Chamber music to be performed amidst a setting of ceramics from the AGB permanent collection.

artsorange 100x100By Staff

January 15, 2015


The Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra has once again partnered with the Art Gallery of Burlington to bring a professional orchestra into an inspirational and beautiful environment for a 60 minute chamber concert.

The Gallery Series brings the HPO String Quartet into the room where the current ceramic exhibition Still Life – Landscape, from the Permanent Collection is being displayed.

The HPO String Quartet will perform glistening and harmonious works written for violins, viola and cello.

HPO with girlLaunched in the winter of 2015, the Gallery Series brings a regional local art galleries and professional orchestra together to create intimate, 60-minute chamber concerts within the setting of the current ceramic exhibition Still Life – Landscape, from the Permanent Collection.

Following the performance, Art Gallery of Burlington Chief Curator Denis Longchamps provides an introduction to the exhibition before inviting guests to join HPO musicians and Gallery staff for a reception.

“I’m thrilled to perform with my colleagues at the Art Gallery of Burlington,” says HPO violinist Cecilia Chang. “Having the opportunity to play great string quartet music in an intimate and beautiful setting is an exciting change of atmosphere for those of us who regularly perform in large concert halls. Having great art around us as we perform is an added bonus!”

The performance is hosted by HPO composer-in-residence Abigail Richardson-Schulte who provides context for each musical selection on the program.

Wednesday, January 20 at 7:30pm
Art Gallery of Burlington
1333 Lakeshore Rd., Burlington
Featuring the HPO String Quartet.
Reception following the concert. Cash Bar.

The Gallery Series is a FREE concert series with donations gladly accepted at the door. Seating is limited seating and on a first-come, first-served basis. Doors open one hour prior to the concert starting.

BAC outdoors from the east side

Art Gallery of Burlington

The Art Gallery of Burlington is an award winning gallery located in the heart of Burlington, Ontario. They stage as many as 20 regional, national and international exhibitions a year, and are home to the world’s largest acclaimed collection of Canadian contemporary ceramics and seven art and fine craft guilds. An interactive and creative space, the AGB provides arts and craft education programs and public tours for people of all ages. Spanning over 44,000 square feet, our space boasts seven equipped art studios, three galleries, a one of a kind gift shop, an exhibition courtyard and year-round conservatory.

The Art Gallery of Burlington is located at 1333 Lakeshore Rd, Burlington, ON L7S 1A9
Gallery Hours:
Monday: 9:00 am – 6:00 pm
Tuesday – Thursday: 9:00 am – 10:00 pm
Friday – Saturday: 9:00 am – 5:00 pm
Sunday: 12 noon – 5:00 pm

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Economical Insurance contributes $10,000 to Art Gallery of Burlington Kid’s Programming.

artsorange 100x100By Staff

January 14, 2016


Economical Insurance has generously donated $10,000 to the Art Gallery of Burlington (AGB) and has been named Contributing Sponsor to Children’s Programming, in association with their broker partner and fellow AGB contributor Dan Lawrie.

AGB kids withj art

Participants in one of the children’s art classes.

The Art Gallery of Burlington has a very active and robust program for children that has enables over 6,000 taking part in art education programming, including financial assistance, free open studios, affordable classes and camps, and school outreach.

Chiara Frigeni, a therapist, with ROCK Reach Out Centre for Kids, explains that the role arts education plays in children’s lives is vital to their development “I often see less anxiety, less rigidity, more self-confidence, and more ability to have fun and be with peers in children and adolescents when they start attending courses at the AGB.”

Robert Steven, President and CEO of the Art Gallery of Burlington accepted a $10,000 gift from Joe Pansino, Business Development Advisor at Economical Insurance.

Dan Lawrie put up a significant portion of the money needed to pay for the creation of the Spiral Stella. It's coming along just fine and Dan is a happy camper.

Dan Lawrie – arts benefactor.

Dan Lawrie of Dan Lawrie Insurance Brokers, a broker partner with Economical attended. Lawrie recently donated a significant sum for the installation of a major piece of stone sculpture created by Walter Rickli.

Lawrie was also a contributor to the Spiral Stella that is outside the Performing Arts Centre.

