City planning is a process that helps us manage how land and resources are used to make our city a more inviting and liveable place. It helps us decide where homes, businesses, parks and schools should be located and where roads, transit, sewers and other essential services are needed.
City planning helps us shape and develop our communities while keeping economic, social and environmental concerns in mind. It is both a technical and political process:
City planning is about managing change. As the city grows, and new developments come forward, planners must use their technical skills, logic and creativity to envision different ways that make our city a great place for both residents and businesses.
In general, there are two types of city planning projects: city-led policies and studies or development applications. The roles and responsibilities vary based on the type of project.
The City’s policy planners help set the vision for how land will be used in our city and neighbourhoods. The studies and policies they work on guide how and where future building and development should happen. Roles typically include:
The City’s development planners are responsible for reviewing all applications for changes to the use of land, the design of new buildings, changes to existing buildings and all other forms of new development. They make sure that new developments meet the City’s vision for how land should be used.
Development applications like official plan amendments, rezonings and site plans are initiated by developers, business owners or landowners. Roles typically include:
Here is more detail about the role of each key stakeholder involved in city planning:
Land or property owners have the right to decide if and when to build something new on their land. They can also choose to sell their property which can trigger a change in how the land is used.
Builders and developers are typically private companies that specialize in different types of developments such as:
Community members contribute local knowledge and insights connected to specific areas of our city. Community members include:
Independent adjudicative tribunal responsible for resolving appeals on a variety of contentious municipal and land use planning matters.
The Region of Peel is an upper-tier regional government which plans for and provides services to the three lower-tier municipalities within its borders: City of Mississauga, City of Brampton, and the Town of Caledon. Services include:
City planners assess many issues and perspectives to determine if the threshold of good planning has been met.
It’s common for residents to feel that an application will be refused if there’s opposition to it. However, a variety of studies and policies, including direction from the Province of Ontario and the City’s entire Official Plan, must also be considered.
Planners manage growth in a smart and sustainable way. They plan for growth and intensification while demonstrating supporting analysis and good planning. They also specialize in policy and development planning:
All city planners have a commitment to the Professional Code of Conduct and have to practice ethically and responsibly. The concept of democracy is an important part of public decision-making and planners apply this lens when planning for Mississauga’s future.
These are the policies that planners need to follow and that shape our community:
The Provincial Policy Statement (PPS) promotes Ontario’s long term prosperity and social well-being by:
The Provincial Growth Plan is grounded in the following principles:
A zoning by-law implements the objectives and policies of the Official Plan and provides a legal and precise way of managing land use and future development. Zoning protects you from conflicting and possibly dangerous land uses in your community.
Weighing all of these inputs guides us in making responsible recommendations in city planning.