Oakville mayor vows to push back on plans for urban sprawl
Oakville Mayor Rob Burton believes there is enough support from politicians across Halton Region to stop plans to bulldoze and build on agricultural land and greenspace.
Following a Halton Region workshop on Wednesday, Burton said he now plans to fight urban expansion through a motion he will present at the next Regional council meeting on Feb. 16.
His motion will go against plans to carve out greenspace in Milton and Halton Hills to accommodate future population needs such as housing and industry.
“I don’t think there’s unanimous support for (urban) expansion,” said Burton.
The Oakville mayor suggests there are other ways to deal with growth and land needs without expanding urban areas. He wants Halton Region to explore those alternative options.
Wednesday’s workshop included a presentation by Halton Regional Staff to explain the current growth plans and the methods the Ontario government requires to bring local growth strategies in line with provincial policies.
Burton said, within reasonable limits, there is enough flexibility in the province’s rules to allow a municipality to achieve its own goals in its own official plan.
“There’s a little bit of flexibility in this process within some kind of reasonable bounds, you can design your planning area, in this case the Region of Halton, in a way that it won’t look identical to another one,” he said at the Regional Council workshop.
Burton said staff planners agreed in response to his question and that the Region of Halton can achieve the goals its own way.
The provincial governments wants regional governments across Ontario to come with plans to address growth by July 1 of this year.
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