Gallery Hours:
Monday: 9:00 am – 6:00 pm
Tuesday – Thursday: 9:00 am – 10:00 pm
Friday – Saturday: 9:00 am – 5:00 pm
Sunday: 12 noon – 5:00 pm


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Gas station robbers arrested and held for a bail hearing.

Crime 100By Staff

January 14th, 2016


That was fast.

The Esso Station on Guelph Line at Derry Road was robbed early Wednesday – before the sun had set on Thursday two males were in custody and heading for a bail hearing.

Two males were arrested and have been charged in relation to an early morning robbery at the Esso Gas Station. The accused persons are:

Jacob DEMARSH (age 27) of Milton, Ontario
Andrew SMITH (age 25) of Sylvan Lake, Alberta

Charged with:

Esso - Guelph and Derry

Esso gas station at Guelph Line and Derry Road robbed – two males arrested less than 36 hours later.

-Theft of Motor Vehicle
-Possession of Stolen Property- Over $5000
-Wear disguise with intent (DEMARSH only)

DEMARSH and SMITH have been held for a bail hearing and will appear in the Ontario Court of Justice in Milton on Friday January 15th 2016.

The same gas station was robbed in July of 2011

Anyone with further information in this case is encouraged to contact Detective Phil Vandenbeukel at 905 825-4747 extension 2343 or Crime Stoppers at 1 800 222-TIPS (8477), through the web at or by texting “Tip201” with your message to 274637 (crimes).

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Residents want Nelson stadium to undergo more than a face lift - the want to see it become a world class facility.

News 100 blueBy Pepper Parr

January 14, 2016


It was described as the only decent sized stadium in the city – if you wanted something like it you had to drive to Guelph or Mississauga; the Nelson Stadium User Group, formed in the late 1990s wants the city to climb into bed with them and give the stadium a major overhaul.

The delegation, headed up by one of the strongest community groups this writer has seen in some time, was led by Janeen Stodulski – and she meant business.  They presented a very detailed proposal that was supported by a motion from Councillor Jack Dennison to:

Direct the Director of Parks and Recreation and the Executive Director of Capital Works, in partnership with the Halton District School Board, to work with the Nelson Stadium User Group on their proposed Nelson Stadium Revitalization project including vision, scope and future budget impacts, and in order to move this project forward,

Direct the Director of Parks and Recreation and the Executive Director of Capital Works to work with the Halton District School Board, and report back with as much detail as possible by April 7, 2016, so that we can be prepared for the next meeting with the Nelson Stadium User Group scheduled for April 21, 2016.

The pastWhat was interesting is that most members of council agreed that there was a lot of work to be done but there had never been a proposal come forward from the Parks and Recreation department.

The property on which the stadium is located is owned in some instances by the city and in others by the Halton Board of Education.

The presentThe Nelson Users Group has been working with the Board of Education and plans on that side are very well advanced. The council members didn’t really seem to be “in the room”. At one point the Mayor said he had been taken on a tour “two or three years ago” and that the stairs to the press box were dangerous then. The press box is no longer used.

Stodulski, who is charmingly aggressive, let it be known that she has Cogeco Cable TV down for a specific donation amount.

In the summer of 2011 through a joint partnership with the Halton District School Board (HDSB), Nelson Stadium User Group and City of Burlington, an artificial surface was installed at Nelson Stadium.

In 2013 the Nelson Stadium User Group expanded to include representation from all major user groups. This group has prepared a Proposal for Nelson Stadium outlining the needs, costs, upgrades and improvements required for the stadium, its facilities and surrounding areas. The Nelson Stadium User Group is requesting to again work with the HDSB and City and provide the much-needed improvements to Nelson Stadium – improvements to make our city’s one and only stadium a World Class Sports Facility.

Change rooms

Architects rendering of what a club house – change room could look like.

Nelson is the only Football and Hardball Stadium and home to various associations in the city. It is the only stadium that can accommodate larger number of spectator viewing, has dedicated change rooms for visiting and home teams and a press box.

Unfortunately, the facilities are now in dire need of improvements and upgrades. The people behind this project, and this is something that is being driven by the community not led by either the school board or the city, want to turn Nelson Stadium into a World Class Sports Facility

Nelson Stadium’s track and multipurpose sports fields are located at the west end of Nelson Park, off  Belvenia Street and is the first general gateway into a sport corridor.  Adjacent to the stadium one can stroll past baseball p arks, an outdoor pool, an indoor ice rink, soccer pitches, BMX Park and tennis courts. All linked by walkways and bike paths a cross bridges and streams: A gem of a sport corridor in the City of Burlington.

