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T.O.’s Greenbelt dream

By Enzo Di Matteo

The Humber and Don part of Ontario’s Greenbelt?

It makes green sense.

Both rivers originate on land protected by the province’s Greenbelt.

It would seem natural to extend those boundaries downstream, says  Franz Hartmann, executive director of the Toronto Environmental Alliance.

TEA, Environmental Defence and the Ontario Greenbelt Alliance have joined forces behind Parks and Environment Committee member Councillor Paula Fletcher in the cause.

Hartmann says he expects the committee to endorse the idea at today’s scheduled meeting (Thursday, October 15).

The power to make the designation, though, rests with the province, whose agreement is a trickier proposition.

What would a Greenbelt designation mean, for example, for development proposals currently under way    on provincial land at the mouth of the Don, where an athletes’ village to support the Pan-Am Games bid has been pencilled in?

Fletcher’s not sure. She’s asked the city’s general manager of parks, forestry and recreation and the chief city planner to report back in January on the “feasibility and implications” of a Greenbelt designation for the Humber and Don.

But she loves the idea. “It would certainly build on the protections we have already put in place to encourage an ecosystem-wide approach to these important greenways,” says Fletcher.  

enzom@nowtoronto.com

NOW | October 14-21, 2009 | VOL 29 NO 7

As published: http://www.nowtoronto.com/news/story.cfm?content=171765

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