Sustainability Metrics

The Sustainability Performance Metrics are a unique collaboration between the City of Ricmond Hill, City of Vaughan, City of Markham and City of Brampton carried out with the assistance of the Government of Canada and the Federation of Municipalities (FCM) through the Municipalities for Climate Innovation Program. 

The purpose of this scoring system is to encourage developers and builders to work with Richmond Hill staff to achieve healthy, complete, and sustainable communities. The metrics are green development standards that quantify and evaluate the sustainability performance of new development and encourage proponents of development to achieve sustainable design targets that go beyond provincial and municipal requirements

The Sustainability Assessment Tool helps quantify, rank and inform the sustainability score of proposed

  • Draft Plan of Subdivision (Draft Plan) and
  • Site Plan applications. 

When submitting development applications for Site Plan and Draft Plan approval, applicants are required to include a sustainability score and summary letter with their submission. Development applications must achieve at least a "good" performance level to be considered for approval.

Richmond Hill's Sustainability scores and performance levels:

Performance Level

Sustainability Score


Draft Plan: 21 to 35 points

Site Plan: 32 to 45 points

Very Good

Draft Plan: 36 to 55 points

Site Plan: 46 to 65 points


Draft Plan: 56 points or more

Site Plan: 66 points or more

What Resources are available to guide me through the process?

  • The Instructions contain step-by-step explanations on how to use Sustainability Assessment Tool. They provide an overview of how to select your scenario and how to proceed in completing the web-based tool.
  • The Sustainability Assessment Tool is a web-based tool that is completed as part of the planning application process. This tool replaces the excel file that was previously available to applicants. This tool is intended to assist applicants with ensuring that their development applications address sustainability policies of the City’s Official Plan, and other legislation and policies, including the Ontario Building Code.
  • The Guidebook and Glossary contains materials that explain each metric in detail and how the points are allocated. Throughout the webform there are links to relevant sections of the Guidebook and Glossary for easy reference. Please review this document concurrently when completing the Sustainability Assessment Tool. For an overview of all of the scores associated with each metric for both Site Plan and Draft Plan applications see the 2014 Sustainability Metrics Table.

Sustainability Metrics Update Project

The City is currently undertaking a review of the Sustainability Metrics program. This two-part project involves updating specific metrics, including their targets and point allocations, in order to reflect past uptake and current trends in the development industry, policies, and legislation. Moreover, the City is also reviewing potential incentive programs and other implementation measures to help make the Sustainability Metrics program more effective.

On January 27, 2021, City Council approved in-principle City Staff's recommendations to update the City's Sustainability Metrics Tool and threshold scoring (refer to SRPI.21.019 - Sustainability Metric Update Project), subject to further consultation with building industry stakeholders. In addition, City Council also considered recommendations to consider a multi-pronged approach to incentives and directed City Staff to report back to Council with specific inventices and an implementation plan. Included with the staff report are: 

Note to Users:

Until such time as the City has updated its Sustainability Assessment Tool to host the updated metrics, applicant's are advised to  continue using the 2014 Sustainability Assessment Tool.  

The City will inform users of the tool when updates to the webform have occurred to reflect the updated metrics through updates to this webpage. If you would like to notified of updates, please subscribe to this page and/or contact us using the contact information found at the bottom of this page.

Helpful Resources

Enbridge Savings by Design

Savings by Design Affordable Housing Program provides cash-back incentives for affordable housing builders and developers, assisting them to build cost-effective affordable housing, while at the same time, improve the comfort and quality of life for residents. (Associated to Designing for Lifecycle housing metric).

Savings by Design Green Building Initiative offers supportive and financial incentives to help builders design and construct buildings and houses with higher energy performance and help homeowners save on energy costs. (Associated to Energy metrics within the Building and Infrastructure category).

These Enbridge programs include a "visioning session" facilitated by Sustainable Buildings Canada and an Enbridge Sales Representative. The visioning session is a preliminary, one to two-hour meeting that helps to define your project requirements and sustainability priorities beyond energy efficiency.

AlectraDrive @Home Program

The AlectraDrive @Home Pilot Program offers multi-unit residential building residents with subsidized electric vehicle charging stations, up to 50% of installation costs, and an integrated smart charging platform to help mitigate electricity costs and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. (Associated to future metric updates). 

York Region's Sustainable Residential Development Incentives

Sustainable Development through LEED in York Region offers additional servicing capacity assignment credits to the local municipality as an incentive to promote sustainable residential high-density developments that are four storeys of higher. (Associated to Energy metrics within the Building and Infrastructure category).

Servicing Incentive Program (SIPS) provides water and wastewater servicing capacity assignment credits for new residential grade-related developments that are a maximum of three storeys in height.

Toronto Regional Conservation Authority's water education and awareness program

The Sustainable Technologies Evaluation Program (STEP) is a conservation authority-led initiative that fosters broader implementation of technologies that protect water resources and reduce our carbon footprint. (Associated to water conservation metrics within the Natural Environment and Open Space metrics).

The Sustainable Neighbourhood Action Plan (SNAP) Program aims to accelerate the creation of sustainable neighbourhoods in older urban areas by providing a neighbourhood-based solution for achieving greater impact in urban renewal and climate action. (Associated to Complete Community Metrics found throughout entire the suite).