Ontario’s Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, Steve Clark, recently announced that the Ford government will be moving the Urban Growth Centre (UGC) closer to the Burlington GO station in an effort to protect the integrity of downtown Burlington.
Last year, Burlington City Council requested that Halton Region adjust the boundary of the downtown Burlington UGC and remove the Major Transit Station Area designation from the John Street Bus Terminal, through its Municipal Comprehensive Review of the Regional Official Plan.
In March 2020, Transportation Minister Caroline Mulroney and Municipal Affairs and Housing Minister Steve Clark gave Halton the option to remove the designation of the downtown John Street bus terminal as a mobility hub and Major Transit Station Area from its Official Plan.
“Our government has been clear that transit-oriented communities are our priority,” said Clark about the adjustment of the UGC boundary.
“I am proud to support Jane McKenna, MPP Burlington by re-designating the Urban Growth Centre away from the downtown and closer to the Burlington GO station which will ensure that the downtown area is preserved. This will also ensure that people will live closer to transit so that they can spend less time commuting, and more time with their families.”
Burlington MPP Jane McKenna was for this decision, stating that the move will preserve many of downtown Burlington’s “unique features.”
“Burlington’s Urban Growth Centre and Major Transit Station Area designation have been in place for over a decade. This re-designation will put homes near transit which aligns with the policies laid out in the provincial Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe,” It will also help preserve the many incredible features that makes downtown Burlington unique,” said McKenna.
Burlington Mayor Marianne Meed Ward also expressed her excitement over the announcement.
“I am thrilled by Minister Clark’s announcement today that Burlington will be able to adjust the boundaries of our UGC and focus future high-density growth near our GO station and mass transit. The need to make this adjustment is grounded in extensive study, analysis, planning rationale and feedback and has been strongly supported by both Burlington City Council and our passionate community members,” said Meed Ward.
The decision to adjust the UGC boundary supports the work that has already been incorporated into the City of Burlington’s revised new Official Plan (OP), which has already been approved by the Halton Region.