Press box

Rendering of what a press box could look like.

Paying for all this may not be all that difficult.  The Director of Parks and Recreation explained that there were “small pockets of money here and there” that could be used and the user groups were quite prepared to get into joint ventures with the city to raise some of the funds.

Wonderful to see the drive coming from the community – council needs to just raise their hands and vote yes and let these people get on with what they have set out to do.  We are lucky to have them.




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Live and Play catalogue being delivered - registrations begin later this month.

News 100 greenBy Staff

January 14, 2016


The city is distributing the 2016 Live & Play recreation catalogue and advises that registration for Spring programs for participants 0 to 18 years of age begins Saturday, Jan. 23, 2016 at 9:00 am

Live and play spring 2016Registration for March Break and Summer Camps begins at 11:00 a.m.

On Saturday, Feb. 27, 2016, 9:00 a.m. registration for Adults 18+, Adults 55+ and Fitness programs begins.

The catalogue is on line

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One more day added to Professional development days for teachers

News 100 yellowBy Staff

January 14th, 2016


The Halton District School Board is adding an Professional Activity Day to the school calendar – Friday, April 8, 2016 is the day you will have to find something else for the kids to do.

April 8The additional day is part of the negotiated terms bargained between the Ministry of Education and the federations representing Ontario teachers.

Schools will be closed to students and there will be no classes on Friday, April 8, 2016. This date has been added to the School Year Calendar posted on the Board’s website.

The Easter holiday is at the end of March.

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Esso gas station in rural North Burlington robbed yesterday and in 2011

Crime 100By Staff

January 14th, 2016


Early yesterday morning, a lone male entered the Esso gas station located at 6783 Guelph Line in Burlington and demanded money from the clerk while having his hand in his pocket insinuating a weapon being present.

Esso - Guelph and Derry

This Esso station seems to be a favorite with the robbers – held up yesterday and in July of 2011

The clerk complied and turned over an undisclosed amount of cash from the till to the suspect who fled North out of the store and out of sight.

No vehicle observed by the clerk and the clerk was not injured.

The suspect is described as:

male/Caucasian, 20-30 years of age, 5”3-5”6 in height, approximately 140-150 pounds, slim build, blue/green eyes and light colored facial hair (approximately 2-3 days growth). The suspect was wearing a black/white plaid scarf around his face, red toque with a “Hockey night” blue emblem on the front, black jacket with hood and black pants.

The same gas station was robbed in July of 2011. A light blue box pick was used as the getaway vehicle then and we asked if there was a video. Was there a video this time?

Anyone with information that would assist in locating the suspect vehicle or identifying the suspect are encouraged to contact Detective Phil Vandenbeukel at 905 825-4747 extension 2343 or Crime Stoppers at 1 800 222-TIPS (8477), through the web at or by texting “Tip201” with your message to 274637 (crimes).

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Resident doesn't think Strategic plan public sessions are going to make any difference - gives them a poor mark.

opinionandcommentBy Vince Fiorito

January 13th, 2016


At the beginning of each new term, the City of Burlington Council develops a strategic plan, which reflects Council’s vision and strategic priorities for its term of office and beyond. A strategic plan is a document that provides a framework for future City of Burlington decision making and resource allocation. The result should be a document with specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and time bound objectives and key performance indicators.

Strategic Plan Workbook

Strategic Plans are usually four year plans prepared by a city council.

The process to develop the City of Burlington’s 9th Strategic Plan started in December 2014 and should have been completed by December 2015.

This document should take less than a year to consult all stakeholders for input, develop a draft version for consultation and feedback, before City Council ratifies the final version.

Here we are in 2016, and the city still has a few more public consultations to complete and a significant amount of stakeholder input to process before a final version can be put to a vote before city council. I suppose better late than never.

If you plan to attend one of the public sessions, don’t expect to have much time to add your ideas. The format is to divide the audience up into five groups and rotate through five stations, each with a topic to discuss and a communication facilitator. New ideas are welcome, but you will have to compete for time with other participants. I recommend being prepared to submit your ideas to the session moderator in a written format at the end of the session in case time constraints restrict your ability to share your ideas.

