THE PLANNING PROCESSThe Planning Act establishes a number of tools and regulations as part of the land development process.
Township of Scugog Official PlanThe Official Plan is the basic blueprint that shows how the Township is intended to grow over an approximate twenty-year time frame. It is based on a coordinated public consultative process with the result being defined as the actions anticipated by the Township and its citizens to achieve specific growth objectives.
The Official Plan:
- Establishes, through policies and maps, where and how development can occur, while safeguarding the natural and man-made features.
- Provides a guide for the provisions of infrastructure such as sewers, water, roads and related services and utilities.
- Represents a guide by which the merits of a development proposal can be assessed.
- Adapts the broad land use planning concepts of senior levels of government (Provincial Planning guidelines and policies and the Durham Region Official Plan) to the local (Township) conditions.
Contents of the Township's Official PlanThe Official Plan contains a number of sections, which are briefly described as follows:
Foundations of the Plan: an overview of the basic principles and planning framework inherent in the Township's model for future development:
- The growth for the rural areas to the year 2021 will be similar to the past 20 years. Port Perry is intended as the primary recipient of new growth.
- New development will preserve the quality of life and the quality of the environment.
- The existing community character of Port Perry will be reflected in the built form of new development.
- The environmental and growth management policies will enhance the Township's financial, health and economic opportunities.
Rural Areas: The general objectives, location (Schedule A), uses, severance and development policies to assist Council in reviewing development proposals are detailed within the following land use designations: Agricultural Reserve areas, General Agricultural areas, Country Neighbourhood areas, Country Residential areas, Hamlets, Shoreline areas, Aggregate areas, Greenlands System.
Port Perry Urban Area: The general principles and policies, location (Schedule A- 1), uses, development and staging policies to guide Council in considering the merits of proposals are detailed within the land use designation framework: Residential, Main Central Area, Community Commercial, Neighbourhood Commercial, Employment Lands, Open Space, Hazard Lands. In addition, Urban Design Policies establish general principles, objectives and standards as a guide for the built form within Port Perry.
Transportation and Utilities: A statement of the general principles, objectives and standards for the existing and future road, transit, pedestrian and utility corridors.
In addition, a section on Development Criteria details the specific policies and standards, applicable to the entire Township, to guide Council in its review of the merits of development proposals. These policies focus on two significant areas.
Environmental Management, which deals with: Stormwater Management, Development Affecting Steep Slopes and Ravines, Water Quality, Water Quantity, Flood Plains, Forest Areas, Fisheries, Habitat Areas, Waste Disposal Areas, Oak Ridges Moraine.
Growth Management: rate, location, and form.
The implementation section describes the general policies and regulations to carry out the Plan, including the use of the attached Schedules/Maps and appendices, which provide a visual guide to the policies. The various tools used to implement the provisions of the Official Plan are described in detail. These include Zoning By- Laws, Holding Category or Holding By-Laws, Interim Control By-Laws, Temporary Use By-Laws, Site Plan Control, and Development Agreements.
Official Plan Amendments (OPA)Amendments are made to the Official Plan due to the changing needs of the Township, a rezoning application that is inconsistent with the policies or land use designations of the Plan, special studies, Provincial Studies and Policy Statements, or Regional Official Plan Amendments.
The Region of Durham is the approval authority for local OPA's, however, the Region has implemented a new policy in that if the local OPA meets certain criteria established by the Commissioner of Planning, then they may be exempt from Regional approval.
Public InvolvementIt is the intent of the Official Plan to ensure those affected by any proposed change to the Plan are made aware of the proposal and are given an opportunity to express their views. In this regard, the public is notified of the proposed change, and given a chance to express their views:
- To the Township Council
- To the Regional Municipality of Durham via the relevant Committee structure.