Environmentalists and members of the agricultural community are among those voicing frustration with a plan to accommodate Hamilton’s required growth over the next three decades.
Provincial targets call for the city’s population to soar to 820,000, an increase of 238,000 residents, by 2051.
City councillors have been told that will require further residential intensification, as well as an urban boundary expansion.
Environment Hamilton’s Lynda Lukasik says the provincial government is enabling a “land grab,” while Hamilton 350’s Don McLean tells councillors they are “being forced to do Doug Ford’s bidding.”
McLean says the plan is foolish and does not take climate change into account.
The updated growth plan could mean opening to development as much as 2,200 hectares of so-called “white belt” land, between the greenbelt and the current urban boundary.
Drew Spoelstra, a Binbrook-area farmer and vice-president of the Ontario Federation of Agriculture,
is calling for a “fixed urban boundary to protect all the prime agricultural land that’s available on that list, and there’s a lot of it.”
In addition to the population increase, Hamilton’s growth plan calls for 360,000 jobs by 2051, an increase of 122,000.