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The future is now in Brampton

The future is now in Brampton

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The future is now in Brampton

It’s one thing for a neighbourhood to be in transition, quite another for an entire city. But that’s precisely what’s happening in Brampton, where a concerted effort to bring the municipality into the future now, is yielding visible results.

In a city of about 600,000 – the third largest in the GTA and the ninth largest in Canada – Brampton has been booming for years. Consider, for example that current population is almost double what it was not even 20 years ago.

What’s attracting newcomers to Brampton in such numbers? In short – economic growth. Indeed, with major companies such as Loblaw Companies Ltd., Canadian Tire Corp., Coca-Cola Bottling Co. Ltd. and Rogers Communications Inc. having headquarters in the city, employment opportunities have been plentiful. Brampton’s economy in recent years has diversified to include sectors such as communications technologies, life sciences and business services.

Cybersecure catalyst

And even more recently, education. Just last month, for example, the City confirmed a collaboration with Ryerson University, outlining the required funding and resources needed for establishing the Ryerson University-led Innovation Hub and Cybersecure Catalyst in downtown Brampton. This includes the Chang School of Continuing Education expanding its cybersecurity courses; launching the Brampton Incubation/Innovation Hub; and the Cybersecure Catalyst, a new national centre for innovation and collaboration in cybersecurity.

“This is a very exciting move forward for Brampton, moving important projects with Ryerson University closer to reality,” says Mayor Patrick Brown. “These projects will help spur economic growth, create jobs and position Brampton as a hub for cybersecurity.”

Managing such growth requires planning, including the City’s Vision 2040, a long-term vision to reinvent Brampton. The plan includes such key transformations as including model new neighbourhoods; an improved transit network, new core loop, walking and cycling networks; better designed communities, handsome buildings; and sustainability built into everything.

Budgeting growth

Brampton’s 2019-21 budget proposal includes initiatives to that end, including increasing Brampton Transit’s fleet by 16 per cent over three years, adding 46 conventional buses and 25 Zum buses; creating a new Marketing and Foreign Direct Investment Program; and a Community Improvement Program to incentivize the economic sectors identified in Brampton’s Economic Development Master Plan.

It’s not all about business in Brampton, however. Proximity to nature also helps deliver quality of life in the city. Gage Park, Brampton’s oldest municipal park, opened in 1903; Heart Lake Conservation Area, occupying 169 hectares in the Etobicoke Creek watershed; and Chinguacousy Park, a 40-hectare park in the Bramalea section of town.

Location, location, location

• Population 593,638

• 42 kms from Toronto, 20 kms to Mississauga

Key landmarks

• Gage Park

• Heart Lake Conservation Area

• Chinguacousy Park

• Bramalea City Centre

• Shoppers World

Select upcoming housing developments

Beechwood by Paradise Developments; detached, semis and townhomes.

FirstHome Sunny Meadow by The Daniels Corporation; townhomes.

Mayfield Village by Regal Crest Homes; singles, semis and townhomes.

Mount Pleasant North by Mattamy Homes; townhomes.

Union Mount Pleasant by Mattamy Homes; boutique midrise condominiums.

Upper Valleylands by Fieldgate Homes; townhomes and semis.

Vales of the Humber Estates by Regal Crest Homes, single-detached homes.

Westfield by Royalpark Homes; detached and semis.


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John Tory

GTA mayoral elections – who won and where they stand on housing

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GTA mayoral elections – who won and where they stand on housing

John Tory

Housing policy, affordability and supply were among the key issues in many municipalities leading up to the Oct. 22 Ontario elections.

The Toronto Real Estate Board (TREB), the Building Industry and Land Development Association (BILD) and others did their best to alert voters to the issues, and to gage candidates on how well they understood them.

Homes Publishing did its own assessment of a selection of GTA municipalities in the context of housing development.

But now that the results are in (well, most of them), let’s take a look how some of the notable races shook down, and the various policies of the newly elected mayors, with help from BILD.

 

AURORA

Tom Mrakas (New)
Housing and growth: Proposes to protect Aurora’s Stable Neighbourhoods from “monster home” infill, by using planning tools such as Interim Control By-laws. Also wants to ensure better land use planning decisions are made through the Local Appeals Body and by implementing a Design Review Panel. He intends to uphold the Official Plan and continue to oppose golf course redevelopment. Improving municipal infrastructure, through complete streets, is also a priority.
Taxes: Proposes to reduce the tax levy.

 

BRAMPTON

Patrick Brown (new)
Housing: Proposes to create a streamlined, more efficient approvals process at City Hall for new home construction and renovations across all levels of affordability. Proposes to develop a housing strategy that encourages neighbourhood-sensitive development of rooming houses, basement apartments and in-law suites.

 

BURLINGTON

Marianne Meed Ward (New)
Growth: Opposes overdevelopment of Burlington and will seek to control growth by reducing provisions in the Official Plan, as well as accept growth only when infrastructure can handle it.
Housing: Intends to secure affordable housing with inclusionary zoning and require new development to provide a percentage of senior-friendly units. Intends to set greenspace per population targets within reasonable walking distance through prioritizing parkland over cash-in-lieu for major new developments.

