It’s an especially busy autumn at City Hall as we prepare to adopt an updated Official Plan (OP), Infrastructure Master Plan, Transportation Master Plan (TMP), Cycling Plan and Pedestrian Plan.
Talk of official plans may make your eyes glaze over, but these documents are very important, and that’s why we revise them every five years. They contain policy directions and lists of priorities that will determine where and how your tax dollars are spent, whether a road is widened or a rail line or bike lane is built, and when critical infrastructure gets repaired or replaced.
Following six months of input from the public a councillors, we got our first view of official drafts in late September, with the TMP delayed until October. Next, Council members will formally review the plans and welcome public delegations at committee meetings at which the plans will be debated and most likely adopted, with or without changes.
Here are a few major issues directly affecting Capital Ward residents:
- Will there be changes to the OP policy direction that currently promotes intensification? Will it provide specifics on acceptable height and density, and just how much such intensification is going to be promoted around new transit stations (Transit Oriented Development)?
- Will the TMP go further to promote public transit and active transit as the most efficient and cost-effective ways of moving people and goods? If so, will any major road projects be removed from the TMP or placed on the backburner?
- Will the proposed footbridge spanning the canal between Fifth and Clegg (currently in the detailed design phase) be listed as a priority project?
- Will the Cycling Plan and Pedestrian Plan propose new routes or infrastructure for our neighbourhood, to address subpar linkages for walkers and cyclists along our main roads and bridges?