local Government Act (the “Act”) in order to facilitate the delivery of “more small-scale, multi-unit housing for people, including townhomes, triplexes, and laneway homes, and fix outdated zoning rules to help build more homes faster.”

Under a new Section 481.3(7) of the Local Government Act, the Regional District “must consider applicable guidelines” made by the Minister (e.g. the SSMUH Policy Manual) when developing or adopting a zoning bylaw to permit the use and density of use required under to be permitted under the Act.

On December 7, 2023, the provincial government released the Provincial Policy Manual & Site Standards (the “Small-Scale, Multi-Unit Housing (SSMUH) Policy Manual”, or the “Manual”) as a resource to assist local governments with the implementation of zoning bylaw amendments required to comply with the changes to the Act.  The Manual includes recommended approaches to regulations governing building types, density, setbacks, building height, parcel coverage, vehicle parking requirements as well as the use of development permit area designations.  When considering these regulations, the province has advised that “creating a favourable regulatory environment for SSMUH housing to help overcome these barriers will require an openness to new building forms in areas traditionally reserved for detached single-family and duplex homes.”

On February 16, 2024, the provincial government announced the creation of a “time-based extension” wherein a local government could apply to have the deadline for SSMUH Compliance extended beyond June 30, 2024, under the following circumstances:

  1. The local government is in the process of upgrading infrastructure that services the specific area or specific lots for which the extension is being requested;
  2. The infrastructure that services the area where SSMUH would apply is such that compliance by June 30, 2024, is likely to increase a risk to health, public safety or the environment in that area; or
  3. Extraordinary circumstances exist that otherwise prevent compliance in relation to the area.

In response, the Regional District Board resolved to submit an “Application to Request an Extension to SSMUH Compliance Deadline” for the Heritage Hills, Lakeshore Highlands and Vintage Views area in recognition of existing infrastructure concerns (outlined above). 

As part of this process, the Regional District Board directed that an amendment to the zoning of parcels at Heritage Hills, Lakeshore Highlands and Vintage Views be initiated in order to reduce permitted densities. 

NOTE: the zoning amendments are proposing to include a requirement that new "single detached dwellings" be connected to the community sewer system serving Heritage Hills and Vintage Views. The purpose of this particular amendment is to address concerns regarding the development of new septic systems within the sewer service area.

A copy of the Draft amendment bylaws are linked below.

Amendment Bylaw Status

DocumentsPublic EngagementRDOS Board Consideration

Draft Amendment Bylaws:

Amendment Bylaw No. 2603.27

Amendment Bylaw No. 2800.43

(version - 2024-06-24)


Other Documents:

Provincial Policy Manual (SSMUH)


Public Information Meeting:




Feedback Form


mail: 101 Martin Street, Penticton, BC, V2A-5J9

fax: 250-492-0063

NOTE: submitted comments will be made public as part of an RDOS Board Agenda.

Planning and Development Committee:

Administrative Report

Draft OCP Amendment Bylaw

Draft Zoning Amendment Bylaw

PowerPoint Presentation

Minutes (2024-05-09)


Bylaw Introduction (1st & 2nd):

Administrative Report

Amendment Bylaw No. 2603.27

Amendment Bylaw No. 2800.43




3rd reading & Adoption:

Administrative Report


Contact RDOS Planning