 

CALEDON

Allan Thompson
Housing and growth: Supports housing and growth management initiatives that will maintain the characteristics of Caledon’s communities and create opportunities for residents and future residents of live, work and retire.

 

EAST GWILLIMBURY

Virginia Hackson
Housing: Proposes to complete the first phase of growth of 7,000 homes. In terms of transportation corridors, plans to work with the Mayor of Bradford to solve gridlock on roads between Hwys. 404 and 400.
Infrastructure: Proposes to work with the Province and local MPP to deal with the delay of the Upper York Sewage Solution which will ultimately eliminate the Holland Landing Sewage Lagoons. Proposes to address the need for quality broadband in the community.

 

HALTON HILLS

Rick Bonnette
Housing: Proposes to continue to manage difficult conversations around intensification and growth the Province has mandated and the development residents are seeing.

 

KING CITY

Steve Pellegrini
Plans to focus on business growth, the new municipal office, the library and seniors centre expansion project, as well as road beautification in the township.

 

MISSISSAUGA

Bonnie Crombie
Housing: Intends to institute an Inclusionary Zoning policy to incentivize the building of new, affordable units. Proposes to form partnerships with leaders in affordable housing to get new buildings in the ground on a faster pace.
Environment: Proposes to work with staff to bolster Green building standards that will improve energy efficiency, reduce greenhouse gas and improve urban forest canopy.
Development: Supports Mississauga’s office for a Development Ambassador.

 

NEWMARKET

John Taylor
Economy: Top priorities include jobs and the economy, community building and parks recreation and trails. Wants to the Renew Economic Development Strategy and increase jobs in the community. Grow the city’s broadband company to deliver affordable high-speed internet to local businesses. Proposes to keep taxesbelow GTA average.
Growth: Proposes to meet regularly with existing employers and grow local business base.
Community Building: Proposes to protect neighbourhoods – intensify in the right places.
Housing: New housing developments must include options for low/moderate-income families. Create a community inclusivity round table and increase senior-friendly housing and recreation.

 

OAKVILLE

Rob Burton
Growth: Proposes to continue to protect Glen Abbey through the use of Cultural Heritage Landscape provisions and court challenges.
Environment: Proposes to focus on protecting greenspace and the environment and controlling growth.

 

OSHAWA

Dan Carter (New)
Growth/Housing/Transit: A 4-Pillar Platform includes creating affordable, vibrant, healthy communities that invests in active transportation networks and creates employment opportunities with industries.

 

RICHMOND HILL

Dave Barrow
Growth: Proposes to continue with the Town’s economic vitality, build a strong community, manage our growth to respect the existing neighbourhoods and lead a responsive and efficient government.
Housing: Proposes to work with the Province and the Region to increase the rental housing supply, maintain the existing rental supply and add affordable ownership homes. Allowing secondary suites in existing homes will also create new housing once new by-laws that monitor the neighbourhoods are in place. Also believes the Town needs to review and update its 10-year-old Development Plan in order to process new development applications. Zoning By-laws also need to be brought into the “urban” town.

 

TORONTO

John Tory
Housing: Proposes to build 40,000 affordable rental units over 12 years. Leverage City lands, including lands surrounding TTC Stations.
Property Taxes: Keep property taxes at or below the rate of inflation. Supported City Council’s plan to implement water rate increases dedicated to improving storm and wastewater infrastructure.
Transit: Continue to build out the transit network plan – SmartTrack.

 

UXBRIDGE

Dave Barton
Growth and development: Proposes a seven-point platform, a main concern is the competing interest between farmland and “irresponsible and ill-considered development.” Wants to ensure that growth has clear collaboration with the livelihood of people who depend on the land.

 

VAUGHAN

Maurizio Bevilacqua
Taxes: Promises to keep Vaughan as one of the lowest taxed municipalities in the GTA. Focus on transit and roads to keep Vaughan moving. Working closely with government partners at all levels to ensure wise investments for new transit initiatives and improvements including the Yonge Subway, VIVANext, as well as road building and widening.
Innovation: Will transform the City of Vaughan into a hub for education, culture, sports and the arts by building the infrastructure required to achieve excellence and improve accessibility.
Other: Continue to excel in environmental stewardship. Support and attract small and large businesses to Vaughan.

 

WHITCHURCH-STOUFFVILLE

Iain Lovatt (New)
Growth: Proposes to preserve heritage that is integrated with future development. Integrating heritage built form into new developments as well as establishing Heritage Conservation Districts and site plan bylaws in heritage areas in town are identified a must.
Development: Within the first 100 days, hopes to assemble a meeting of commercial-industrial landowners to get everyone on the same page, about the 404 corridor and the servicing for the area going forward. Believes that these underserviced and underutilized lands represent about $1 billion in new tax assessment for Whitchurch-Stouffville.

 

RELATED READING

5 steps to solving the housing affordability issue in Ontario

Municipal candidates aware of housing needs – TREB poll

6 Ontario municipal elections to watch regarding housing

7 factors that will affect GTA housing in 2019 – and 5 reasons to consider buying NOW

 

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