Milton Council Focuses on Planning for the Future

By: Laura Steiner

Milton Council focused on planning for the town’s future at its September 25 meeting.  Four presentations from staff focused on what the town will look like in 2036. “As we plan for future growth into the Sustainable Halton Lands, we are delivering on the vision to build a complete community,” said CAO Bill Mann. “What’s most important is that as we grow, we do it in a way that makes sense for Milton.”

A Land Base Analysis (LBA) provided an overview of matters to be considered in determining the progression and phasing of growth in the Sustainable Halton Lands.  The L.B.A. focused on the areas along the Trafalgar Road corridor, and Agerton (south of 401), and Britannia Rd/ Milton Education Village area.  It included plans for two separate Go Stations (Derry & Trafalgar area), and one near Milton Education Village.    . Council also reiterated its commitment to work with Metrolinx to bring two-way, all-day GO Train service to Milton. Metrolinx recently announced plans to push back two-way all-day Go service to 2041.

A companion Fiscal Impact Study provided a financial context projecting the costs of building and maintaining assets, infrastructure, programs and services for the growing community.  The Fiscal Impact Study was presented by Gary Scanlon of Watson & Associates Economists.  “These studies lay the foundation for a dialogue,” Scanlon told the audience.  He warned of possible future tax hikes as high as $500 for every $100,000 should residential growth continue to outpace business growth.

The final presentation included a review of the community’s future urban structure from Planning Commissioner, Barbara Koopmans. A user-friendly map, Building Possibility, illustrates the various components of the updated urban structure intended for the community. Council endorsed Milton’s future urban structure in principle, and directed staff to implement it through the Official Plan process and in future planning exercises. The map can be viewed at www.milton.ca/BuildingPossibility.  “This is precedent setting.  We have to get this right the first time,” Regional & Local Councillor Colin Best summed up.