Wetlands Under Attack

It will be no surprise to those who know me and/or read my blog that I am very disturbed by the news that wetlands are being considered as obstacles to development; and that rather than modifying a project (i.e change its location) permissions are being granted by the Province to fill them in.  It is by no means a new “crime” as they have been disappearing since the Europeans arrived and we started establishing ourselves.  I am being provocative to say it was a  crime 400 hundred years ago but I am tempeted to use the term as today we are still doing it.  I think the first new people to live in this area of Canada, do have a good excuse:  true ignorance.  Today we don’t have that excuse.

Earlier this year 3 provincially significant wetlands on agriculturally zoned land were filled in to enable construction of a Walmart distribution centre (more…)

Green Building Standards

On Nov.16 Council agenda there is a staff report presenting the final version of sustainable developement standards for approval by Council; also presented is the plan for implementing with a start date of February 2021 for all new site plan applications.  This program has been a long time in coming; first version was checklist in 2013.  Since then there has been changes in expectations and recognition of the need for such; and, there has been significant consultation with various stakeholders and experts.  As a member of the Sustainability Committee when the first version was launched I am very happy to see this.  It looks very comprehensive and is appropriately complex but structured and organized well.  I do have a couple significant questions.  First, as I read it, there is a minimum which must be achieved in order to get approval of a site plan.  The question is whether a proponent can appeal our refusal to approve.  Second, how do our standards compare to current Building Code in Ontario?

Traffic Calming Strategy

On Council agenda there is staff report recommending approval of the traffic calming strategy.  This has been a long time in process; but, we have ended up with a robust program utilizing feedback from the community.  It makes a lot of sense to me that there are 3 streams of initiatives.  1st there is the community; good example of that is implementation of a consistent speed limit (40 km) throughout the 3 villages.  Second, there are the measure taken in response to requests for an intervention by individuals or a neighbourhood.  Third, there are measures to be incorporated into the capital program.  (e.g. If a road is to be paved, is there traffic calming opportunity.)  The strategy for traffic calming is here.  And here are the new forms for requests for traffic calming and the petition to be used.

COVID-19: impact in King

As evident from provincial and local numbers we are not doing very well in terms of “flattening the curve” of those with COVID-19.  This is worrisome.  And its frustrating as the specifics as to what is restricted or not changes frequently.  To stay current with the restrictions in King be sure to check in at the COVID info hub frequently.   There are many restrictions but the Township continues to be open for business;  most of staff are working remotely and some in-person service is available; for details see the COVID info hub.  And if anyone doubts that business is going on I suggest you have a look at the Council agenda for November 16; there are a number of important reports.

Rental Apartments on Keele

On Council Nov. 16 agenda there is a staff report on the project to construct a mixed use 4 storey building on west side of Keele across from the Church.  I have expressed previouslyKing Station’s Development on Keele my enthusiasm for the initiative because of what it delivers:  rental apartments in the core of King City with commercial space at ground level as this form of housing is very much needed.  I am pleased at the design proposal in that the quality is high and the aesthetic respects King City’s heritage as outlined in the urban design guidelines for the village. Not surprisingly the developer, King Station, has had challenges with this brownfield site; but as reviewed in the report solutions and accomodations have been found.  I think the use of the funds from cash-in-lieu of parking spaces to enable enhanced access to the municipal parking facilities on Doctors Lane is excellent; the potential of such an initiative alleviating the existing challenges of safe parking on Keele was identified in the parking study done in 2018.  I am pleased to see re-application of the idea of including some sustainable features in the zoning bylaw as was done recently in the Zancor condo development.  As reviewed in the report there are important issues yet to be resolved in terms of the final design (e.g. inclusion of more green design elements) which will be addressed when the site plan is done.  I do have some questions for Staff when we meet on Monday but overall I am very pleased that we are at this stage.

As has been Township practice since COVID you can observe live stream at http://meeting.king.ca; and if you want to submit comments or register to make a deputation, contact [email protected] do so by noon Nov. 16.

Miscellaneous Fees and Charges

On the Council agendae over the next three months there are several meeetings for various budget-type items:   miscellaneous fees & charges, water and wastewater, budgets & business plans.  In some instances there will be bylaws for approval to execute the Council decisions.  Here is the notice of meetings covering all of these items.  Below are the specifics for miscellaneous fees.

Monday December 14, 2020 the miscellaneous fees and charges will be presented at Council

Monday January 11, 2021 the miscellaneous fees and charges will be presented for adoption by Council and for approval of Bylaw.

As has been Township practice since COVID you can observe live stream at http://meeting.king.ca; and if you want to submit comments or register to make a deputation, for the February 8 and 22 meetings,  contact [email protected] do so by noon the day of the meeting.