Neptis Commentary on the Draft Greenbelt Plan

The Ontario government has launched a series of important initiatives intended to improve the pattern of urban development and protect farmland and natural heritage features in the Toronto Metropolitan Region. These legislative reforms and changes in provincial planning policy — of which the proposed Greenbelt is one — have the potential to contribute greatly to the region’s economic, social, and environmental health. Responding to the government’s call for comments on its proposed Greenbelt Plan, the Neptis Foundation has reviewed the plan in light of research it has commissioned on the implications of “business-as-usual” development patterns, greenlands in the region and their degree of protection, agriculture in the region, development pressures in Simcoe County, and growth management initiatives in other urban regions. Based on the observations and conclusions of this research, and on further consultations with the researchers themselves, the Foundation offers the following commentary on the proposed Greenbelt Plan.