Approved by Cabinet in 1985 and revised in 1994, 2005 and 2017, the Niagara Escarpment Plan (NEP) is Canada’s first large-scale environmental land use plan. 

The NEP consists of three parts, five appendices and 10 maps.  

  • Part 1includes:  
    • objectives 
    • designation criteria  
    • policies for seven land use designations: 
      • natural 
      • protection 
      • rural 
      • recreation 
      • urban 
      • minor urban  
      • mineral resource extraction 
  • Part 2 consists of development criteria to be applied to all development within the area of the NEP. 
  • Part 3 includes objectives and policies for the Niagara Escarpment Parks and Open Space System (NEPOSS).

The NEC has prepared an Office Consolidation of the Niagara Escarpment Plan 2017. It incorporates urban amendments approved during the Co-ordinated Provincial Plan Review and certain site-specific amendments approved by the Minister prior to June 2017.   

Niagara Escarpment Plan (Office Consolidation – April 5, 2021) (PDF 7MB)