Still waiting for Town on action plan based on Lesson’s Learned!

July 24, 2015 at 10:24 am

A number of residents, Town officials and Marianneville representatives attended the Lesson’s Learned workshop style meeting on June 23rd.  It was nice to see former Ward 7 Councillor, Chris Emanuel attend and contribute several thoughts.  The same can be said for members of the GPA and Gordon Prentice of Shrink Slessor Square fame  (click here for his specific comments).  It was also appreciated to see most of Town Council attend and many senior people from Town Staff including the increasingly reddened face of Richard Nethery who had been AWOL for much of the Glenway OMB Hearing process.

While everyone had an opportunity to provide suggestions based on “What if we had an opportunity to roll-back the clock…” we don’t yet know when the Town will act to either:

  • Publish the report and action plan  –  OR –
  • Discuss the report in a public Town Council meeting and possible actions before formalizing them

What we do know is that the Town appointed Facilitator, Glenn Pothier has given his finding to the Town and the Town has accepted them with no changes requested.  The earliest we could see the Town “officially receive and accepted/approved the findings would be in August, but more then likely in September.

While there are many points to remember that the Town should address one major Lesson Learned should be “better communications”.   This comes in the form of specfic direction, regular reporting (issues management) and the timeliness and detail to questions asked.

  • Between Town Council and Staff
  • Between Town Council and Residents
  • Between Developers and Town Staff

It seems all parties wanted better claity and timliness of needed answers to support better decision making.  Let’s see what actually happens in September – the most likely time for Lesson’s Learned actions to be announced by the Town Council.

Town answers more questions in advance of Lesson’s Learned meeting

June 18, 2015 at 9:01 pm

After finding out the Lesson’s Learned would not be the place to receive the answers to several questions that remained unanswered at the “workshop format” it looks like the Town will proceed with I reminded Bob Shelton we still want and deserve answers.  These answers were published yesterday on the Town’s website.  Here is a sampling:

1. Why were no Town staff called as witnesses to support the Town’s position at the OMB hearing?
Town staff did not play a role in reviewing the application and/or providing a professional planning opinion to Council. Council instead hired an outside planning consultant (Ms. Victor) to, in effect, act as staff on this application and to process the application and make recommendations to Council.
Council did not hire Ms. Victor to defend the Official Plan, but rather to process the application and provide a professional planning opinion and recommendations to Council.
Because staff did not play an active role in reviewing and/or processing the application (other than to provide administrative support to Ms. Victor), staff could not be called upon to provide evidence on the appropriateness of the application at the OMB.
In the event Council had not hired Ms. Victor and instead staff had made a specific recommendation to Council, staff’s position at the OMB would have been in support of the staffs recommendations in their professional opinion, and not just to support Council’s position. For example, in instances where Council does not agree with staff recommendations, it cannot then ask staff to defend Council’s decision at the OMB and it must decide whether it wants to hire its own professional planner (as was the case here) to defend its position.
2. How can the Planner for the GPA come up with points and a strategy to challenge Marianneville’s proposal and the Town did not?
At Council’s direction following the referral of the plan to the OMB, Town staff contacted 10-12 planning consulting firms, both locally and from across the Region, in an effort to find a professional planner that could support Council’s position. In addition to specific conversations with the firms, staff also provided background reports and Town planning documents for their review where requested.
Upon reviewing the application and the available documents, only one of the planning consulting firms was able to support Council’s position.
Although the GPA was able to find a planner to support Council’s position, the OMB was not swayed by that professional’s evidence and instead preferred the argument and evidence of the developer’s consulting planner and that of Ms. Victor who appeared at the OMB Hearing for this Phase under subpoena by the developer.

Having read these several times it seems that the Town is giving us the impression that it did everything it could and if there is fault it lies elsewhere!  As we were intimately involved in at least some aspects of the defence discussions for the OMB hearing this is a very mysterious and somewhat oblivious position to take.

This lack of openess to constructive criticism is a bad sign leading up to the Lesson’s Learned meeting – June 23rd from 7-9pm at the Newmarket Senior’s Center located at 474 Davis Drive.

I encourage you to read these reponses and the Q&A provided at our last public meeting and come out to the Lesson’s Learned and provide how you feel the Town should have handled better development applications and the OMB.