As much as I would like to feel warm and fuzzy about how good the City of Burlington is, we do not having a strategy to address invasive species, pollution, climate change and other problems which threaten our natural heritage system.

Sheldon Creek dump 2

Trash dumped into creek ravines.

The City of Burlington has about 20 urban creek valleys which run through the heart of our city. These areas are currently neglected, overrun with invasive species, littered with hundreds of tons of trash and contaminated with fertilizer and road salt residue.

Fish from Sheldon creek

Fish from Sheldon creek

Despite these serious problems, Burlington’s urban creek system act as wildlife corridors and support a wide diversity of native species including trout, salmon, mink and great blue heron.

Clearly the city could add the  Green Belt objectives and our urban creeks to the Strategic Plan, but, for whatever reason, has chosen to continue to neglect these urban green spaces within walking distance of most city residents.

Vince Fitorio

Conservation Halton made Vince Fiorito a watershed steward – Sheldon Creek is his territory.

I live on Sheldon Creek and founded the Friends of Sheldon Creek Stewardship organization. Ideally I’d like every resident and business adjacent to one of Burlington’s urban creeks to be considered waterfront property.  I am disappointed that the strategic plan has no plan to protect, conserve and restore these natural areas. It’s not like I haven’t tried to raise awareness. I’ve submitted the above information as a delegation to city council and to the Sustainable Development Committee. What does that say about Burlington as an Engaging City?

Another missing component in the Strategic Plan is Climate Change and a plan to reduce the city’s greenhouse gas emissions. The strategic plan states that by 2040 the “city’s operations are net carbon neutral”.

Hydro Cogen Hydro Sept 29-15

The hydro plans to increase micro-generation of electricity using natural gas, would increase the city’s greenhouse gas emissions.

However, the strategic plan lacks anything on how to achieve that objective. In fact, the city’s plans to increase micro-generation of electricity using natural gas, would increase the city’s greenhouse gas emissions.

Overall the draft of Burlington 2015-2040 Strategic report gets a C- in my opinion with an F on the environment.

The final public sessions for input to the Strategic Plan are:

Strategic Plan Open House
Jan 18, 2016 07:00 PM – 09:00 PM
LaSalle Park Pavillion

Strategic Plan Open House
Jan 18, 2016 07:00 PM – 09:00 PM
Mountainside Recreation Centre

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Snow update – Local sidewalk plowing is ongoing.

notices100x100Snow Update: Jan.13,2016 4:00pm
Road plowing is complete.

Local road sanding is ongoing.

Primary and secondary sidewalks have been completed.

Local sidewalk plowing is ongoing.

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The real scoop on the guy who is going to get that Golden Whistle -

News 100 blueBy Pepper Parr

January 13th, 2016


Ron Foxcroft, Hamilton, Ontario, president and founder of Fox 40 International, has been selected by the National Association of Sports Officials (NASO) as the recipient of this year’s Gold Whistle Award, which is officiating’s highest honor.

Foxcroft tight faceThe media release didn’t tell the whole story. Foxcroft and Queen Elizabeth II are buddies. Most people are “presented” to the Queen. Foxcroft explained to her how to use one of his whistles to shoo the Canadian geese off her lawns.

His wife Marie serves as his driver when he returns from an event where he is adjudicating referee performance – she drives while he writes up the report.

Foxcroft came close to serving as the referee at an event in British Columbia when Angelo Mosca got bopped by a former over an old grudge.

During the months after the 2014 flood in Burlington there wasn’t a banker in the province who really wanted to take a call from Foxcroft – he was in his arm twisting mode pulling cheques for flood relief. Pulled in just short of a million in 100 days for the Burlington Community  Foundation.  They made him a vice chair for that and come July he will be the full chair  What do you think he will do with that position?

Foxcroft whistle 2

Ron Foxcroft demonstrating the product.

The award will be presented Tuesday, Aug. 2, in San Antonio during the Celebrate Officiating Gala, which wraps up the 2016 Sports Officiating Summit. “A primary determinant in awarding anyone NASO’s Gold Whistle Award is this: The recipient has to have a long and meaningful history of ‘shining a positive light’ on officiating,” said Barry Mano, NASO president. “Further, any recipient must be someone who is held with some reverence within the officiating community of which he is a part. Ron Foxcroft was an easy choice, frankly.

