It’s Monday, March 20th and members of the development industry are at Queen’s Park trying to convince the Premier and her Cabinet to go ahead with proposed changes to the Greenbelt Plan and Growth Plan that would allow urban sprawl in and around the Greenbelt, forever harming the precious agricultural lands and natural areas that need Greenbelt protection.
We cannot let this happen.
That is why TEA has just launched a new letter writing campaign - as part of a larger effort organized through the Ontario Greenbelt Alliance - to tell the Premier not to give into pressure from the development industry.
We do not have the financial resources that the development industry has. But each of us has a voice and we want to ensure your voice joins with tens of thousands of others to let the Premier know she should stand strong against those in the development industry who want to harm the Greenbelt.
We do not have the financial resources that the development industry has.
But each of us has a voice and together we can show the Premier she should stand strong against those in the development industry who want to harm the Greenbelt.
That’s why we are urging you to send a letter right now. If you are reading this after March 20, don’t worry. Send your letter now. We need to make sure as many TEA supporters as possible communicate with the Premier before she decides the fate of the Greenbelt before the summer.
What is at Stake
Some time this Spring, the Premier and her Cabinet will make changes to the Growth Plan and Greenbelt Plan. Right now they are considering proposed changes that would allow developers to pave over these precious lands and put big, expensive houses on big lots, effectively legalizing urban sprawl in and around the Greenbelt.
Many in the development industry link high housing prices to a lack of housing supply. They blame a lack of supply to not enough land being available because of the Growth and Greenbelt Plans which protect agricultural and natural spaces from sprawl-style development. That’s why they want the Premier to support changes to these plans that would open up large swaths of land in and around the Greenbelt to urban sprawl.
But opening up land in and around the Greenbelt to urban sprawl will do nothing to bring down housing prices. The fact is that more than enough land is already available for development: over 100,000 hectares is available today for development in the Greater Golden Horseshoe. That’s the size of all of Toronto and Mississauga combined.
The development industry wants access to Greenbelt land because they know they can charge more for homes built on these beautiful lands. They want to build large homes for people who can afford expensive homes and who can live out in the country. And even if they were to build affordable homes on these lands, families would be stuck far away from jobs, community services and transit.
The Province introduced the Greenbelt Plan and Growth Plan to curb urban sprawl and protect precious agricultural lands and natural areas. It’s clear some in the development industry have decided they don’t want to make a profit in a way that also helps the environment.