IMAGE - Canalisation de fossés et drainage
Closing ditches and drainage


Maintenance of ditches and the closure of ditches.

The main purpose of ditches is to collect and drain surface water and evacuate water found under asphalt. It is essential to keep them well maintained.

Ditches play an important role in protecting the environment. They help maintain biodiversity that allows fauna and flora to grow and flourish. Maintaining vegetation on the sides protects against erosion and acts as a natural filter for sediments.

Property owner’s responsibility 

• Openings must be regularly maintained.
• A properly sealed backwater valve must be installed on your indoor foundation drain to prevent water that has overflowed from the ditch from flooding your home.
• DO NOT place rock riprap or landscape the banks of your ditch.
• DO NOT completely re-profile ditches yourself—in other words, DO NOT completely remove vegetation from the bottom, sides or banks of ditches.
• The Town has the expertise required to completely re-profile ditches as needed using specialized machinery.
• DO NOT fill your ditch with grass cuttings or piles of leaves as this may cause a blockage.

The Town’s responsibility

• The Town may re-profile a ditch whenever required to improve water flow.
• The Town must ensure that by-laws and basic information on the maintenance of ditches are available to property owners.

Closing of ditch

Homeowners wishing to close the ditch adjacent to their property must obtain beforehand the required permit from the Infrastructure Department and comply with the requirements of by-law no. 758.To submit a request at no cost for the opening of a file:

The homeowner must:

  1. print the form available on-line (click here to download it) or pick up a paper copy at the Infrastructure Department;
  2. complete the section entitled Request for on-site pre-inspection;
  3. bring the form to the Infrastructure Department during business hours;
  4. fill out the form in the presence of an official of Infrastructure Department.

Processing the request:

To be processed, requests must be submitted to the Town between March 15 and October 1 of each year.

Before issuing a permit, an official of the Infrastructure Department:

  1. must do an on-site pre-inspection along with a survey to determine if the ditch meets minimum requirements for the installation of a pipe ; if it does, the Town
  2. prepares the plan and the technical requirements specifications;

 ¹       The official carries out the on-site pre-inspection within thirty (30) days of the receipt of the request.

If the ditch meets minimum requirements:

The homeowner must:

  1. come to the Infrastructure Department during opening hours;
  2. obtain a permit and pay the $120 fee ²;
  3. leave a $500 deposit (reimbursable)²;

²      Payment may be made in cash or by certified cheque or debit card. The amount must be paid in full.


Follow-up and compliance

First inspection

Prior to backfilling, the Town official will carry out an inspection to ensure that the work done and the materials used are in compliance (pipes, fittings, etc.).

Second inspection

After backfilling is completed, the Town official will do another inspection to ensure that all technical requirements indicated on the plan have been met.

Non-compliant work

If the work is non compliant and if the non-compliance is not corrected after the 3rd inspection, the Town reserves the right to do all the necessary work. In this case, the $500 deposit will not be reimbursed.

Last updated: 10/24/2018
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1960, chemin Sainte-Angélique, Saint-Lazare (Québec), J7T 3A3
Telephone: 450 424-8000

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