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Irresponsible Actions by Downtown City Councillors will only add to Toronto’s Housing Affordability and Supply Problems

/EIN News/ --

Toronto, July 18, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) --

The Building Industry and Land Development Association (BILD) is outraged by the announcement made today by City of Toronto councillors Joe Cressy, Mike Layton and Kristyn Wong-Tam. The trio said that they would red light any development that supports council approved TO Core Plan, ignoring the direction given by the Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing’s approved plans. These actions are a clear example of political interference that slows the development of new housing and increases costs.

“This blatant disregard of provincial policy is the opposite of a housing strategy, in fact, it’s an anti-housing strategy,” said Dave Wilkes, President and CEO of BILD. “The net impact will add cost to the City, add cost to new home purchasers, increase the delays of much needed livable housing close to transit and lengthen approvals times as challenges and appeals are undertaken to ensure that the law is respected,” added Wilkes.

It was the City of Toronto’s decision to file the Official Plan Amendment for TO Core with the province under Section 26 of the Planning Act. This rarely used mechanism requires ministerial approval and is non-appealable. Disliking the results of this decision, the councillor’s statements to developers that they will de-prioritize projects that are in accordance with the Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing’s decision and not the City’s version of the plan is like asking them to take sides in schoolyard spat. Councillors Cressy, Layton and Wong-Tam are disregarding the planning process, abdicating their responsibility and adopting planning by threat.   

“The decisions to amend the official plans just prior to the last election was politically motivated and went against the recommendations of the City’s own planning staff,” said Wilkes.

“More housing is desperately needed to accommodate growth in the region. It makes sense for this type of housing to be built in places that can leverage existing investments in infrastructure and be transit-supportive. We are calling on Toronto City Council to take the necessary steps to address housing supply and affordability in Toronto.”

The provincial government rightly recognizes that changes are desperately needed to provide adequate and affordable housing to a growing province. 115,000 new residents are expected in the GTA every year through 2041 and the population is set to grow by 40 per cent. Meeting this generation challenge will require policies that enable housing supply and affordability, not illegal actions that add cost, delays and restrict supply.

With 1,500 member companies, BILD is the voice of the home building, land development and professional renovation industry in the Greater Toronto Area. The building and renovation industry provides $33 billion in investment value and employs 271,000 people in the region. BILD is proudly affiliated with the Ontario and Canadian Home Builders' Associations.

  

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For additional information or to schedule an interview, contact John Provenzano, BILD Communications and Media Relations Manager, at JProvenzano@bildgta.ca, (416) 617-7994.

John Provenzano
                    Building Industry and Land Development Association (BILD)
                    4166443912
                    jprovenzano@bildgta.ca
                    
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