“There are precious few individuals who place the wellbeing of sports officiating well in front of personal agenda or gain,” Mano added. “Members of this group have made outsized contributions to officiating. Ron is without doubt a member of that elite and critically important group. He is one of those unique individuals who, for decades, has fulfilled all of the requirements above. And, of course, he continues to do so.”

Although Foxcroft is best known as maker of the famous pealess whistle used by officials around the world, he has made his mark in the world in many other ways. As an NCAA and international basketball official, he worked five NCAA tournaments, an Olympic final and numerous other high level international games.

He has shone a positive light on the industry through his many charitable and leadership efforts, including serving as chair of the McMaster Campaign for Athletics & Recreation, founder and former chair of the Foxcroft Family Youth Fund held at the Hamilton Community Foundation and serving on the St. Joseph’s Healthcare Foundation fundraising committee, the first healthcare charity in Hamilton to earn the Canadian Centre for Philanthropy’s Ethical Fundraising License.

BCF Foxcroft H&S at mike

Foxcroft rousing the troops at the beginning of the Flood relief fund raising drive.

He donated thousands of Fox 40 Classic whistles used by search and rescue professionals when they were saving lives following the San Francisco earthquake, the Oklahoma City bombing, the 9/11 terrorist attacks, the Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami and Hurricanes Katrina and Wilma. Foxcroft has received awards from B’Nai Brith Canada and the Burlington (Ontario) Rotary Club.

Foxcroft was named Hamilton’s Distinguished Citizen of the Year, received an honorary doctor of law degree from McMaster University and had an award named for him by Sports Officials Canada. The award is presented annually to recognize excellence from an official in a professional sports environment, their contribution to the development of young officials and their example as a positive role model for officials by virtue of personal involvement at the community level.

Foxcroft and the Queen

Foxcroft with queen Elizabeth – is he explaining to her how his whistle works?

He is an honorary colonel in the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders, Canadian Army Reserve infantry battalion. After a member of his regiment was killed in a terrorist attack, Foxcroft met with Queen Elizabeth II and received her personal condolences.

Fox 40 received the Mel Narol Medallion Award in 2004, presented to a group or individual for outstanding contributions to NASO. Foxcroft is a former member of the NASO board of directors and currently serves as a special adviser to the board.


Did he make the shot? We’re not going to tell other than to say he doesn’t miss very much.

The Gold Whistle Award is presented annually by NASO. Those considered are individuals or groups that have made significant contributions to the betterment of officiating, exhibit a high degree of integrity and ethics and other qualities that are held in high regard by the industry. Candidates must have a consistent record of presenting officiating in a positive light as well as exhibiting a “service above self” attitude. Public service to officiating, having a motivating effect on others and/or strong community involvement are considered.

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100 woman are going to gather at Emmas Back Porch four times a year - check them out.

News 100 blueBy Staff

January 13th, 2016


The Gazette has written about the 100 Women Who Care Burlington. It is a simple concept whose impact is very powerful.

The goal is to raise $40,000 (or more) annually for local registered charities or their charitable programs that help Burlington residents live their lives to the fullest. This is done by gathering 100 women (or more) who commit to donating $100 (or more), four times per year. At each of their one hour meetings, nominations for charities and/or their programs are submitted by members for consideration of the group.

To expedite the process, of the nominations submitted, three are selected at random and of those, the nominators have an opportunity to pitch their cause to the members, after which a vote is taken, ballots counted and cheques written to the organization that receives the most votes.

Food4kids - bag + appleThe group is part of a grassroots movement that’s spreading rapidly across the globe. Men’s groups have also been formed (one is in the works for Burlington) and in some communities, the kids have been inspired to follow suit (with $10 donations).
Since their inaugural meeting in 2014, they have collectively donated in excess of $40,000 to:

Burlington Humane Society
– Halton Women’s Place
– Home Suite Hope
– Food4Kids
– Carpenter Hospice
– Alzheimer Society of Hamilton and Halton
– Community Living Burlington
– Friday Night Community (Wellington United Church)

Humane Society BurlingtonMore information about the group can be found at Their facebook page is
Meeting dates for 2016 are January 19, May 31, September 13 and November 29. All meetings this year will be held at Emma’s Back Porch at 2084 Old Lakeshore Rd.

