Background information on Site Plan for Block 159 (area of former clubhouse)

February 2, 2015 at 9:46 am

To help residents who want more information on the happenings on January 19th in Council regarding Glenway we have navigated through the Town of Newmarket website and if you click on the link –

Listen to Marianneville’s review of site plan along with Council’s comments and motions.

I think it is important to notes several comments that as a resident you may wish to review including:

  • Comments made by Marianneville about Block 159 (74 Townhouses) and the lands directly west of Eagle (40 homes) being part of the initial phase of housing:  fast forward to 24:00
  • Regional Councillor Taylor’s remarks on clarifying phasing to the overall context – more transpiracy to the remainder of development: fast forward to 40:08
  • Councillor Kerwin’s remarks on “the sooner we move forward…” “…we had the opportunity to purchase the land and didn’t…” and “the Town has spent over $1M to date:  fast forward to 54:47.
  • Councillor Bisanz’s remarks to share with residents a Public Information Centre:  fast forward to 59:54
  • Councillor Kerwin’s remarks “this has been very costly to this municipality – almost $1M…”: fast forward to 1:06:41

In the end the motion to proceed to a Public Information centre (PIC) by Councillor Bisanz was approved which will be February 24th in Council Chambers.

It should be very informative session and we hope you bring your questions.  The GPA may be posing questions as well as it relates to the community interface as previously discussed with the Town.

How does the leaked memo affect Glenway Residents?

October 6, 2014 at 1:47 pm

Some of you may have received a copy of a confidential Memo from the Town of Newmarket at your home related to the west Glenway lands, or read about this in the Thursday edition of The Era.  The memo in question was delivered by John Blommesteyn, one of the Ward 7 candidates for the upcoming municipal election and the husband of Ward 6 Councilor Maddie DiMuccio.

Understandably the Glenway community is wondering what the memo means, and why it was leaked three days before Council had agreed to make it public.

The memo indicates that the Town of Newmarket had approached Marianneville (the developer) to inquire whether any of the Glenway West lands would potentially be for sale in advance of Marianneville submitting its next application for development of these lands.  This is something that we have been anticipating would happen given the OMB ruling against the GPA and Town’s argument that the development as a whole did not meet the principle of development.

It is our understanding that the memo was provided to Council in response to its direction to Town staff, to consider all the options potentially available in order to determine whether any of the remaining golf course lands could be spared from development. The memo addresses one component that was under consideration – whether Marianneville would be prepared to sell a portion of the lands to the Town of Newmarket. The memo also indicates, as we expected, that the developer would likely file an application to develop the west Glenway lands within the year.

Here is our take on the situation.

The premature release of this confidential document is not only inappropriate but it potentially harms the ability for the Town to negotiate with the developer for fair market purchase of the land in the future. While the public is now aware of that, there may now be other parties come forward with an interest in purchasing these lands that could ‘up the ante’ and even include land which was previously assumed to be ‘undevelopable‘, such as those situated on the edge of the Oak Ridges Moraine.

As a community, we need to be aware that the premature leakage of this document was a political stunt by a would-be Ward Councilor and abetted by a Council insider (3 guesses) who again has demonstrated her lack of respect for the rules of confidentiality.   Members of the Glenway Preservation Association have put hundreds of volunteer hours and our own dollars into fighting for Glenway—because we live here.  We must continue to stand together to ensure our community is represented for the right reasons and in the right way, and not play games with our future as the approved development moves forward, and a new application eventually gets submitted.

Mr. Blommesteyn does not live in Glenway or in Ward 7, and was never involved in or supportive of our fight until it became politically expedient for him to do.  He was quoted in the Era Banner as stating that this development found its way to the OMB because the Town missed a deadline and therefore missed an opportunity to find a better solution for the community.  The fact of the matter is that no Town with an application of this scale would have been able to meet the timeline imposed by the Planning Act.  In fact, even as the process moved to the OMB pre-hearing many months later, the developer had still not yet responded to the Town’s demands for modifications to their application.  The planning process as it exists now clearly tips the table in favour of the developer, who can simply include an OMB appeal into their standard approach.  If Mr. Blommesteyn wishes to represent the community effectively, he must make himself aware of the facts of what we’ve gone through, the planning process and the very limited options available when dealing with, and attempting to negotiate with a developer.

Let’s not allow someone to play political games with our homes and our future.  This affects both our Ward and our Town as we continue local intensification initiatives.  As a community, we are still owed an important ‘Lessons Learned’ meeting from this Council as we ourselves look to better understand how Council and Staff can better serve the needs of our community.

The GPA does not endorse any political party or candidate!

