British Columbia Institute of

Important Notice: COVID-19 Institute response


TSYH 4530 - Subdivision Planning/Design Part 1: Land Use Planning

Transystems Part-time Studies Course

School of Construction and the Environment

BCIT is planning for a substantial return to on-campus activity for the fall 2021 term as informed by BC Public Health Officer guidelines. Refer to each course listing for details.

Course Details

Introduces natural state land use assessment, planning elements, community zoning and site plans, neighbourhoods, lot and dwelling types, traffic considerations, road classifications, road patterns and names, single site planning, building envelopes, setbacks, lot layout design, cul-de-sacs, walkways and emergency access routes. Acts and Regulations governing subdivisions, the approval process, engineering servicing criteria and the economic aspects of land use development are reviewed.





Fall 2021

Below is one offering of this course for the Fall 2021 term.

CRN 30947

Start any time

This is a distance learning course. Start any time. You have 52 weeks from the date you register to complete this course.



Course Outline

TBD – see Learning Outcomes in the interim




  1. Correspondence format.
  2. Please note that the above price is for tuition only; textbooks (if required) are additional. Course materials are available in the Learning Hub: Textbooks are not shipped automatically, please order them from the BCIT Bookstore: Civil Technology PTS Department:
  3. Important course information will be sent to you immediately after registering. Check your myBCIT email account to access this information.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, the student will be able to:

Module 1 - Natural Land Assessment

  • Define the major natural considerations which govern the assessment of land use as related to general urban land uses.
  • Relate urban land uses and their requirements to the natural characteristics of the land.
  • Explain urban land uses and their servicing requirements in terms of the natural characteristics of the land.

Module 2 - Introduction to Planning Concepts

  • Define the terms related to subdivision planning including community plans, settlement plans, site plans, neighbourhoods, zoning descriptions and densities.
  • Explain and identify the relationship between density, dwelling type and lot sizes.
  • Define the categories, characteristics, and siting of parks, open space and schools in relation to the neighborhood and the community.

Module 3 - Road and Traffic Considerations

  • Define the urban road classifications and the typical right of way and roadway width requirements for each.
  • List the types of traffic and define them in terms of circulation requirements and the planning considerations to meet those requirements.
  • Identify the basic road patterns utilized in the planning process.
  • Identify or label existing or proposed new roads based on the general definitions used in industry.

Module 4 - Residential Lot Standards

  • Explain the lot, site and dwelling standards relative to a subject site given the zone or density permitted.
  • Sketch typical subdivision lots based on the lot, site, and dwelling standards.
  • Sketch typical subdivision lots for a cul-de-sac based on the lot, site and dwelling standards.

Module 5 - Residential Site Planning

  • Identify the external site factors relative to a subject site.
  • Identify the internal site factors relative to a subject site.
  • Assess a subject site for adherence to lot, site and dwelling standards and site factors.

Module 6 - Urban Rezoning and Subdivision Process

  • Explain the general requirements and steps in the process of the rezoning of subject site.
  • List and explain the procedural steps for the passing of a municipal by-law.
  • List and explain the requirements for the holding of a public hearing and its relationship to the rezoning process and the passing of a by-law.
  • Define and explain the three primary considerations in the approval process from initial application to the 'approval in principle to proceed' stage.
  • List and describe the general functions of the planner, engineer, council and other agencies in the approval process.

Module 7 - Rural Development

  • Explain the role of the Ministry of Transportation and Highways in the development approval of unorganized territory.
  • Describe the steps in obtaining development approval for a rural developable property.
  • Describe the role of other agencies, including Regional Districts as they relate to the approval process for rural lands.

Module 8 - Engineering Considerations

  • List and describe the five services required for a subdivision proposal.
  • Recognize and explain the relationship between topography, road alignment and lot access requirements.
  • Identify and explain the design criteria standards for road proposals based on topographic mapping.
  • Recognize and explain the relationship between topography, lot layout proposals and gravity servicing corridors and the related design criteria.
  • Examine and evaluate small subdivision proposals based on the governing engineering criteria and the topography.

Module 9 - Cost/Benefit Analysis

  • List and describe the participants in the development process and their conflicting motives and objectives in terms of development cost/benefit.
  • State and compare the factors in subdivision development financing, under inflation and recession pressures and their effect on the regulatory agencies.
  • Define the approval process time frame in terms of the total development timetable.
  • List and describe the major cost factors relative to the development of a subdivision proposal.
  • Examine and assess a small subdivision in terms of establishing raw land values based on defined cost factors.

Effective as of Fall 2003

Related Programs

TSYH 4530 is offered as a part of the following programs:

School of Construction and the Environment

  1. Civil Technology
    Part-time   Certificate

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