Burlington mayor calls for land to be returned to Greenbelt
In light of the developing scandal surrounding the Provincial government’s handling of previously protected Greenbelt land, Mayor Marianne Meed Ward says Burlington is committed to keeping development off of local greenspace.
In a statement released today (Sept. 5), the mayor applauded the findings of the Office of the Integrity Commissioner which found that Ontario’s Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing had violated rules when removing land from the protected list. The mayor urged Premier Doug Ford and his ruling party to return the land to the Greenbelt.
The Ontario Greenbelt runs from Niagara to Durham Region and circles the Greater Toronto Area and was set aside in 2005 to restrict urban sprawl and prevent loss of farmland and natural heritage. It encompasses about two million acres of both public and privately owned land. Greenbelt areas in Burlington were not part of those that were removed by Queen’s Park.
The mayor goes on to state that Burlington is committed to meeting its pledge of building 29,000 homes within the next 10 years and wants to work with developers to get started on projects as soon as possible.
“…and we are equally committed to doing so in a way that protects our Greenbelt and rural area,” the mayor continues, “with growth directed within our urban boundary at our GO stations, retail plazas and identified growth areas.”
Following the release of the Integrity Commissioner’s findings, Steve Clark, Ontario’s Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, has since resigned and has been replaced by Markham-Stouffville MPP Paul Calandra.
“On behalf of Burlington City Council, I look forward to working with the Hon. Paul Calandra, the newly-appointed Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, and the Hon. Rob Flack, Associate Minister of Housing with a specific mandate on attainable housing and modular homes, to achieve these shared goals,” the mayor added in her statement.
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