June 8, 2014 at 8:12 pm

Recently it was brought to our attention that a facsimile reproduction of the Glenway Preservation Association’s lawn sign – which still remains on many lawns throughout our community – was used on a local candidate’s brochure as an inference of that person’s support to our cause, with the implication that another candidate did not provide similar support.  Several GPA members have taken exception to what they perceive to be the unauthorized and inappropriate use of our lawn signs (albeit a photo-adjusted version) as an “endorsement” of a candidate.

While the GPA has always appreciated whatever support that we have received from politicians at all levels of government, we have steadfastly remained non-partisan in our advocacy on behalf of the Glenway community.

We have not, nor will we, endorse or support the use of our material, logo, website or social media to promote political agendas.

Our role is to work with all levels of government, and with all political parties, to influence the change that we believe is required to protect community interests from unwanted development.  Further, as noted in our recent e-mail blast to the community, we continue to insist on a community meeting to discuss “lessons learned” from the devastating decision of the OMB, along with open transparency from Newmarket Council regarding the process and decisions that lead to the final settlement between the Town and Marianneville.  Finally, we recognize that there is a broader need to advocate for reforms to the OMB process itself, so that other communities can avoid experiencing losses similar to what has happened here.

Members of the community may wish to refer to an article recently published in the Newmarket Banner, which highlights the position of all provincial candidates on the question of OMB reform. email.  Our view on this is that legislative change is necessary.  The OMB remains an anomaly – a quasi-judicial body that unilaterally can take decisions in a format that is unfamiliar to communities, disadvantages both residents and municipal councils financially to defend themselves, and of course by definition, favours developers who have focus their applications on exploiting these facts.   We believe the OMB needs to be radically altered or completed replaced by a more effective planning approach.

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:

Read more from Julia Li at

Read more from an eloquent Newmarket resident, Gordon Prentice who lives outside of our ward:

Deputation – October 15, 2013 Glenway Preservation Association to Town of Newmarket Council

October 21, 2013 at 5:10 pm

First, I would like to thank Crossland Church for making this venue available tonight to serve the needs of Council and the Glenway Community.  And to Council, thank-you for this opportunity and allowing us to present an important perspective through our expert planner, Nick McDonald.

We have been pleased to be an on-going part of this discussion with Council. 

Residents of the Glenway community have invested significantly in time, after-tax dollars and personal sacrifice, to have a voice in this matter.

We have not opposed development in our general community where proper planning has occurred (ie. McGregor Farm) and despite the increased densities associated with the proposed Secondary plan for the Yonge/Davis corridors, and the inevitable impacts which will affect our community, we continue to constructively participate in that planning process.

However, as stated by our expert planner, we have strong concerns with the absence of a Town-led, community involved planning process on this file.

We expected to hear confirmation of the many technical deficiencies in the application and without prejudice offer and were pleased to see the first two recommendations recommending that they be rejected.

However, we are extremely disappointed with the lack of any cohesive planning discussion on WHY THESE LANDS NEED TO BE DEVELOPED, AND/OR TO WHAT EXTENT.

READ Christina Bisanz’s entire deputation:  Bisanz GPA deputation Oct 15 13


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Other related articles of interest:


Era Banner on “Settlement Offer” – comments are interesting read!

August 30, 2013 at 3:08 pm

Glenway developer proposes smaller buildings

by Julie Le published on August 26, 2013 on

A settlement offer has been sent to the Town of Newmarket over the Glenway development proposal.

Marianneville Developments Limited made the offer public with 13 listed revisions and conditions to try to avoid a potentially costly and lengthy fight at the Ontario Municipal Board.

Changes to the plans include limiting some building heights, having landscaping buffers and revising the mix of dwelling units to 184 single-detached homes, 219 townhouses, 297 apartments and 30 detached bungalows.

In other words – a shuffling of the deck to benefit the Developer’s pocket book

Read more


Glenway developer offers Newmarket olive branch

by ERA Banner published on August 29, 2013 on

A settlement offer from developers of the Glenway proposal doesn’t go far enough, one citizen group that’s against the development said after reviewing the list of 13 revisions and conditions made in an effort to avoid a potentially costly and lengthy fight at the Ontario Municipal Board.

“It’s just shuffling the deck chairs on the Titanic,” Glenway Preservation Association vice-president Dave Sovran said, noting residents expected as much, but the anger that has been boiling over since the offer was made public has given them more reason to forge ahead in their fight against the development.

The offer still contradicts the official plan and doesn’t offer much in terms of compromise, he added.

Read more


April 5, 2013 at 6:21 pm

logo glenway



 To:  All Mayors in Ontario                                                                                                        April 5, 2013

cc:  Ontario MPP’s


Dear Mayor,

You may not know of the Glenway Preservation Association (GPA), a community-based organization representing thousands of residents in Newmarket, Ontario.  You will, however, be aware of the plight of many communities throughout Ontario with local municipalities whose ability to control their destiny is being severely undermined by unnecessary and unwanted development pressures.  We are writing to enlist your support in changing the course of growth  for its own sake, in favour of sound, community- and environmentally-friendly planning decisions.


