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Written By JOSHUA SANTOS
Town of Caledon staff have launched their official plan 2041 review.
“It's time to renew and modernize our Official Plan, and to bring it to conformity with the province and regional documents,” said Sylvia Kirkwood, manager of policy and sustainability at the Town of Caledon. This plan will now take us to 2041, and possibly longer.”
The plan will be a guidebook of development in the Town for the next 20 years. It will look into projected growth of housing, employment, services and recreational areas in the community among many other areas.
“Many of you have heard recent announcements from the provincial government about changes to the growth plan, changes that will provide for more opportunities for additional housing, additional jobs, removing barriers, and red tape,” said Kirkwood.
“Planning staff have been meeting with the Province, about these planned changes, through roundtables and forums, over the last few months. As we work through this process, we will need to be flexible as more changes are coming from the Province.”
She said the Region of Peel's Official Plan must also conform to those provincial plans.
“This has to happen before we can confirm to their plan,” said Kirkwood. “They started their review back in 2013, and it is currently ongoing. Their timeline to be complete are by 2022, by the Province, because they will require their approval with their documents.”
Ontario's population is projected to grow by 30.2 per cent, or almost 4.3 million, over the next 24 years, from an estimated 14.2 million on July 1, 2017 to almost 18.5 million by July 1, 2041, according to provincial government projection numbers.
Growth in the Greater Toronto Area (Durham, Halton, Peel and York) is projected to be significantly faster than the Ontario average, with the addition of over 1.8 million people to the suburban GTA. Peel is projected to see its population increase by 47.8 per cent rise.
She said the Region of Peel has been given a population target of 1.97 million by 2041.
“The Region is then responsible to ensure that population, and it's density targets, are distributed amongst Brampton, Mississauga and Caledon,” said Kirkwood.
Staff initiated background research, international consultation and created the work plan last year. From 2019 to 2023, they will be in the midst of ongoing public engagement and consultation providing discussion papers, drafting policies, having the Official Plan review approved and then work on a comprehensive zoning by-law.
“Our intent here for this entire work plan is to do this within this term of council,” said Kirkwood. “As you can see from this, there is a lot of work to do and this is an extremely ambitious schedule, which will need to remain flexible, as changes continue to come from the Province. We'll make sure there is ample opportunity for the community to participate in this process.”
Through a community engagement strategy, marketing and branding and governance, they developed focuses areas. Those are growth, settlement, housing and employment, transportation, technology and infrastructure, community well-being (tourism, heritage, healthy communities and culture), natural resources and agriculture and climate change.
During the next two years, staff plan to focus on many projects around transportation, climate change, land use, affordable housing, heritage conservation, traffic calming and the GTA West Corridor among many others.
Then, from 2021 to 2023, they will bring their recommendations from the past two working years and look for council's approval on it. After council's approval, it, along with the Region's plan, will go the Province.
The Town's Official Plan was first developed in 1979. The first major development occurred in 1997, when the tri-nodal growth strategy was established.
“That directed growth primarily to Bolton, Mayfield West and Caledon East,” said Kirkwood. “The second amendment was done in 2013, and that planned our community to 2031, giving us a population target of 108,000.”
Developers, residents and councillors sound off
Michael Gagnon, managing principal planner of Gagnon Walker Domes Ltd. (GWD) was joined by his colleague Andrew Walker, principal planner. They represented four different landowner groups in Mayfield East, Caledon Village, Caledon East (Innis Lake Road) and Bolton who want future development in those areas, as well. One of them, Mayfield East, will have an influx of residents and jobs coming to the community, according to Gagnon.
“The expectation is that there's going to be over 33,000 people coming to your Town between and 2031 and 2041 and some 30,000 jobs,” said Gagnon. “This is an area in which we believe is (located well) and able to accommodate, not only residential development, but also employment development that's going to come forward in the future.”
His clients in Mayfield understand their lands have attributes and location characteristics that make them attractive to residential, and employment opportunities because of the proximity to Highway 410, Mayfield road transportation corridor and closeness Tullamore in Brampton.
Resident Sherry Brioschi asked if Town staff we're going to do boundary expansions to areas with high projected populations, including Bolton.
“Through any boundary expansions, to deal with additional populations or jobs through employment numbers, that's a regional responsibility,” said Kirkwood. “The Province has delegated that responsibility down to the region for settlement boundary expansions.”
Caledon would have to partner with the Region of Peel to set these new boundaries.
Brioschi also discussed affordable housing for youth. She spoke with Mayor Allan Thompson and councillors about it before.
“Our youth don't need those 2,500 square foot homes,” said Brioschi. “What they need is, what we all started off with, when that was the 1,000 square foot homes, three bedrooms, one bathroom. They don't need a $25,000 kitchen, they can use an Ikea $5,000 kitchen. You can buy tile at 99 cents per foot. I'm going to encourage the developers in this room, because I know there's a lot of them in here, to start at looking at that to help our younger generation get into these homes. That way, they can start building equity and get into the bigger home and then the younger ones after them, can move into these littler homes.”
Ward 3 and 4 regional coun. Jennifer Innis asked Kirkwood how Caledon's review would affect white belt visioning. It was suspended due to the former provincial Liberals government halting the GTA West Corridor project. She said Mayor Thompson, Ward 2 regional coun. Johanna Downey her very recently from Jeff Yurek, minister of transportation that it will start again soon.
“There's a lot of moving parts, so we need to know what's happening with the GTA West Corridor,” said Kirkwood. “We need to know what's happening with our sub watershed work that the region is undertaking, we need final population numbers.
“When it's time, we'll bring that visioning exercise back to the table. It'll be in a very short window of time, we're hoping 2019 and 2022, there will be some visioning. It'll be a much-scoped scale of visioning. We won't be looking at all of the white belt. We may be looking at a smaller area of the white belt and then looking beyond 2041.”
Ward 4 regional coun. Annette Groves said the Region has identified the Tullamore and area near Highway 410 as ideal places for employment in Caledon. She asked Kirkwood if Caledon had the same idea in mind.
“It's too early in the process to land on where we see innovation districts, employment and residential,” said Kirkwood. “It's too early in the process, but we're keeping an open mind, we're hearing, we're collaborating with our colleagues at the region and with this now, we're going to be collaborating with the public.”
Groves supports the region's plan and recommendations on future employment lands.
“I know my residents in Bolton have had enough and they just don't want anymore,” said Groves. “We have our fair share. Moving forward, I think that's a really good location for future employment lands. We have infrastructure there that can handle the type of employment from industry that's coming to Caledon.”
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Post date: 2019-03-14 11:37:45
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