The City of Kitchener, is embarking on an innovative project called Growing Together, which is aimed at creating a more inclusive, connected, and sustainable city by engaging residents and stakeholders in the process of planning for growth around the ION LRT system.
Intensification around transit is a core fundamental principle of Ontario’s planning framework. It has been since the introduction of the Places to Grow and Greenbelt Acts in 2005. These areas have been identified as Major Transit Station Areas (MTSAs) by the Region of Waterloo. Growing Together is a planning-led project designed to bring forward updates to the City’s Official Plan and Zoning by-law in MTSA areas.
One of the key features of the project is its focus on community engagement. The City of Kitchener has been working closely with local organizations and residents to identify the most pressing needs and opportunities in each neighborhood. This has involved a range of activities, including community consultations, surveys, and workshops, including soliciting feedback through the use of a 3D printed city model. Dayna from Q9 Planning attended a workshop in late March, engaged with the 3D model and shared comments and feedback with staff.
Overall, the Growing Together project is an exciting and innovative approach to building stronger, more connected communities. By engaging residents and stakeholders in the process of designing and implementing community-driven initiatives, the City of Kitchener is creating a more inclusive, sustainable, and vibrant city for all its residents.
It is anticipated that the draft Official Plan and Zoning will be released in the Summer for comment and will go to Planning Committee in December for approval.
More information can be found here