Waterfront Plans, Economic Development Office & More


Council’s Planning and Development Committee met last week on September 4th, its first meeting since June.

An Official Plan and Zoning amendment application has been made to permit a sixteen-unit apartment at 422 King Street.  The applicant proposes to maintain the character and form of the original building on the site.  The next step is for the Town to hold a public meeting on the application.

The Committee is recommending Council approve changes to the Site Plan Approval process particularly concerning financial requirements placed on applicants. The intent is to reduce wait times for approvals and to reduce the financial burden especially for work to be carried out by the applicant on the applicant’s own property.  A more supportive, business-friendly policy appears to be the goal here.

The Committee is also recommending Council retain the Planning Partnership to proceed with the next steps in implementing the Unimin Waterfront Lands Master Plan.  This requires a formal review of Midland’s Official Plan and a redesignation of the site for Mixed-Use Residential redevelopment.  It will require an allocation of $11,100 in the 2014 budget. This work is needed to pre-plan and ready the Unimin site for its desired redevelopment.  In response to a concern raised at the meeting, both the CAO and the Planning Director gave assurances there will be significant public input throughout this process.  A public information meeting on Unimin will be scheduled for October, date to be confirmed.

Finally, the Committee is recommending the municipalities of Tay, Tiny, Penetanguishene and Midland jointly submit an application to the County of Simcoe for $200,000 per year to create an Economic Development Office (EDO).  The funding will advance the goals of the Huronia Economic Alliance (www.investhuronia.ca) created by the four municipalities to achieve a more vibrant, healthy local economy.

All four local Councils will be dealing with this item in September – Midland at its meeting on Monday, September 23rd.  We whole-heartedly support economic development that focuses on creating good local jobs and improving residents’ quality of life.

Stewart Strathearn on behalf of Midlandcommunity.ca

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