Opinion

Caledon’s Choice Overturned

Overturned Chess Pieces
Written by Patti Foley

On December 8th Peel Regional Council voted to overturn a made-and-approved-in-Caledon choice regarding where Bolton’s next round of residential growth should occur.

Mayor Allan Thompson said “I stood for the Caledon option along with Caledon Regional Councillor’s Downey, Innis and Shaughnessy, Brampton Regional Councillor’s Gibson, Miles, Moore and Sprovieri, and Mississauga Regional Councillor’s McFadden, Ras and Tovey. These individuals are among the brightest and most straightforward that I have ever known. They have an incredible amount of integrity and I thank them for their support.”

Meanwhile Caledon Ward 3 & 4 Regional Councillor Jennifer Innis, whose ward 4 will be home to the next round of growth,  expressed her frustrations as follows…

Today Regional Council approved Regional Official Plan Amendment 30; the Bolton Residential Expansion. Regional Council rejected the Town of Caledon’s submission in support of Option 3 lands and chose Option 6.

As I was not afforded the opportunity to speak in support of the Town’s position and that of the majority of residents I represented I wanted to share my thoughts on both options, which I have done below.

I am most certain that this matter will find itself before the Ontario Municipal Board and I would like to thank the residents and businesses of Caledon who have contributed to this process. Over my years of martial arts training I have learned that for every move there is a counter. I want to assure my residents that I will continue to counter every move that is directed at suppressing the will of our residents to plan the future of our community.

As you all know, I support Option 3.

I support it because it is selected based on numerous studies that were specifically undertaken by the Town to meet the requirements of a Municipal Comprehensive Review for settlement area boundary expansion.
I support it because it was deemed appropriate by Malone Given Parsons planning consultants who were retained by the Region to conduct an independent review of Caledon’s Municipal Comprehensive Review process.
I support it because it was endorsed by the Town of Caledon Council, and the Planning Act requires all of us around this table to have regard to “any decision that is made by a municipal council” (Planning Act section 2.1).
I support it because it is a “supportable” concluded by the Region’s own consultants from Planning Partnership.
I support it because it is adjacent to a future GO rail station identified by Metrolinx, and it will allow the Town to plan for a transit supportive community. GO rail service between Union Station and Bolton is officially identified in Metrolinx Regional Transportation Plan, which remain in effect at the moment.

As you also know, I do not support Option 6.

I do not support it because Ministry of Municipal Affairs staff have made it clear in their comment letter that the lands within the GTA West Corridor Study Area should not be considered in this ROPA. All of Option 6 lands is within the GTA West Corridor Study Area.
I do not support it because the lands along the GTA West Corridor are best for employment uses. Like the QEW through Oakville and Burlington and Highway 407 through Vaughan and Richmond Hill, the GTA West Corridor will bring a lot of jobs to our area, which will help the Region and the Town to build a viable commercial and industrial tax base.
I believe that I have previously expressed the thoughts and concerns of the residents and businesses of Wards 3 & 4, who have been part of this process for over 10 years and who will be impacted the most by today’s decision. My decision to support Option 3 is based on facts, sound planning justification, and fiscal accountability for all residents of Peel Region. The future residents of Peel deserve no less.

About the author

Patti Foley

Having spent 25 years in Bolton, Patti remains an advocate for Caledon. As a former Regional Councillor and a long-time community volunteer she is passionate about communicating information about its issues, news, events, people, non-profits and businesses.

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