• Protecting Water and Farmland in Simcoe County

Doug Ford hasn’t learned from the Greenbelt scandal: Ontario’s housing strategy still promotes sprawl and paving over farmland

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In Blog
Jun 5th, 2024
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The consequences of two new housing laws introduced by Premier Doug Ford will remove remaining guardrails to unbridled, costly and unaffordable low-density sprawl with no guarantee that affordable homes will ever be built.

Premier Doug Ford’s housing strategy ignores calls for new housing “to be built within cities and communities — not in fields and forests — to save money, combat climate change, and facilitate rental housing in particular,” write David Crombie and Anne Golden.

The Ontario government is about to undo the protections we have for the province’s watersheds, wilderness and farmland. They’re also taking away the public’s ability to speak out — claiming it’s the only way to get affordable housing.

The government is wrong. The consequences of two new housing laws introduced by Premier Doug Ford will remove remaining guardrails to unbridled, costly, and unaffordable low-density sprawl with no guarantee that affordable homes will ever be built.

Ford’s proposed laws run contrary to the advice from his own Housing Task Force as well as the recent Blueprint for More and Better Housing prepared by public and private sector experts.

Both of these reports call for new housing to be built within cities and communities — not in fields and forests — to save money, combat climate change, and facilitate rental housing in particular.

The proposals also put the province directly at odds with the federal government’s recently announced plans to promote new housing within existing cities and communities. For the first time in decades, Ottawa has signaled clearly to Canadians that Ottawa is back in the housing business, committing $8.5 billion in new spending on dozens of programs.

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