Craig Kowalchuk and the team at Emmas Back Porch has a long history of giving back to the community and 100 Women Who Care Burlington are appreciative of their support in hosting our quarterly meetings this year.

Dermetics, a Burlington based business is sponsoring 10 of their staff as members. It’s been a fabulous way for their business to give back to the community, while involving their team as they contribute to the decisions on where the funds will be directed. Dermetics has also provided numerous door prizes and incentives to grow our membership.

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Public board of education trustees seem to want to get paid more - want to hire more educational assistants as well.

News 100 yellowBy Walter Byj

January 13th, 2016


The Halton District School Board started the year with an agenda that had few action items but a number of” For Action “and information points. This was going to be a quick, quick meeting

The first item was Trustee Collard’s (Burlington) Ombudsman motion which passed unanimously.

Collard Amy

Burlington trustee on the public Board of Education Amy Collard.

Be it resolved that the Halton District School Board trustees and staff review the current internal process for public complaints in light of the Office of the Ombudsman new mandate to investigate public complaints regarding school boards and report back to the Board by the second meeting in April, 2016.

This was in response to the recent mandate by the province to allow the Ombudsman’s office to investigate complaints within the school system. This motion will attempt to find a solution whereby the local board would have a role in the process.

This was followed by the board unanimously passing the “Board Recognition Program”. The policy had been posted on the board website for the required 25 days. This program will recognize those individuals within the Halton board that show exemplary contributions. It is open to students, staff and the community.

The board then passed on to the” For Action” portion of the meeting. This usually gives notice of motions that will be acted on in following meetings.

Be it resolved that the Halton District School Board approve the revised Trustee Honoraria to reflect the adjustment to the enrollment amount per Trustee Honoraria Policy.

This motion will be voted on at the next meeting.

The next motion was the recommendations of the striking committee (They recommend which committees trustees will sit on)

Be it resolved that the Halton District School Board approve the trustee committee appointments as outlined in Report 16003.

Although this was to be voted on at the next meeting, the trustees unanimously agreed to wave the rules and voted on the motion which was passed unanimously.
The next item concerned the hiring of additional Educational Assistants for the Halton Board.

Be it resolved the Halton District School Board authorize the Director to allocate 35 additional Educational Assistants to the system to address the special education needs of students, AND THAT the expenditure of approximately $775,000 (February 1-June 30, 2016) be funded through Contingency funds and anticipated 2015/16 Surplus funds
During the budget planning for this year, the decision was made to maintain the same level of staff as the previous year. However, a large amount of unanticipated students with special needs entered the Halton system and this necessitated an increase in EA.

Grebenc - expressive hands

Andrea Grebenc represent Burlington on the public board of education.

During the discussion period, Superintendent Zonneveld said all 35 would not be needed immediately but that 25 would start right away. Chair Amos requested that the rules be waved so that this motion could be voted on today. Trustee Grebenc (Burlington) was cautious in waving the rules as she felt the public might want some input on this motion. However, when the vote to wave the rules was taken, it was unanimous.

The following discussion brought up a number of points;

How can the Educational Assistant funding process be improved
Where will the Educational Assistants come from?
Monies need to be built into the budget for next year
Should additional funds come from the provincial government?
We should analyze the types of needs that are presented

The motion then went to a vote and was passed unanimously.

Director Miller, on behalf of Superintendent Dyson, presented a brief overview of recruitment for French Immersion teachers. The Halton Board will continue to attend Career Fairs in an ongoing effort to hire enough teachers for the growing French Immersion uptake in Halton. With fewer education graduates next year, the future is somewhat grim. Some graduates prefer to stay close to home (most schools are not close to Halton) while other boards hire at the fair while Halton hires later. This, coupled with a high demand from other boards will make the recruitment process difficult.

Hammil + Miller

Director of |Education Stuart Miller, on the right, chats with MM Robinson teacher Dave Hammel

Director Miller then added a few of his own comments. He noted that the board website is in the initial stages of an overhaul. Slight improvements to date have made the site more user friendly and there is a more easy flow in accessing information. Videos of the recent Program Viability presentations are available along with a questionnaire wanting public input on English/French programming in Halton.

Miller pointed out that the board will now be entering the second phase of program viability by getting public input and that they have met with the company that will conduct the focus groups.

