News   Apr 15, 2021
 218     0 
News   Apr 15, 2021
 607     0 
News   Apr 14, 2021
 418     0 

Roads: GTA West Corridor—Highway 413—Guelph to 400

jelbana

Active Member
Member Bio
Joined
Jul 18, 2020
Messages
161
Reaction score
357
It's well documented in commercial sectors that there is a crazy shortage of industrial space right now, and tenants are looking further and further afield for space. Tenants that historically would have operated out of Mississauga or Vaughan are looking at Cambridge and Bradford now.

Why do we pretend that sprawl is the only solution? That's a very North America centric view. In places where sprawl is not encouraged, they somehow are able to meet demand for industrial space without resorting to greenfield highway construction. I'd like to see more analysis that describes alternative methods of meeting demand for industrial space before accepting that sprawl and greenfield development is the answer.
 

Haljackey

Active Member
Member Bio
Joined
Apr 12, 2010
Messages
543
Reaction score
229
Location
London, Ontario
Well if you make development policies too restrictive, and the transportation network too inefficient, prospective companies will look elsewhere. Warehousing, manufacturing and logistic industries need a lot of land and adequate access to highways, rail lines, ports, airports, etc.

You need to walk a fine line, and it's hard when your competing cities make things more attractive for certain types of development. London's been prepping a lot of land for industrial use near the 401, and advertising quick highway access as a plus. We've been successful in attracting investment that may have gone elsewhere.
 

CaskoChan

Active Member
Member Bio
Joined
Jun 25, 2020
Messages
160
Reaction score
242
Location
Caledon East
I went to Brampton this morning and took bramalea road and the amount of land for sale is crazy, not just the for sale signs but also signs that show a development company's name on it.

I saw what I think are land surveyors around the proposed interchange on bramalea as well.
 

north-of-anything

Active Member
Member Bio
Joined
Dec 21, 2018
Messages
477
Reaction score
753
Location
Bradford
Why is this development occurring in Cambridge and Bradford a bad thing again? These "further afield" settlements also need employment so people can work closer to home, and the infrastructure also may either already exist (Cambridge) or be planned to accommodate future intensification of existing residential zones (Bradford). The only place this is true in the GTA West Corridor is Bolton.

Instead of trying to force more industrial development around the fringes of the Greenbelt, we ought to see how we can better use existing land. (Maybe 60-year-old office buildings with sprawling parking lots isn't the best thing to have right next to the 404...)
 

innsertnamehere

Superstar
Member Bio
Joined
Mar 8, 2010
Messages
15,142
Reaction score
10,582
Why is this development occurring in Cambridge and Bradford a bad thing again? These "further afield" settlements also need employment so people can work closer to home, and the infrastructure also may either already exist (Cambridge) or be planned to accommodate future intensification of existing residential zones (Bradford). The only place this is true in the GTA West Corridor is Bolton.

Instead of trying to force more industrial development around the fringes of the Greenbelt, we ought to see how we can better use existing land. (Maybe 60-year-old office buildings with sprawling parking lots isn't the best thing to have right next to the 404...)

Because those trucks now drive from Cambridge to Toronto to do deliveries instead of Vaughan to Toronto.

All it's doing is shifting the industrial uses from Vaughan to Cambridge, where it's further from customers and where it has a morel limited pool of employees.

All it's doing is pushing development further out, increasing transportation costs and emissions.

The answer to the issue of environmental protection is not in infrastructure - it's in land use. To reduce impacts you need to look at how to increase the compactness of commercial development. Amazon is building a 5 million square foot, 5 storey industrial warehouse in Ottawa right now for example - that's far more land efficient than what is industry standard. Trying to limit sprawl by not providing the infrastructure is not going to work, it's just going to push demand where it is permitted. you have to fix the land use permissions and demands.

The issue too is that Toronto has some of the highest growth pressures in the western world. Looking at cities in Europe with marginal population growth is not as easy of a comparison - the demand for space is just nowhere close to Toronto. A city that adds 100k+ people a year is naturally going to need more land - you have to try to minimize that need, but you aren't rationally going to get around that need. And you have to plan properly for that need, including properly servicing it with infrastructure.
 
Last edited:

jelbana

Active Member
Member Bio
Joined
Jul 18, 2020
Messages
161
Reaction score
357
The answer to the issue of environmental protection is not in infrastructure - it's in land use. To reduce impacts you need to look at how to increase the compactness of commercial development. Amazon is building a 5 million square foot, 5 storey industrial warehouse in Ottawa right now for example - that's far more land efficient than what is industry standard. Trying to limit sprawl by not providing the infrastructure is not going to work, it's just going to push demand where it is permitted. you have to fix the land use permissions and demands.

The issue too is that Toronto has some of the highest growth pressures in the western world. Looking at cities in Europe with marginal population growth is not as easy of a comparison - the demand for space is just nowhere close to Toronto. A city that adds 100k+ people a year is naturally going to need more land - you have to try to minimize that need, but you aren't rationally going to get around that need. And you have to plan properly for that need, including properly servicing it with infrastructure.

