Dear Heron Park Community,

City council will soon vote on whether to expand the city’s urban boundary. The HPCA executive is against this expansion. Expansion will pave over farms and forests, increasing sprawl. Sprawl offloads living costs onto homeowners by requiring car ownership, and onto us as property taxpayers by increasing long-term infrastructure costs. Most important of all is the negative impact this sprawl has on the climate. The city has declared a climate emergency and they should treat climate change with the seriousness it demands.

Holding the line of development where it stands is easily doable and desirable. Building up instead of out will involve building on land we already have, such big open spaces like Lebreton flats, low density commercial space like Billings Bridge mall, or intensifying existing communities within the greenbelt. It’s very possible to fit a lot more people into Ottawa’s existing urban boundary. It’s not like Ottawa is inventing city life, there are examples from Canada and around the world of how to build great communities.

Dense or intensified communities come with tons of benefits, like lower infrastructure costs, more businesses and workplaces within a walk, and more opportunities for ourselves and our kids to make friends. We know that so much rests on communities being built well. We will always fight to make sure intensification in Heron Park comes with the benefits we want, yet now is the time to specifically demand that the city not expand the boundary. Once the boundary is maintained, we can move on to demanding the city support and build great communities.

Please visit Ecology Ottawa’s Hold the Line page and sign their petition if you agree with their position.

Our councillor is a firm supporter of holding the line, so please ask your friends who live outside the greenbelt to consider the issue and petition their councillor.

The Heron Park Community Association Executives

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