Growth plan has Halton's population increasing to 1 million by 2041

Posted in the Georgetown Forum

Milton

Hawkesbury, Canada

#1 Jun 24, 2013
The Ministry of Infrastructure recently released amendments to Ontario’s growth plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe area, updating existing population and employment forecasts and extending the plan from 2031 to 2041.

Jobs in Halton are expected to grow to 470,000 by 2041.

Existing population and employment forecasts for 2031 have been revised to show the population growing by an additional 40,000 to 820,000, with jobs remaining at 390,000.

Halton Regional staff distributed a memo to regional council earlier this week, explaining how the changes, which came into effect Monday, impact Halton and its municipalities.

The memo states the amended growth plan — which aims to help municipalities better plan and manage growth in the region in a sustainable way — took some of the recommendations made by the Halton Area Planning Partnership (HAPP), a group comprised of planning directors from each of Halton’s municipalities.

The revised forecasts, for instance, will not impact the Ontario Municipal Board hearings where Halton Region’s official plan is being challenged in 41 separate appeals.

The original 2031 forecasts that are listed in the official plan currently are in force and effect until the Region updates it. The Ministry of Infrastructure is giving the Region until June 17, 2018 to have its official plan conform to the revised growth plan.

Earlier this year, the Region told the province that amending the growth plan would be premature.

It suggested the province await the release of Statistics Canada’s 2011 census data in its entirety to more accurately identify the demographic trends that underlie the population and employment forecasts.

Among other suggestions that were supplied to the Ministry of Infrastructure during the plans consultation phase, but weren’t adopted were:

• having the province direct more funding for growth related infrastructure costs, especially in a place like Halton where there is significant pressure to expand.

• having the Development Charges Act that was created in 1997 updated so that municipalities have the tools to raise revenues for capital planning and projects related to accommodating growth.

For more information on the growth plan visit www.placestogrow.ca .

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