NEW LOCATION – Get ready for June 23rd’s Lessons Learned Public Meeting!

June 8, 2015 at 8:14 am

We hope as many of you as possible can make the Town’s Lesson’s Learned meeting – 7 to 9pm, June 23rd at the Newmarket Seniors’ Meeting Place, 474 Davis Drive.

Come prepared with at 1 or 2 things that made you scratch your head duirng the “process” that shout Why does it take so long to get answers and when we do they are generic boilerplated or Why did the Town not have a strategy or put up a defence of its Official Plan at the OMB hearing when that is exactly the reason it voted to fight at the OMB!

Check out the answers to your questions (Glenway Preservation Association Questions and Answers) from the last public meeting where the Town reviewed the OMB decision on Glenway and gave a glimpse on what actions are soon coming.

In preparation for this meeting a few questions come to mind:

  1. Who specifically from the Town has responsibility for development issues? External resources are used all the time and in the case of Glenway even an external planner was used. It was clear that a lack of direction was given to this planner to defend our Official Plan. This was the reason the Town fought the OMB on the Glenway file.
  2. Knowing the Glenway lands were up for sale as early as 2008 why didn’t the Town take steps in the 2010 Official Plan review to strengthen zoning by-laws or a long term open green space plan for things the Town needs to be a healthy vibrant community as we almost double in population the next 25 years.
  3. Why didn’t the Town know to address GO transit co-location as far back as 2004 when the EG GO Hub was opened. The GO Bus location was key in the OMB decision to intensify Glenway. Why wasn’t this part of Secondary Growth Plan with the hundreds of millions being spent on Davis and starting soon on Yonge Street.
  4. The Town couldn’t seem to respond in a timely manner to review the “completed” development application in the 180 days allotted. Throughout the process the Town didn’t have needed planning input from the developer to even deem the application complete for a review..
  5. Why wasn’t the Town more prepared with a strategy, expert witnesses,planning arguments and use of Town staff to defend itself at an OMB hearing?
  6. Will their be a independant Construction Manager that is accesible 24/7 for noise, traffic, work hours, debris issues, etc…  Too many problems have occurred that can easily be avoided if the rules are followed.

 

We should all expect responsibility, accountability and transparency when it comes to how our Town Council and Staff conducts itself on our behalf!

This is to be a Town-wide Lesson’s Learned and not just Glenway to better equip the Town to defend it’s Official Plan and to develop not just for the benefit of a developer but the Town in general – what we need for a healthy vibrant community long term.

We hope to see you there and bring your suggestions to the Town.

Residents questions answered by Town Staff

February 15, 2015 at 12:19 pm

Resudents had a good opportunity of asking any question on their minds regarding the OMB decision that was pro-development and what can be expected as the development project moves forward.

Residents received a good presentation from CAO, Bob Sheltonthat took them through details of what to expect since the OMB decision last April.  Details also came out regarding discussions on the west lands of Glenway.  We can expect a formal application for development of holes 13,17 and 18 in the next few months.

A panel made up of Mayor Tony Van Bynen, Regional Councillor John Taylor, Town CAO Bob Shelton, Commissioner for Development and Infrastructure Development Peter Noehammer and Ward 7 Concillor Christina Bisanz answered all questions posed from residents during the evening.  In addition, the Town pre-prepared answers to over 20 questions (attached – Glenway Preservation Association Questions and Answers)

If you have further questions please direct them through Ward 7 Concillor, Christina Bisanz at cbisanz@newmarket.ca

Upcoming Public Information Centers (PIC) and Public Information Opportunities

February 15, 2015 at 12:17 pm

PIC and PIS

 

Residents will have the opportunity to have detailed information and input into Community Site Plan’s and Plans of Subdivision that will take place throughout 2015.

For residents concerned about Phase 1 development issues of compatibility, drainage or the number of issues during construction (traffic, parking, dust, debris, noise, hours of construction, etc…) there is a PIC on the former lands of the Glenway clubhouse

February 24th from 6-8pm – Cane Rms A&B at Town of Newmarket offices at 395 Mulock Drive

Full list of information opportunities is attached (PUBLIC INFORMATION CENTRES AND PUBLIC INPUT OPPORTUNITIES)

GPA – 2015 ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING

February 14, 2015 at 4:37 pm

Thursday February 12, 2015
Crosslands Church, Newmarket – 9 p.m.