One hour and eleven minutes after the start, the meeting concluded.

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Advocacy group maintains the city budget shortchanges transit users - less is being spent on transit this year than last.

burlbudget2016By Staff

January 13th, 2016


City Council will meet next week for two days to thrash out the 2016 budget which, at this point, looks like it will increase 3.85% over what they asked for last year.
The Bank of Canada set inflation at 2% and for the most part the country has been able to keep spending within the inflation range.

For some reason Burlington’s city council feels it has to spend more in 2016 than it did in 2015 (3.85% is the most recent budget increase projection) which has the people at Bfast (Burlington for Accessible, Sustainable Transit) upset because they don’t see any increase in the amount being sent on transit.

“Despite commitments in the City’s Strategic Plan, transit users in Burlington are again being shortchanged by the municipality‘s 2016 budget,” says a spokesperson for Burlington For Accessible, Sustainable Transit (BFAST).

Council is set to approve a budget for the system that provides no funding increase for 2016.

Doug Brown, chair of Bfast, wants to see a bus schedule with routes that work for people and not the current bus route set up in place. It doesn't work claims Brown.

Doug Brown, chair of Bfast says the city is short changing transit users.

“When inflation is considered, the 2016 transit budget is actually less than the budget in 2015,” commented BFAST spokesperson Doug Brown.

“Funding and service cuts, schedule changes and fare increases over the past four years have resulted in a 17% decline in ridership for Burlington’s chronically underfunded transit system. This is despite the requirement of the Ontario Municipal Board that the city increase transit ridership to 11% of all city trips by 2030.

“In contrast,” he ads ” Oakville has seen large increases in transit use as a result of higher funding and better service levels.”

“Burlington’s politicians like to point to the survey by MoneySense magazine that rates our community as the most livable mid-size city in Canada,” Brown said. “But that same magazine notes Burlington is well down the list when it comes to walkability and transit.”

Brown said adequate transit service is an investment, not an expense.

Bus station John Street lined up 1 side

Bus drivers got a pay increase, some new buses arrived – but transit advocates say the city is still not spending enough on transit.

“How much does it end up costing us when people without cars can’t get to their jobs? What’s the real cost of students not being able to take advantage of educational opportunities because Burlington Transit can’t get them to school on time? How much does it cost every taxpayer to own a second or even third car because they can’t rely on the transit system?”

Council is set to vote on the 2016 budget on Jan. 25..

BFAST is a citizen’s group formed in 2012 to advocate for better transit in Burlington.

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CineStarz Showtimes: Week of Friday, January 15, 2016 through Thursday, January 21, 2016

Cinestarz logo

Ciné-Starz Upper Canada Place,
Burlington, ON L7R 4B6


Week of Friday, January 15, 2016 through Thursday, January 21, 2016

Point Break (14A)
Fri – Sun: 11:00 AM, 1:10, 3:00, 7:20, 9:30
Mon – Thu: 1:00, 3:10, 7:35, 9:40

Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Road Chip (G)
Fri – Sun: 11:00 AM, 1:10, 3:10, 5:10, 7:40, 9:50
Mon – Thu: 1:00, 3:30, 5:10, 7:40, 9:40

In the Heart of the Sea (PG)
Fri – Sun: 7:25 PM
Mon – Thu: 2:50, 7:25

Creed (14A)
Fri – Sun: 5:05 PM
Mon – Thu: 5:10 PM

The Good Dinosaur (G)
Fri – Sun: 11:00 AM, 1:00, 3:15, 5:20
Mon – Thu: 1:00, 3:15

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2 (PG)
Fri – Thu: 5:10, 9:30

Spotlight (—)
Fri – Sun: 1:00, 3:00, 5:00, 7:20, 9:40
Mon – Thu: 1:00, 2:45, 5:00, 7:20, 9:40

The Peanuts Movie (G)
Fri – Sun: 11:15 AM, 12:45, 3:15

Spectre ()
Fri – Sun: 12:15, 2:30, 7:00, 9:40
Mon – Thu: 2:30, 7:00, 9:40

The Martian (PG)
Fri – Sun: 5:00, 7:25, 9:35
Mon – Thu: 1:00, 5:00, 7:00, 9:30

Snowtime! (La Guerre des Tuques) (G)
Fri – Sun: 11:20 AM
Mon – Thu: 1:00, 5:15

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City has named Vito Tolone the new director of transportation.


