After 12-year battle, work to begin on Midhurst subdivision
David Strachan’s song, the Special Rule, summarized how wrong it is to allow this development to go ahead.
By Cheryl Browne Barrie Advance
In this David and Goliath story, David threw a dozen rocks, but couldn’t knock the giant down.
David Strachan, treasurer of the Midhurst Ratepayers Association, who fought against the Geranium company’s plans to build two large subdivisions in the small village 10-minutes north of Barrie, is still bitter.
“If we’d have thrown lots of money at it in the first place, we might have stood a chance,” Strachan said after news of the bulldozers arriving on-site at the Carson Road subdivision was released last week.
But after fighting the good fight and raising more than $250,000 for legal fees and professional planners to oppose 2,500 new homes in their neighbourhood, Strachan and company realized their 12-year battle is over.
In 2008, the initial plan for the Midhurst Carson Road development was approved by the township and later by the Ontario Municipal Board, the County of Simcoe, Nottawasaga Valley Conservation Authority, and several provincial agencies in 2014.
It took five more years for the environmental assessment to be approved by the ministry of the environment, conservation and parks in 2019. Water and storm water management work was approved in 2020.
Geranium bulletin on Springwater website
The plan for the Midhurst Carson Road development was first approved by the Township in 2008. The subdivision plans were approved by the Ontario Municipal Board in 2014 by settlement with the Township of Springwater, the County of Simcoe, Nottawasaga Valley Conservation Authority and all Provincial agencies. The Municipal Class Environmental Assessment for external infrastructure was approved by the Ministry of Environment, Conservation and Parks in November 2019 and the Midhurst Comprehensive Stormwater Management Plan was approved by the Township and Nottawasga Valley Conservation Authority in June 2020.
On December 21st, 2020, Springwater Council granted permission for Phase 1A site servicing to commence as well as tree clearing and site alteration for the utility campus. The site servicing is the next step in preparing the site for development and home construction. This phase involves the installation of services which includes the watermain, sanitary sewers, storm sewers, and the stormwater management pond for Phase 1A as well as commencement of the construction of the Sales Centre near the North West corner of Carson Road and Anne identified in the below figure. Tree clearing and Site alterations will also commence on the treatment facility lands / utility campus (located on the North side of Snow Valley Road, East of Wilson Drive). A copy of the Council resolution granting permission can be found on the Township website at www.springwater.ca.
The site servicing is anticipated to be completed in late summer, in accordance with the approved Engineering reports and drawings filed with the Township of Springwater and the Nottawasaga Valley Conservation Authority and accepted by their professional internal and external peer review teams, which includes ecologists, civil engineers, water resources engineers, planners and other experts.
Professional engineers and geoscientists will continue to monitor the site including the erosion and sediment control fencing around the site, and ensure that the servicing proceeds in accordance with the approved drawings and regulations. Site access will be from Carson Road by means of the existing gravel surface roadways and farm roads within the property.
In accordance with Township policy, Township staff in conjunction with the Township Engineer will oversee and monitor the construction of the works to ensure compliance with the engineering drawings and specifications, including environmental regulations and agency approvals.