PUSLINCH – With the Township of Puslinch not satisfied its concerns over Guelph’s Clair-Maltby Secondary Plan are being adequately addressed, the two municipalities could be heading to the Ontario Land Tribunal (OLT).
In a report out from a closed meeting on June 6, Puslinch council directed staff to file an appeal with the OLT and “take all necessary steps in pursuit thereof with respect to the outstanding concerns raised by the township regarding the City of Guelph’s Official Plan Amendment 79, the Clair-Maltby Secondary Plan.”
The Clair-Maltby plan dictates residential density, building heights, floor space, housing types, transportation plans and other development on 414 hectares of land at the south end of Guelph on the border with Puslinch.
Guelph city council approved the plan in May.
Early that same month, Puslinch council passed a recommendation formally objecting to its approval due to concerns raised by the township not being adequately addressed.
A report cited concerns over a lack of commitment in implementing long-term water monitoring and protecting Township resident’s water source, the wording around minimum set back and landscape requirements in the urban-rural transition area, and planning comments submitted for a September 2021 public meeting not being acknowledged.
To respond to concerns around groundwater, Guelph deputy CAO Jayne Holmes said in an email the city is proposing a monitoring strategy which includes two wells near the Puslinch boundary.
In regards to set backs, Holmes said the plan encourages them but there aren't any specific setbacks "to allow for future draft plan of subdivision and zoning bylaw amendment processes to be able to respond to grading and site specific conditions."
Puslinch CAO Glenn Schwendinger said in an email the township continues to work with the city and they are hopeful a resolution can be achieved before reaching a formal hearing.
“Given that some concerns remained outstanding and the deadline for filing an appeal was approaching, Puslinch council decided to file the appeal to ensure that the opportunity to have the concerns addressed is not lost,” Schwendinger said.
Schwendinger said following the June 6 Puslinch meeting the township received correspondence back from Guelph which is being reviewed by staff and consultants.
Holmes said the goal is to have an agreement on how to move forward so the township may consider withdrawing the appeal.