Chairperson: Brian Gard

1.   Call to Order and Welcome – Brian Gard

2.  Presentation of March 4 2014 AGM minutes
Motion: to accept the 2014 AGM minutes as presented
Moved: Ethan Vos Seconded: Mike Lanthier

3.  GPA Priorities for 2015 – Brian Gard
-complete review of OMB decision to determine impact on residents
-participate in the “Lessons Learned” meeting led by the Town
-determine the future mandate for the GPA

4. Treasurer’s Report – Lois Macdonnell; read by Brian Gard
Motion: treasurer’s report will be received as presented
Moved: Deb Pope Seconded: Gord Tozer

5. Election of GPA Executive
No nominations were received for any position. The three remaining officers agreed to hold their position until after the Lesson’s Learned meeting.
Chair: Vacant
Vice Chair: Dave Sovran
Treasurer: Lois Macdonnell
Secretary: Kelly VanHemert
Motion: to acclaim the current individuals to their executive positions
Moved: Ethan Vos Seconded: Mike Lanthier

6.  Questions and closing remarks
Motion: that the meeting be adjourned
Moved: Gord Tozer Seconded: Lois Macdonnell

To have success at the OMB hearing we need your financial support!

March 8, 2014 at 2:30 pm

GPA Mar 4th Meeting

Thanks to everyone inside Glenway and the rest of Newmarket that have given their support to preserve Glenway’s community value and protect our Town’s limited precious green space.

 

Resident efforts help defend Newmarket’s Official Plan to better control development decisions in our communities.

 
 The opening video from our March 7th meeting: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VueLGkRG-O4 
   

How your donations have already helped:

  • Provided the Town with a strong planning argument – resulting in a 9-0 vote against the development applications
  • Helped structure the OMB Hearing into 2 phases where the principle of development will be front and center as Phase 1
  • Created a plan of action for the OMB Hearing process that begins March 17th
  • Helped the Town secure their planner who will support and expand our argument during the Hearing process

 

What you heard from our latest community update meeting:

  • We have a great chance to win on the Principle of Development argument (do we need to build or not?)
  • This returns control of development back to the Town for decision making based on Newmarket’s Official Plan and review process
  • If the OMB wants to proceed directly to Phase 2 before a decision can be reached we can still apply the argument of the principle of development to each technical issue raised

 

How do we see this playing out and the investment required:

  • Witness statement and hearing preparation:  12 hours planning/10 hours legal
  • Phase 1 will be up to 2 weeks, or approximately $ 20,000 per full week
  • Phase 2 is scheduled a further 4 weeks however we will limit or eliminate our paid representation for that part of the hearing
  • To satisfy our needs as a community at the OMB we need another $26,000 (now less than $20,000 based on the last few days)

 

What we need from you as soon as possible:

1.    Buy an hour of Planner’s time with a donation of $200
                                              OR
2.    Buy a ½ hour of Lawyer’s time with a donation of $150
                                              OR
3.    Buy a 1/2 hour or 1/4 hour Planner’s time with a donation of $100 or $50 respectively

 

Email us at contact@preserveglenway.ca and we will come by to pick up your cheque
or  donate on-line at DONATE NOW

 

We have a track record for success now.      We are so close!  

Let’s make this happen together!

Please mark your calendars to attend this important March 4th Community Meeting

February 20, 2014 at 8:31 pm

GPA Mar 4th Meeting

 We expect everyone to come on out for the March 4th Community Meeting (CLICK HERE). 

We want you to know what is happening, 

 We want to hear from you any thoughts as we enter the OMB Hearing. 

 Read what Chris Emanuel has to say:  http://chrisemanuel.com/blog/2014/2/20/glenway-update.html

Town Council votes a unanimous NO to Glenway development

November 26, 2013 at 1:38 pm

It was a nervous evening for us all and vindication of our consistent challenge to the Town of “WHY is this development necessary?”   It was an evening where we hoped to see a turning point for how the Municipality would defend our Official Plan and their vision for healthy and appropriate growth and development in this community.  At the end of the evening I am proud to say Town Council voted 9 – 0 to oppose Marianneville’s submissions for development of the Glenway lands.

