What is a Civic Address?
A civic address is an identification system using a consistent method to address and locate buildings. The three main components are the Civic Number, Street Name and the community name or General Service Area (GSA).
Assigning a Civic Number
New civic numbers are assigned during the development permit application process.
When the number has been assigned, the Planning Department will mail a notice to the owner of the property indicating the civic number. At this time, the Planning Department will also fax a notice to 911 notifying them of the new civic address. Because of this step in the process, it is important that residents do not assign themselves a civic number. When this occurs, the Planning Department and 911 are not aware of the address if an emergency call is placed from that location.
Civic Address Standards
There are standards that are set that need to be followed when assigning the civic number and when displaying and creating the civic number sign. These standards are simple guidelines that are put in place to help identify the civic number in case of emergency. If these standards are not followed, it can become confusing for emergency responders, so please remember to follow the guidelines.
The owner of the lot on which a building is located shall keep posted on the lot or building the assigned civic number in the following manner:
- The civic number shall be in Arabic numerals (standard English numbers)
- The bottom of the numeral shall be at least 1.2 meters above ground
- The colour of each numeral shall be the same and be clearly in contrast to the colour of the building, post or sign on which it is located
- The height of the numerals shall not be less than 100 millimeters
- The civic number shall be placed upon the building, post or sign in such a location that it faces towards and is clearly visible from the roadway or the street from which it is numbered.
For more complete information, the Civic Addressing By-law is available for download below.
Information On Using 911
When a call is placed to 911, the caller's phone number, civic address, and associated police, fire, and ambulance emergency responders are listed on the 911 screen (unless the call is made from a cell phone). Under this system, even if the caller can not speak when calling 911, the 911 operator can still see the civic address and send emergency responders. 911 is also able to handle TDD calls from hearing impaired people.
The 911 center does not dispatch emergency services; instead, the operator links the caller to the appropriate dispatch agency who will dispatch the required services.
To make sure you can be found in an emergency, please post your civic number where it can be seen clearly from the road, day or night.
Online Civic Address Search