Advertisement

Mega rally held in Hamilton to stop development in the Greenbelt

A rally was held in Hamilton against building homes in the Greenbelt.
A rally was held in Hamilton against building homes in the Greenbelt.

Hundreds of people took to the forecourt at Hamilton City Hall on Sunday afternoon to rally against a provincial law that aims to take 7,400 acres of land out of the Greenbelt.

Bill 23 – the Build More Homes Faster Act – allows development on previously protected lands, with the stated aim of building more homes in the province.

Read more: Ontario won’t allow homes to be built on floodplains, Ford says after fed warning

Read next: Former NFL player Jessie Lemonier dead at 25

Burlington Mayor Marianne Meed-Ward disagrees with the bill.

“It’s really a subsidy for developers and investors and there is nothing in the bill that will guarantee that first-time homebuyers will get those savings; they won’t,” she said.

She says she believes that rallies can make a difference and get Ontario Premier Doug Ford to change his mind.

Story continues below advertisement
Mega rally held in Hamilton to stop development in the Greenbelt - image

“This government has shown that if we make a good case and raise our voices that they will rethink it. I am an optimist and I hope they will see that this is not how we’re going to get more affordable housing and more supply.”

Meed-Ward was one of the politicians that were on hand for the Hands Off The Greenbelt rally that was hoping to get Ford’s attention.

Mega rally held in Hamilton to stop development in the Greenbelt - image

Hamilton Ward 2 City Councillor Cameron Kroetsch spoke to the crowd beside fellow city councillors Maureen Wilson, Alex Wilson, Craig Cassar, Tammy Hwang, John-Paul Danko, Nrinder Nann and Mark Tadeson.

Story continues below advertisement

“I have a message for Doug Ford – if he wants to come here and take a bite of the Greenbelt… this ‘creature of the province’ is going to bite back,” Kroetsch said.

Mayor Andrea Horwath was not in attendance during the rally.

NDP MP for Hamilton Centre Matthew Green was there and commented on the size of the crowd.

Mega rally held in Hamilton to stop development in the Greenbelt - image

“I think what you’re seeing is a growing discontent among Ontarians who feel like they’ve been lied to, who feel like they’ve been sold out to corporate developers and donors of Doug Ford, and they’ve had enough,” Green said.

There are some media reports that suggest that progressive donors have the most to gain from opening up the Greenbelt, but those claims have yet to be substantiated.

Story continues below advertisement

Sunday’s rally was by far the largest such rally since groups started gathering at city hall to protest Bill 23. It was one of dozens held across the province over the weekend.

Sponsored content