It was a satisfying win for residents of Glenway and Newmarket residents as a whole.  While the Planner hired by the Town focussed on technical requirements of the Developer’s application proposal and Settlement offers, she downplayed the foundational concept of the ‘principle of development’.  This is the WHY, the rationale that needed to be answered before drilling into the technical details of any development proposal.  The principle of development speaks directly to our vision of Newmarket and the extensive planning efforts that are the Official Plan and the Secondary Growth Plan.  It is clear that the development proposal offered by Marianneville doesn’t fit the Town’s planning vision and objectives.  It serves no purpose that is positive for the Town, its residents and the health of the Glenway community.

Following an excellent deputation from Dave Sovran of the GPA there were more than a dozen residents from inside Glenway and several from outside of Glenway who passionately supported both the protection of the character and nature of our existing neighbourhood from unnecessary development as well as the value of the principle of development in how the Town supports a vision for Newmarket.  Residents of Newmarket should be proud of the growing unity they continue to demonstrate in supporting all neighbourhood communities throughout Newmarket.

Prior to the Town Council vote there was a strong opening motion made by our Ward Councillor, Chris Emanuel asking Council to oppose development followed by Regional Councillor John Taylor who showed leadership in his words to the rest of Council.   It was clear that residents of Newmarket feel as we do in Glenway and this was demonstrated by the “hundreds of emails from residents” received by Ward 3 Councillor, Jane Twinney.

Today begins our continuing work with the Town of Newmarket to fight and win at the OMB Hearing scheduled for next March.  More than ever we will be relying on legal and planning expertise that has proved invaluable in creation and support of “the Principle of Development”.

We encourage all of you to please speak to your neighbours, friends and residents throughout Newmarket to support us with your emails, your presence at upcoming meetings and your financial donations.  This will help to ensure we can move together strongly at the OMB.

There are some good reviews of the evening below and I encourage you to read them. 

Read more from Chris Emanuel including his speech from last night:
http://chrisemanuel.com/blog/2013/11/25/newmarket-council-votes-unanimously-to-oppose-glenway-develo.html

Read more from Julia Li at yorkregion.com:
http://www.yorkregion.com/news-story/4236100-newmarket-will-fight-glenway-development-at-omb/

Read more from an eloquent Newmarket resident, Gordon Prentice who lives outside of our ward:
http://shrinkslessorsquare.ca/blog/122-councillors-back-glenway-residents

GPA Planner Report as part of In-Camera Presentation to Town Council

November 10, 2013 at 7:58 pm

On Monday, Nov. 4, Executive from the Glenway Preservation Association attended an in-camera session with Council and Staff, in order that our Planner, Nick McDonald present to them his detailed planning report on our behalf.  He also presented a critique of the Staff report which outlines our disappointment with the approach taken in the report by the Town’s planning consultant, a report which, in spite of our repeated requests, did not includei an analysis about why the Glenway lands need to be developed and why this development proposal fits within the Official Plan and the Town’s Secondary Growth Plan.   The Council had many questions for Nick and after we left, engaged in further discussion on what we proposed.  On November 25, they will be voting how to proceed.

 Our objective is to ensure that the Town demonstrates leadership on this issue and takes a clear stand to oppose the Marianneville application based on its failing to meet the principle of development.  To date, the Town has taken no stand and finds itself in a weak position until it does so.

Nick's reportIf the Town agrees with adopting the ‘principle of development’ approach, then both the Town and the Community will be united before the OMB making an even stronger argument in favour of declaring this application premature, and in changing the land-use planning around Glenway to a process which is led by the Town within the Official Plan process.

If the Town votes to mediate or negotiate an agreement, or to simply fight the application on technical grounds, we will see the developer run roughshod over the Council and negatively alter the face of the Glenway community forever. 

To help you better understand the details of the approach which we outlined in our last community meeting, we have uploaded a copy of the full report for you all to review.

Meridian ltr on Marianneville Oct 30 13(FINAL)nm