Ideally this is what careful analysis would study, and would motivate government policy. Unfortunately, we've seen that what is pushing the desire to build this highway is far more closely related to who owns land on this strech, and who is friends with the Ford government.
 

ConformistsWake

New Member
Member Bio
Joined
Jan 11, 2016
Messages
9
Reaction score
10
I will say reading through everyone recent points that I understand why people are opposed to sprawl and their aspirations with intensifying growth within existing built up areas - however the current planning framework for the region doesn't align with that approach. The current plans stipulate that there will be development 100'000s of people and jobs in the whitebelt along the proposed highway route. I think there is healthy discussion on the merits for the highway if those lands are built in a dense transit oriented form, but unless the province and GTA municipalities make a major policy shift to open up the vast majority of existing neighbourhoods for infill development there is going to be a continued demand for these lands to satisfy growth. Is Toronto ready to open up the yellowbelt to allow for this? We cannot continue to do major development solely on existing employment lands - this is noted in the province's move to protect employment lands recently and in the discussion above about existing supply constraints.

Are the political mechanisms in the province capable (or willing) to even take a step back and evaluate the highway on these merits. We can't fight against the development of this area without simultaneously making huge changes to our infill policies and I don't know if anyone is actively pushing for that?
 

ericmacm

Active Member
Member Bio
Joined
Dec 31, 2015
Messages
384
Reaction score
655
Location
Windsor
There are too many moving parts and plans all at play to actively prevent sprawl from happening in these areas - Brampton, Caledon, Halton, and Vaughan all intend on developing these lands, with or without the 413. Expecting these regions to fully cooperate in a regional approach that would redirect potential residents from their whitebelt regions to others like Toronto and Mississauga is just unrealistic - as it would not be within their best interests. There should be more focus on ensuring proper land use and denser, transit-oriented-development along the 413 is followed, as opposed to just preventing it altogether. Once these regions are packed with residents and industrial development in 30 years, a highway will be essential, like it or not. I'd personally rather have it built now while the land is empty and cheap and land use can be appropriately planned around the highway, as opposed to being much more expensive later on and potentially having to go fully through the greenbelt, causing more impact to the environment and emerging justification for the removal of protections.
 

Towered

Senior Member
Member Bio
Joined
Apr 24, 2007
Messages
6,021
Reaction score
4,500
Because those trucks now drive from Cambridge to Toronto to do deliveries instead of Vaughan to Toronto.

All it's doing is shifting the industrial uses from Vaughan to Cambridge, where it's further from customers and where it has a morel limited pool of employees.

All it's doing is pushing development further out, increasing transportation costs and emissions.

The answer to the issue of environmental protection is not in infrastructure - it's in land use. To reduce impacts you need to look at how to increase the compactness of commercial development. Amazon is building a 5 million square foot, 5 storey industrial warehouse in Ottawa right now for example - that's far more land efficient than what is industry standard. Trying to limit sprawl by not providing the infrastructure is not going to work, it's just going to push demand where it is permitted. you have to fix the land use permissions and demands.

The issue too is that Toronto has some of the highest growth pressures in the western world. Looking at cities in Europe with marginal population growth is not as easy of a comparison - the demand for space is just nowhere close to Toronto. A city that adds 100k+ people a year is naturally going to need more land - you have to try to minimize that need, but you aren't rationally going to get around that need. And you have to plan properly for that need, including properly servicing it with infrastructure.

There's lots of yellow belt land available within Toronto ;)
 

allengeorge

Active Member
Member Bio
Joined
Jun 27, 2019
Messages
574
Reaction score
1,192
There should be more focus on ensuring proper land use and denser, transit-oriented-development along the 413 is followed, as opposed to just preventing it altogether.
Yeah - I don’t buy this.

We can’t simultaneously say that “the current planning regime encourages sprawl” and then imagine that the land around the 413 isn’t going to follow this pattern. There’s absolutely no proof that somehow, bucking decades of low-density development in that area, we’re going to build dense spaces next to a highway.
 

innsertnamehere

Superstar
Member Bio
Joined
Mar 8, 2010
Messages
15,142
Reaction score
10,582
The whole cycle of delivering windfall profits to developers stinks and is a breeding ground for corruption.
"The whole cycle of delivering housing in a housing shortage stinks"

Too often developers are made out to be evil - they are just delivering a product like every other company.

Also, this highway isn't really going to deliver windfall profits. These lands are all zoned for development regardless - developers are going to build no matter what. They don't care if buyers have to drive through traffic or not.

The windfall for developers comes when they get development permissions, not when a highway is built nearby. MZOs have been windfalls for developers, as they give them development permissions right away without appeal and often allow them to skip years of planning. Makes them very, very rich. A highway? Not so much. Developers actually dislike the project as it takes development land away from them, if anything, and has delayed development in this area by a decade now as it froze development along the corridor while MTO determined the preferred alignment.
 
Last edited:

Top