10 Reasons why York Region should participate in the Greenbelt Review

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Tales from York is a blog series focused on the people and places that make York’s Greenbelt great. The series will cover everything from local businesses, to seasonal events, to life on York farms. Look out for our upcoming posts to stay up-to-date and informed on exciting going-ons in York's Greenbelt. 

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From March 25 to May 28, the province of Ontario is holding a Co-ordinated Review of the Greenbelt Plan, the Oak Ridges Moraine Conservation Plan, the Niagara Escarpment Plan, and the Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe. 

In preparation for the Aurora Town Hall on Monday April 13 and the Vaughan Town Hall on Tuesday May 14 we're listing the top ten reasons York Region residents should participate in the review. Get out to a Town Hall in your community and be part of the conversation about Ontario's future! 

1. Keep your air FRESH and your water CLEAN

Ensure the protection of agricultural lands, water, and natural areas. The Greenbelt's ecosystems help sustain our health and well-being and have an estimated economic value of $2.6 billion annually - that's an average of $3,487 per hectare!

2. Smart Communities

Are you happy with your surroundings? 80% of GTA residents would prefer to live in ‘location efficient’ neighbourhoods. Here’s your chance to let the province know what you think about your built environment. Remember, intensification doesn’t mean high-rises, it means walkable communities and nearby amenities.

3. Clearer and more effective land-use plans for future generations

Greenbelt? Oak Ridges Moraine? Growth Plan? Have your say on the clarity of provincial land use plans and how they impact YOU!

4. Efficient Infrastructure

Concerned about the cost of sprawl? Share your thoughts on how to make more efficient use of costly infrastructure.

5. Places to Play

Get outside! York Region has a bit of everything - from river valleys, to the shorelines of Lake Simcoe to the trails and hills of the Oak Ridges Moraine. Let’s talk about how to keep these natural wonders safe so present and future generation can experience nature.

6. Better Transit

Wish you could leave the car at home? Expansions to VIVA and TTC and GO are creating real transit options in York Region.  Share your ideas on further improvements and investments in walkable and livable communities.

7. Viable Agriculture

The Greenbelt Plan provides permanent protection for approximately 860,00 acres of fertile farmland; the GDP generated by farming in the Greenbelt and Greater Golden Horseshoe is approximately $2.26 billion annually. As home to 40% of the Holland Marsh, York hosts some of the Greenbelt’s, and indeed the province’s, most productive farmland. The Holland Marsh, one of only two specialty crop areas in the province (the other is the Niagara Tender Fruit and Grape Area) accounts for 15% of Ontario’s annual vegetable production.

Have your say on how can we make Ontario’s land use plans work even better for York Region farmers!

8. A local food system

Know where you’re food is from! Skip the plane, train, and packaging. By protecting productive farmland we secure our food system for future generations and support local economies.

9. A lasting legacy

Let’s preserve York Region’s natural beauty for our children and grandchildren. The Greenbelt links conservation areas, trails, rivers, wineries, orchards, natural heritage, and villages that form our local identity.

10. A chance to be part of the Ontario’s Future

By participating in Ontario’s Co-ordinated Land-use Review you get to have your say on the future of our natural environment, agricultural lands, and built environments.

Hope to see you there!

More information about the 2015 Co-ordinated Land Use Plan Review 

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MELISSA CORIA
--Communications and Outreach Assistant, York Region Office

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