- New Study Shows No Need to Encroach on the Greenbelt -
TORONTO, June 29, 2011 /CNW/ - Developers, planners and environmentalists can all wave their
"whitebelt" flag. A new study shows that the area between the Greenbelt
and urban growth boundaries, nicknamed the "whitebelt", contains enough
land to accommodate development for several generations.
In fact, expansion plans for the next 20 years in the regions of Durham,
York, Peel, Halton, and the City of Hamilton only allow use of
approximately 17 per cent of the "whitebelt" for development. This
leaves nearly 83 per cent of the "whitebelt", or 120,000 acres of land,
untouched until 2031 providing decades of land for housing, industrial
and commercial development.
"Some developers claim there isn't enough land for development, but this
study makes it clear there is enough land within the "whitebelt" far
into the future," said Burkhard Mausberg, President of the Friends of
the Greenbelt Foundation. "This is a win, win situation for both
developers and environmentalists, and there should be no pressure for
urban expansion into the Greenbelt."
The study indicates that there is no evidence that the Greenbelt has
caused so-called "leap frog" development, that is, growth of
communities north and west of the Greenbelt to accommodate people who
might have otherwise settled in communities along the Lake Ontario
As the Greenbelt Plan and Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe
work in tandem, the study authors, Ray Tomalty and Bartek Komorowski of
Smart Cities Research Services, provide suggestions to ensure effective
implementation of the Growth Plan's vision and principles.
Recommendations include ways of supporting the development of compact
and transit oriented communities with a variety of housing types.
About the report, Inside and Out: Sustaining Ontario's Greenbelt:
Funded by the Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation and prepared by Smart
Cities Research Services, the report documents qualitative research
conducted in 2010 about growth related issues that affect Ontario's
Greenbelt. The study involved analysis of secondary sources and more
than 30 semi-structured interviews with a range of government,
development industry, and non-government stakeholders. For copies of
the report please visit www.greenbelt.ca/research or call (416) 960-0001, ext. 309.
About Ontario's Greenbelt and the Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation
Ontario's Greenbelt is an example of a vibrant multi-use greenbelt that
protects significant agricultural and environmentally sensitive lands
from development. Underpinned by one of the strongest legal frameworks
and impressive political commitment, it provides diverse economic,
environmental and social benefits to Ontarians. The Greenbelt is 1.8
million acres of potential to make Ontario a better place. The
Greenbelt Foundation began in 2005 with a mandate to promote and
sustain our Greenbelt as a permanent feature. www.greenbelt.ca
SOURCE Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation
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