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New Official Plan public consultation underway; make your voice heard

Mobility Hub meetings May 10, 13, 18

Burlington is rewriting its Official Plan which sets the vision for growth, development and land use in the city. Where should we intensify? Where shouldn’t we? How do we protect heritage, greenspace, the waterfront, stable neighbourhoods, community character, employment lands, and more?

These will all be established during the review process and written into the new Plan. Public consultation is underway now, with the updated plan expected to come back to council for approval in the fall.

For more information visit the project page here:

New Official Plan Project

Highlights of the draft new Official Plan are below.

Part of the Official Plan review includes reviewing Mobility Hubs in the city. There are four, including two in Ward 2: the Burlington GO station on Fairview, and downtown Burlington.The other two mobility hubs are at Aldershot GO and Appleby GO. Specialized plans are being developed for each of these areas.

Staff are particularly interested in what residents want more of, or less of, in mobility hubs.

I invite residents to attend any or all of the Mobility Hub sessions below. The first Downtown Mobility Hub session was held April 20. Don’t worry if you missed it: information is available online here, including links to the presentation at the event: Mobility Hubs

Burlington GO Vision Consultation

Wednesday, May 10th
Holiday Inn, Harvester Room, 3063 South Service Rd.

Downtown Mobility Hub Land Use Concepts Public Open House

Please join us for our second meeting on the Downtown Mobility Hub to provide your feedback on some land use concepts for the Downtown developed using your input to date as well as preliminary findings from our technical review and background studies.

Wednesday, June 21st
Art Gallery of Burlington, Rotary Lakeshore Room, 1333 Lakeshore Rd W.

Aldershot GO Vision Consultation (& Presentation on the New Official Plan)

Saturday, May 13
East Plains United Church, 375 Plains Rd East, Upper Hall

Appleby GO Vision Consultation

Thursday, May 18th
Appleby Arena, 1201 Appleby Line

Highlights of the draft new Official Plan are below:

  1. Updates the community vision and guiding principles to align with the 2016 Strategic Plan;
  2. Reaffirms the commitment to maintain a firm urban boundary;
  3. Introduces a new Urban Structure and Growth Framework to direct growth to the right parts of the city, and to prioritize growth around our Mobility Hubs. Mobility Hubs include the downtown and the lands within a short walking distance of our three GO Stations;
  4. Protects established residential neighbourhoods by directing growth to other areas of the city;
  5. Highlights the importance of employment by supporting the retention of employment lands, supporting innovation and supporting employment intensification;
  6. Improves integration of land use and transportation planning, and introduces a Frequent Transit Network to service Burlington’s growth areas;
  7. Updates policies and land use designations to better support mixed use development in our intensification areas;
  8. Puts a strong emphasis on design excellence and great public spaces;
  9. Includes direction to protect and strengthen our rural area, by supporting the viability of farming through an agriculture system, and the protection and enhancement of the natural environment;
  10. Introduces a city-wide Natural Heritage System, and improved policies to support environmental sustainability; and
  11. Emphasizes the important role of public participation, and includes updates to other implementation matters.

My Take:

The Official Plan sets the direction for growth and land use and as such represents one of the most important documents in the city. The stronger our Official Plan, and the more specific we can be regarding where growth should be, and where it shouldn’t be, the better able we will be to defend our plan from challenges at the Ontario Municipal Board. Residents have said you want to be in charge of the vision for our city, not simply reacting to applications that come forward. This is our chance as a community to set the growth and land use direction for the future. I urge everyone to get involved, read the plan and provide your input.

Written by Marianne Meed Ward

A Better Burlington began in 2006 after my neighbours said they felt left out of city decisions, learning about them only after they’d been made.

As journalist for 22 years, I thought “I can do something about that” and a website and newsletter were born. They’ve taken various forms and names over the years, but the intent remains: To let you know what’s happening at City Hall before decisions are made, so you can influence outcomes for A Better Burlington.

The best decisions are made when elected representatives tap the wisdom of our community members, and welcome many different perspectives.This site allows residents to comment and debate with each other; our Commenting Guidelines established in 2016 aim to keep debate respectful.

Got an idea or comment you want to share privately? Please, get in touch:

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  1. What percentage of the budget has been allocated to the stripping out of the artificial turf in City View Park? That toxic material only has a shelf life of 5-8 years (max), before the plastic starts breaking up & leeching into the land /water systems. It also, by law, has to be disposed at a ‘hazardous waste facility’. ( An added expense there too.) What new measures are being taken to replace the fake grass with natural turf & to also remove the plastic-protecting fences? Isnt it high time this now dated PAN AM ‘soccer facility’ was turned back into the designated UNESCO Biosphere ‘public park’ it was originally intended to be ~ so that EVERYONE in Burlington has access to the multi-use natural turf playing fields instead of one ‘favored’ downtown-based soccer club? ~ As it stands, Burlington has the international distinction of being the only municipality in the world to put plastic grass in a Biosphere. Well done! ~ Oh, and WHERE is the so-called Bruce Trail ‘improvements’ in that parkland area? They were slated for ‘development’ long before Pan Am came to town. ~ Update welcome. Thanks.

What's your take?

Elgin promenade public meeting May 16, 7:30pm, AGB

Save the Date! Free “Chat ‘n Chew” Community BBQ Fri. June 9, Lion’s Club Park