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February 01, 2005

New provincial policy statement takes effect March 1 Planning act now requires decisions

A new Provincial Policy Statement takes effect March 1, 2005, replacing the 1996 PPS. Changes to the Planning Act require all planning decisions to "be consistent with" the new policy statement.

Some highlights of the new Provincial Policy Statement are:

  • greater emphasis on managing and directing land use development through intensification, redevelopment including brownfield sites and designated growth areas
  • recognition of alternative and renewable energy systems as a tool for long term economic prosperity and incorporation of a policy to permit them in settlement areas, rural areas and prime agricultural areas
  • more detailed policies on water quality and quantity
  • greater restrictions on lot creation in prime agricultural areas and on development outside of existing settlement areas.

GREENBELT ACT AND PLAN RELEASED

The Greenbelt Act, 2005 came into force on February 24, 2005, retroactive to December 16, 2004. The Greenbelt Plan and maps were published on February 28, 2005. According to Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty, the plan will "permanently protect more than one million acres in the Golder Horseshoe from urban sprawl". The Greenbelt Plan maps are available at www.mah.gov.on.ca. For the February 28th government Backgrounder on planning initiatives click www.premier.gov.on.ca.

For legal advice on how new land use planning legislation and policies will affect your business or municipality, call Virginia MacLean (416-862-4848) or Doug Petrie (416-862-4835).