Peterborough | Ontario

By-law Number 12-169, Being a by-law to prohibit the use of water pipes in enclosed public places and in certain other places in the City of Peterborough Also known as the “Water Pipe By-law”.

Use of Water Pipes is prohibited in any enclosed public place. They are also prohibited on any land owned by the City of Peterborough, the Peterborough Utilities Group, the Peterborough County-City Health Unit or by the Peterborough Regional Health Centre. Water pipes are also banned on sidewalk and rooftop patios, but only among establishments that have a liquor licence. No person shall use a Water Pipe within the Riverview Park and Zoo. They are also prohibited in all City parks, except in designated smoking areas.

Products Included

Other Weeds and Substances, Waterpipes


Water Pipe – means any lighted or heated smoking equipment used to smoke tobacco or non-tobacco substances or any combination thereof in a form that may be smoked or inhaled. Enclosed Public Place – means any enclosed indoor area to which the public have access as of right or by invitation, whether expressed or implied, whether or not an admission fee is charged, but only during such times as the public have such access, including, without limiting the generality of the foregoing, any area that is licensed under the Liquor License Act, restaurants, bowling centers, bingo halls, theatres, recreational facilities, banquet halls, banquet rooms, meeting rooms, reception areas, washrooms, stairwells, corridors, elevators, escalators, and common areas of residential buildings such as lobbies, lounges, mail rooms, laundry rooms and reception areas.

Places Smoking Prohibited

Municipal Property
Patios - Restaurants and Bars
Waterpipes (indoors)
Waterpipes (outdoors)

Policy Analysis

This is considered leading edge because it prohibits the use of waterpipes (tobacco as well as other weeds or substances) in enclosed workplaces and public places, outdoors on licensed patios, and on property owned by the Municipality. The whereas clauses of the preamble to the bylaw provide the authority and grounds on which banning the use of waterpipes in public places is based (note use of Section 10 of the Municipal Act): WHEREAS Section 10(2) of the Municipal Act, 2001, as amended, permits councils of local municipalities to pass by-laws and make regulations for the health, safety and well-being of persons within the municipality; AND WHEREAS it has been determined that the use of water pipes to smoke tobacco or herbal products is a health hazard because of the creation of second hand smoke and is otherwise a public nuisance because of its irritating and discomforting properties to the inhabitants of the City of Peterborough; AND WHEREAS it is desirable for the health, safety, and well-being of the inhabitants for of the City of Peterborough to prohibit the use of water pipes in enclosed public places and in certain other places in the City of Peterborough for the better protection of persons from conditions injurious to health in accordance with the provisions of this by-law. Smoking is also prohibited at the zoo. Unfortunately, there are designated smoking areas in which they may be used in City parks. Designated smoking areas are not recommended. Although water pipes have been banned on sidewalk and rooftop restaurant and bar patios, this only applies to establishments licensed area under the Liquor License Act. The reasoning behind this minor flaw in the bylaw is not clear. Peterborough Councillors are to be commended for their leadership in Ontario and across Canada in developing a bylaw that specifically addresses the use of water pipes in public.

Date Passed: December 10, 2012

Date in Force: December 10, 2012

Date Last Amended:

Leading Edge: Yes

Level of Government: Municipal

Smoke-free Ontario Act Status: Exceeds Smoke-free Ontario Act

Bylaw Under Development? No

Supporting Information

Please find contact information related to this bylaw, and links to supporting materials.

Contact: or 705-742-7777 ext. 0

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