The Town of Newmarket is one of 25 municipalities identified in the province’s Places to Grow strategy as an intensification corridor to accommodate increased residential and industrial growth by 2031.  While the Places to Grow strategy was designed to eliminate urban sprawl through planned development strategies, an unintended consequence is in fact causing significant distress within communities.  This is the situation that is occurring when municipalities, who have sound plans to meet their growth targets in ways that also address community needs, are being challenged by developers who are able to override municipal Official Plans by leveraging the Ontario Municipal Board (OMB) to counter the municipal council decisions, often using the growth targets to validate their claims.  This has a significant consequence for municipalities who are being robbed of their ability to manage their own growth plans without having to spend significant tax dollars to defend their community’s interests at the OMB.


The Town of Newmarket faces just such a situation.  Recently, the Glenway golf course, one of the Town’s last remaining open green spaces, as it is designated in our approved Official Plan, was purchased by Marianneville Developments.  Marianneville has submitted an application to amend the Official Plan, and turn this precious resource into a development of over 700 housing units.  The developer is justifying the development on the grounds that it will support the growth targets set for the Town of Newmarket. In actual fact, other planned development—supported by the Official Plan— will already more than accommodate our growth requirements.


Anticipating that a negative response from the Town will undoubtedly lead to a costly challenge at the OMB, our municipality is gearing up to spend hundreds of thousands of taxpayers’ dollars to defend its own Official Plan.  In addition, the GPA has been building its own legal defense fund, in order to ensure that the community has a voice in the OMB decision-making process.


We believe that this dynamic is playing itself out across the province in similar growth targeted communities.  While property owners have the right to develop their property within sound planning principles, we do not believe that property owners should be able to exploit the Places to Grow Act objectives by creating intensification projects inconsistent with community interests and needs.


There is a growing body of evidence to support the position that municipalities and communities are no longer willing to allow their interests to be overridden by developers who use their “deep pockets” and resources to appeal to an OMB that applies insufficient weight to community interests in its decision-making.


Recently, Frank Klees, MPP for Newmarket-Aurora, introduced The Preserving Existing Communities Act (Bill 41), which would amend the Places to Grow Act  ( Places to grow Act:,       to address this inequity.  The GPA supports the principle of Bill 41, and its objective to empower municipal councils to make the final decision about what their communities grow like, while also ensuring appropriate accountability of municipal Councils to their electorate for the decisions they make.  Further information on Bill 41 along with a petition of support is attached here.   

Glenway Greenspace

Exisitng greenspace for wildlife and healthy local ecosystems, for our community and our children


If you support your municipality’s right to maintain and uphold the integrity of your Official  Plan and your community’s interest against unwanted and unnecessary development, we encourage you to support The Preserving Existing Communities Act within your own municipal council, and with your provincial elected officials.  Feel free to invite your residents to submit their signed petition directly to the office of their MPP.  We welcome your response. Together we can make a difference in reclaiming control over the process of how we grow and evolve our own communities.


 Christina Bisanz Chairperson, GPA  



Press Release – Response to tabling of “Preserving Existing Communities” Act

March 22, 2013 at 9:57 am

Glenway Logo V1R




The Glenway Preservation Association’s Response to the Proposed

“Preserving Existing Communities” Act

March 21, 2013

The Private Member’s Bill “Preserving Existing Communities Act” introduced by Mr. Klees, MPP today, highlights the difficult situation that identified Urban Growth Centres face as intensification projects start to take root, especially if municipalities find themselves trying to defend their Official Plans against unwanted and unnecessary development. “Having to fight against powerful developers whose finances and clout far exceed the limited resources of municipal budgets demonstrates the real risk that municipal planning is simply a worthless taxpayer-funded exercise with no leverage to protect existing communities and their residents’ vision for the future of their community and neighbourhoods,” says Christina Bisanz, Chairperson of the Glenway Preservation Association (GPA). Homeowners are also denied the opportunity to experience appreciation in the value of their homes.

The GPA, a not-for-profit organization formed to serve as the voice of residents in the Glenway community is well aware of the context in which the province’s “Places to Grow” legislation came into being (in 2005), and of its intent to control growth and eliminate the so-called “urban sprawl” that was quickly eating up lands in the GTA without sound planning principles. Dave Sovran, vice-chair of the group notes that “as an organization, we support planned growth in Newmarket as being part of a healthy and responsible approach to managing the evolution of our Town. In fact, planned, strategic growth led to the original creation of the wonderful neighbourhood we live in today!”

The GPA believes that the Town of Newmarket’s Council and planners have worked carefully to embrace and conform to provincially legislated growth plans. The Town invested significant time, resources and public consultation to create its own Official Plan in 2006, which subsequently underwent review and approval by the Region in May 2010.

