must be larger to make urban sprawl smaller
must recommend enlarged Study Area and stop highways
Release: May 12th, 2004 - Toronto) As the government’s Greenbelt
Taskforce prepares to initiate a public consultation process for
the Golden Horseshoe, Earthroots says that the Province must expand
its study area to include surrounding regions such as “South
Simcoe” including Barrie and Kitchener-Waterloo.
we applaud the McGuinty government’s commitment to creating
a Greenbelt around the GTA, we believe that the current Greenbelt
study area must be expanded to achieve the Province’s goals
of reducing sprawl in southern Ontario”, said Josh Matlow,
Earthroots Campaign Director. Earthroots has concerns that the
current Greenbelt Study Area may unintentionally promote unbridled
suggests that the Province increase the Greenbelt study area to
resemble the Central Ontario Smart Growth Zone and create programs,
along with a trust fund, to support easements for farmers and
new revenue for municipalities.
government should truly balance growth demands with a focus on
transit and the environment. This plan must also ensure that farmers
and municipalities receive the support they need for it to be
successful”, said Matlow.
suggests that the Ontario government:
wilderness and water connections and migration corridors between
Lake Simcoe and Lake Ontario throughout the region’s parks
and rivers. This will better protect our region’s natural
systems and wildlife habitat.
and make more efficient the GO transit network for southern Ontario
between Toronto, St.Catharines, Barrie, and Kitchener-Waterloo
which connects to a larger network including Ottawa and Windsor
functional incentive programs supporting farmers in the Study
Area including consideration of establishing a trust to provide
farmers with financial compensation when needed. Between 1976
and 1996 the GTA lost 150,000 acres of prime farmland to urban
sprawl (an area almost the size of the City of Toronto).
incentive financial programs for municipalities, such as a share
of the provincial gas tax, so that they do not rely so much on
promoting sprawl in order to collect additional revenues from
the construction of new highways through the Greenbelt Study Area
initiated by the previous government. New highways may not be
houses but they are certainly another form of development. These
highways directly contribute to environmental degradation while
providing key infrastructure for future sprawling development.
extension which is already encouraging leapfrog development north
of the current Greenbelt Study Area in Alliston, Beeton, Bond
Head, and Barrie
Penninsula which might impact the Niagara Escarpment and encourage
sprawl onto the Fruit Belt
Northwards extension which promotes urban sprawl north of Newmarket
Hill Expressway which will redirect creeks and blow the largest
hole into the face of the Niagara Escarpment ever seen.
platform states that his government will protect 600,000 acres
of green space within the proposed Greenbelt and another million
acres around surrounding communities. Increasing the size of the
current Greenbelt Study Area will achieve the fulfillment of this
Taskforce’s vision must go further than the current Greenbelt
study area”, said Matlow, “their vision should extend
beyond the short-term and piecemeal solutions of the past and
offer Ontarians a clear picture of what our province will look
like one hundred years into the future”.
For more information,
Earthroots Campaign Director at (416) 599-0152 ext.14, (416) 809-5674