Ontario's Housing Affordability Task Force report was released by Doug Ford on February 8, 2022 less than two months after Ford and Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing Steve Clark appointed the task force.
The task force's proposed changes would lessen the power that cities have over housing developments by giving the province the authority to impose standards related to zoning, density and urban design.
Some of the report's key recommendations:
Increase density in neighbourhoods zoned exclusively for single-family homes.
Repeal municipal policies that focus on preserving a neighbourhood's character.
Set uniform provincial standards for urban design, including building shadows and setbacks.
Limit the time spent consulting the public on housing developments.
Legislate timelines for development approvals, and if the municipality misses the deadline, the project gets an automatic green light.
"Immediate reforms could be in place before Ontario's provincial election on June 2. Ford's Progressive Conservatives intend to bring in legislation responding to the task force report during the upcoming sitting of Queen's Park, a senior government official told CBC News."
Aurora Mayor Tom Mrakas is “truly disappointed” with a new provincial affordable housing report he worries could open the door to disturbing levels of development.
“Apparently, the solution to the housing affordability crisis is to limit public input and allow developers to build whatever they want, wherever they want,” he said in a statement.
“Profit-driven public planning won’t solve the affordability crisis in our communities. This is not a plan for the people.” Read Lisa Queen's (Aurora Banner) story here