“We also believe that Newmarket, after careful study and projections, is readily on track to meet its planned intensification targets that were established for each urban growth centre identified in the Places to Grow strategy,” says Ms. Bisanz. “In fact, at this point we are already on a pace to easily achieve and exceed our 2031 intensification growth targets many years ahead of schedule despite the fact that our Town has clear land supply constraints”, she added.

Intensification Corridor

 “It is a fact, then that not only is any proposed development of the Glenway neighbourhood unnecessary to meet our targets, it is also completely contrary to the Town’s Official Plan and its citizens’ vision for the future of this Town”, said Mr. Sovran. The Glenway Estates development proposal put forward by Marianneville Homes is therefore unnecessary for growth targets and is a set-back to the long-term vision and future potential of the quality of our Town by removing precious green space and disturbing a long-established neighbourhood.

“Residents in Newmarket rightfully expect that Newmarket’s planning efforts, which meet all levels of Regional and Provincial standards, be respected. Specifically, we expect that the Glenway neighbourhood will not be subject to unnecessary, unplanned infill development. We have the right to ensure that the values that brought us to become homeowners in Glenway and residents of Newmarket, be protected and that our community open green space be preserved,” said Ms. Bisanz.

The GPA appreciates the intent of this Private Member’s Bill to raise critical awareness to the situation which we and many other Ontario neighbourhoods are facing, regardless of whether they are included in the provincial growth target plans. This is a time for elected officials at all levels of government to fine-tune the approach to municipal development in this province in a way which still maintains the positive intent behind the Places to Grow Act, and related legislation.

In conclusion, the GPA calls for an all-party solution to be developed to protect communities across this province that is being threatened by rapid, unplanned and unjustifiable development. We further call for amendments to an OMB process which can simply overrule municipal planning decisions and silence community groups which have meaningful concerns about growth plans being presented and carried out.

To see more information relevant to our situation in Newmarket, please go to:

Private Members Bill to empower Municipal councils on local development proposals

March 22, 2013 at 9:56 am

We are not the only ones fighting this fight!   The article below is being published in the Auroran and ERA banner this week.  Our MPP presented a Private Members Bill at Queen’s Park regarding an issue facing municipalities throughout Ontario including Newmarket.  That is:  strengthening the voice of  residents through their elected municipal officials and local Official Plan’s to control planned development.   

A press conference was held Thursday at 7pm at the Newmarket Town Hall where MPP Frank Klees made a statement regarding the intent of the Bill and would be seeking support from all parties before a debate on the bill as early as mid-April.  

In Mr. Klees message he stated that he believes even the introduction of this Bill will send a message to Developers that they need to work more closely with Municiplaties to satisfy their needs and not just rely on the OMB.  At the same time, local elected officials (and their Planning departments)  need to be held more accountable for planned development.  He stated that Councils that vote NO against proposed development knowing the OMB has a history of supporting a Developer is also a practice the Bill will stop.

This is a positive for our fight over the development of Glenway and it demoinstrates again that our voice is being heard. 

 For more information go to:

 Bill 35, Preserving Existing Communities Act, 2013 – Revised and reintroduced as Bill 41

 Frankly Speaking, March 19, 2013

Newmarket’s Glenway development not needed: residents

January 11, 2013 at 7:29 pm

by Teresa Latchford published on January 10, 2012 on
The numbers show the proposed Glenway development isn’t needed to meet a provincial growth target.  Newmarket has a population of 85,000  and the Places to Grow Act expects that number to grow to 98,000 by 2026, meaning the town needs to have room for about 13,000 new people, according to Ward 7 Councillor Chris Emanuel.

The town’s official plan and secondary official plan designates housing in the northwest, southeast and other periodic areas in town will accommodate 7,000 people, leaving the town with 6,000 people for whom to find room. That growth is to be accommodated along the Yonge Street and Davis Drive corridors, which will, in turn, support the rapid transit system currently under construction.  The Slessor Square development is expected to provide accommodation for 1,300 people, the two buildings approved at the corner of Yonge and Davis will yield living space for 1,150 and buildings proposed at Yonge and Millard Avenue will house another 700 people.  “Just three parcels (of land) get us halfway there and we’re being told we need help to hit our target,” he said. “I’m sorry, but the numbers just tell a different story.”
Newmarket residents want town council to stick to its official plan when it comes to the proposed Glenway development.

More than 600 people turned out for a public planning meeting last night, with 400 packing the Newmarket Theatre seats and the rest watching the meeting on a big screen in an overflow room at Newmarket High School.  The message from residents and the Glenway Preservation Association was clear — it’s an application that doesn’t fit with the town’s official plan and should be rejected.

Read more