Planning Study – Consumption and Treatment Services

On April 10, 2018, Cambridge City Council passed an interim control by-law for one year to allow for a planning study to be undertaken for the three core areas to review zoning regulations for potential consumption and treatment sites in Cambridge. The by-law was extended to March 26, 2020.

The planning study, which was completed by an independent consultant, was presented at the February 11, 2020 Planning and Development Committee Meeting at Historic City Hall starting at 7 pm. You can view the report here, as well as the Council meeting here

At a Council meeting on February 18, 2020, Council deferred a decision on the study options until after the Ward 7 by-election. You can view the February 18 Council meeting and public delegations here.

On November 18, 2020 Cambridge Council discussed the February 11, 2020 planning study report again.

UPDATE: Cambridge Council decided that the Consumption and Treatment Services (CTS) site will be permitted anywhere as public use if operated by a government body or public health care agency. In order to receive provincial funding, City Council must endorse the site before a site can be established. Read the report.

Learn more about the CTS process and next steps.

What are Consumption and Treatment Services (CTS)?

These are sites that allow people who are struggling with addiction issues to use drugs in a medically supervised health facility that is sterile and safe. It also enables them to access treatment and support services, as well as to receive immediate medical assistance in case of a drug overdose.

Why did the City do this planning study?

The City’s Official Plan and Zoning By-laws do not currently include policies or regulations for consumption and treatment services and/or other similar services.

The planning study provides Official Plan policy and zoning recommendations for consumption and treatment services and/or other similar services. The planning study reviews Federal and Provincial criteria for the siting of consumption and treatment services, along with other land use compatibility considerations.

It is important to note that the planning study specifically looks at municipal zoning and does not determine the potential locations for a consumption and treatment services site. The process of evaluating potential locations for a possible consumption and treatment services site will be completed by a separate City-led project team after a decision is made on the planning study.

Public input

A drop-in session was held December 16, 2019 from 4-8 p.m. at Cambridge City Hall to provide information and gather public input on the Planning Study.

Drop-in session highlights from December 16, 2019


Download the presentation slides

Display boards


It is important to note that the planning study is not part of the Feasibility Study completed by the Region of Waterloo Public Health.