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Waterloo region seeks public input on long-term master plan

The Region of Waterloo's administration building in Kitchener.
The Region of Waterloo's administration building in Kitchener. Nick Westoll / File / Global News

Ever thought about what life might be like in Waterloo region in 22 years?

If you answered yes, the region is looking to speak to you.

The region announced Wednesday that it was looking for public input on its plan for now until 2041.

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“We’re building on the success of the current plan that made intensification a priority, to protect our urban and rural countryside line preventing urban sprawl,” Tom Galloway, chair of the region’s planning and works committee, said in a statement.

“We’ve heard from residents in the past that protecting the environment, water and employment land are also important, now we want to get their ideas going forward.”

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The region is currently reviewing its official plan and is looking for public input on how to shape it. It says it will host a series of public meetings over the coming months.

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It will also turn to the engagement site (engagewr.ca) that has been used by the region and municipalities over the past couple of years to gather public input.

It is looking to gather opinion on subjects such as housing, transportation, agriculture, conservation, communities and employment.

“We want to know how people see Waterloo region 20 years from now,” said Rod Regier, the region’s commissioner of planning, development and legislative service.

“How do we live? How are we getting around? Where do we work and go to school, and what kind of communities do we want to spend time in with family and friends?”

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The region’s plan is designed to be updated every 10 years on the ones.

“Our current plan and land budget are designed to support growth through 2031,” Regier told Global News. “The next ROP (Regional Official Plan) will push that out 10 years.

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“The sequence of 2021, 31, 41 is derived from the census schedule which anchors our forecasts and allows us to check them in the future.”