UNDERSTANDING OUR OFFICIAL PLAN AMENDMENT APPLICATION

The application for an Official Plan Amendment seeks to implement our vision, which was informed by thousands of community voices,  for the redevelopment of the site.  The anticipated decommissioning of the Bombardier airfield provides a truly unique opportunity to reconsider the potential of such a large and strategically located site in the centre of a growing city and region.

The Official Plan Amendment is our proposal to the City to implement the proposed Framework and identify the planning policies that we would like Council to adopt to provide direction for the redevelopment of the site.   

Why does this application matter?

What does the application seek to change?

Development on these lands is currently governed by the 2011 Downsview Area Secondary Plan and Site and Area Specific Policy No. 596 (SASP 596). SASP 596 recently changed the permitted land uses in this area and guides how the Downsview Secondary Plan will be updated in this upcoming review. The application to amend the Official Plan and update the local Secondary Plan is consistent with the direction of SASP 596. 

The following documents were included in the application to amend the Official Plan.

A Focus on SASP 596

Site and Area Specific Policy No. 596 changed  the land use under the Official Plan for most of the site from “Core Employment Areas” to “Regeneration Areas” and “General Employment”. More generally, SASP 596 guides how to update the Downsview Area Secondary Plan. It provides direction on matters such as: the minimum amount of non-residential uses and how this is to be phased with residential uses; how the use of District Plans should be developed; and minimum requirements for affordable housing. 

 

SASP 596 also ensures that certain planning matters are addressed as part of the process of updating the Downsview Area Secondary Plan. For example, SASP 596provides direction regarding the preparation of an updated land use plan, the preparation of a public realm plan illustrating parks and open spaces and identifying new streets and active transportation routes, and the preparation of plans and studies addressing matters such as land use compatibility, rail safety, transportation, community services and recreation facilities, and phasing. It also requires engagement and consultation to be part of the process before the land use permissions are updated.

What is in the Application?

The application seeks to guide the physical development of this place through the planning process. Other work extends beyond just the planning process.

We have a guide to the planning process here. You can also read more about how participant feedback shaped our application and Framework Plan here.  

Our entire application will soon be available on the City of Toronto’s website. Below, we outline the materials submitted as part of the application, what they are, and why they matter. 

01. Framework Plan, prepared by Henning Larsen Architects, KPMB Architects, Urban Strategies Inc. SLA, Ramboll, Transsolar, BA Group, Arup Group, and Purpose Building and dated September 27, 2021


This document provides the vision for the Subject Lands at Downsview and articulates the key organizing elements to support complete, connected communities at a high level. It supports the proposed Official Plan Amendment and also includes other ideas for further exploration for when more detailed planning and development unfolds over time. You can learn more about the development of the Framework Plan here.




02. Official Plan Amendment, prepared by Urban Strategies Inc and dated September 27, 2021


This is the proposed amendment to the Downsview Area Secondary Plan for the Subject Lands. It includes policies and schedules to implement the core elements of the Framework Plan and guide development over time. In addition to policies that apply broadly to the Subject Lands, it proposes direction for further details to be provided through District Plans.




03. Planning Justification Report including Planning Rationale, prepared by Urban Strategies Inc. and dated September 27, 2021


This is a report that provides background context, an overview of the purpose and effect of the application, and a planning opinion on the proposed Official Plan Amendment. It identifies how the proposal addresses key provincial and municipal planning policies.




04. Community Services and Facilities Study, prepared by Urban Strategies Inc. and dated September 27, 2021


This report outlines an inventory of certain existing community services and facilities in the area surrounding the Subject Lands. It describes what was heard during the consultation process as it relates to the community’s needs, and makes recommendation for additional engagement on these topics going forward.




05. Public Consultation Strategy Report, prepared by Swerhun Inc. and dated September 2021


This report documents the consultation undertaken prior to the application, and describes the landowners’ approach to ongoing consultation and engagement.




06. Stage 1 Archaeological Assessment prepared by Archeological Services Inc and dated March 30, 2020


This report provides an overview of areas of archaeological potential on the Downsview Lands (an area larger than the Subject Lands) based on prior studies and previously registered archaeological resources, and recommended next steps.




07. Cultural Heritage Resource Assessment prepared by ERA Architects and dated September 27, 2021


This report provides a review of heritage resources on the Downsview Lands (an area larger than the Subject Lands) including information sheets and a built resource matrix and recommended next steps.




08. Housing Issues Report, prepared by NBLC and dated September 2021


This report provides an overview of housing issues in the area and how the housing policies of the Downsview Area Secondary Plan have been implemented to date. It includes recommended policies for the proposed Amendment.




09. Economic Impact Assessment, prepared by NBLC and dated September 2021


This report provides an assessment of the effects the proposed development could have on economic activities and other business activities in the area, and the city, over its 30-year build out.




10. Land Use Compatibility and Mitigation Study, prepared by SLR and dated September 2021


This report examines potential air quality, dust, odour, noise, and vibration impacts from road and rail sources and from nearby industrial land uses that could affect the proposed development of the Subject Lands, and recommends potential mitigation measures and process to be implemented via more detailed planning processes.




11. Rail Safety and Risk Mitigation Report, prepared by Arup and dated September 27, 2021


This report reviews the proposed land uses in proximity to the rail corridor and sets out potential approaches to rail safety to mitigate potential risks and to demonstrate that the Subject Lands are suitable for the proposed development.




12. Draft Master Environmental Servicing Plan prepared by Arup, BA Group, and Golder Associates and dated September 27, 2021.


The Draft Master Environmental Servicing Plan (MESP) is a comprehensive document that includes technical reports to support the principles in the Framework Plan and the proposed Official Plan Amendment. It includes analysis on: natural heritage; transportation, stormwater, water/wastewater, energy/electricity and soil conditions.

The Draft MESP provides an analysis of the existing conditions and the proposed plan for future infrastructure; however, additional analysis will be undertaken in close collaboration with City staff which will be re-issued as the Final MESP.

Natural Heritage

Based on desktop and site reviews, plant and animal communities in a broader study area were classified. The report identifies the vegetated areas within the Subject Lands as limited to blocks of mowed/manicured lawn which generally have poor value as wildlife habitat.

Transportation The transportation chapter of the MESP provides an analysis of: mobility policy and the infrastructure planning context; existing traffic operations; and, an evaluation of mobility network alternatives. It provides technical analysis of the proposed mobility network in the Framework Plan, demonstrating that it can feasibly accommodate the projected traffic demand from population and employment growth while promoting a shift toward more sustainable modes of transportation. Stormwater Management

The stormwater component of the MESP focuses on the importance of a nature-based stormwater management approach that is efficient, resilient and sustainable.

Water/Wastewater This section of the MESP describes the potable water and sanitary sewer system proposed for the Subject Lands. It includes an analysis of the existing water and sanitary services and an initial analysis of opportunities and constraints to support future growth. Energy and Electrical

This chapter of the MESP reviews different energy supply options and parameters that will support demand for energy and electricity as the lands are built out.

Geotechnical, Hydrogeological and Environmental This section of the MESP focuses on soil and groundwater conditions as they relate to infrastructure planning and development.




13. Boundary Plan and Survey and Topographic Survey, prepared by JD Barnes and dated September, 2021


These plans identify the boundaries of the Subject Lands and their topography.







The City of Toronto will be seeking feedback from the public about this application. Read all the details on the City’s website and learn more about how the id8 process shaped this application on our Progress page.

Share your thoughts.