News 100 yellowBy Staff

January 12, 2016


Finally – the city made Vito Tolone the Director of Transportation; he has served as the acting director since May 2015 and is a long-time city employee.

Tolone has been with the city since 1990; has held various positions at the city, including transportation planner, project leader, supervisor of traffic signal systems and senior transportation planner.

Transit - Vito Tolone“After an extensive competition with a strong slate of candidates, I am very pleased that Vito has agreed to lead the city’s transportation group,” said City Manager James Ridge.

“Vito is well regarded in the Ontario municipal sector and brings extensive experience to this role.”

Tolone is a graduate of the Mohawk College Transportation Planning Technology program and a member of the Ontario Association of Certified Engineering Technicians and Technologists.

The transportation department at the City of Burlington oversees the delivery of various road-related services, including the traffic signal system, traffic services, transportation planning, parking, and school crossing guards.

If Burlington is going to function as a city people can move around in – Tolone is going to have to be right on top of how much in the way of financial resources are available to him to do the job.  He knows the transportation field – will his advice and recommendations be heard?

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High school students begin their six week race to build a robot as part of a North American competition.

News 100 redBy Pepper Parr

January 12, 2016


There were hundreds of them. The kept streaming into the room and immediately headed for the table that had hundreds of donuts of every imaginable flavour laid out.

Donut table

Tough to make a donut choice from a table like this.

Later in the day when this small hoard of young people had to be fed the pizza was brought into the rooms on small trolleys.

How did the Board of Education manage to get more than 500 young people out early on a Saturday morning? They were there to get the details on the robotics competition that Burlington students have been part of for 19 years.

It is one of the city’s best kept secrets – the crime is that it is a secret – the event gets next to no media coverage.

Hall full of students

They were an attentive audience – they were there to get the instructions they needed for the competition they were going to engage in. This was serious stuff.

The daylong event took place at the Gary Allan High school and had participants from throughout the Region.

The starting point was the broadcast of a video that was shown across North America to students in auditoriums who wanted to get the fundamentals of the robotics challenge.

Hammil + Miller

Dave Hammel from MM Robinson and Director of Education Stewart Miller exchange a laugh during the first phase of the North American robotics competition.

Under strict rules, limited resources, and the guidance of volunteer mentors including engineers, teachers, business professionals, parents, alumni and more, teams of 25+ students have just six weeks to build and program robots to perform challenging tasks against a field of competitors. They must also raise funds, design a team “brand,” hone teamwork skills, and perform community outreach. In addition to learning valuable STEM and life skills, participants are eligible to apply for $25+ million in college scholarships.


The challenge in the 2016 First robotics competition was to breach the castle stronghold of the other team – using robots to do the breaching.

FIRST Robotics Competition Kickoff. The new game and playing field are unveiled and teams receive a Kickoff Kit made up of donated items and components worth tens of thousands of dollars – and only limited instructions. Working with adult Mentors, students have six weeks to design, build, program, and test their robots to meet the season’s engineering challenge. Once these young inventors build a robot, their teams will participate in one or more of the Regional and District events that measure the effectiveness of each robot, the power of collaboration, and the determination of students.

The Gazette intends to follow the robotics team from Burlington Central High school and M M Robinson high school. Our first look at these two groups was an amazing time – we saw some of the brightest young people we have come across in this city.

Stay tuned.

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Burlington Green comments on Strategic Plan - will they be listened to? The comments are very valid.

opinionandcommentBy Staff

January 12, 2016


BurlingtonGreen put its two cents on the table and gave city council and senior staff its views on the Strategic Plan that is currently out for public review.

They made several significant points:  One being that there wasn’t enough focus climate change and they wondered why there was a long term vision but not much in the way of a four year, single term of office document.  Burlington Green isn’t the only group asking that question.

Burlington Green’s Executive Director Amy Schnurr points to “the extensive community feedback” they received through their Greenprint for the Future outreach program where they learned what the citizens of Burlington had to say about a variety of local environmental issues.

Iceberg melting

Ice birgs are melting.

“Both globally and locally, the health of the environment and need for effective, results-oriented action to ensure a sustainable future has never been more important. Municipalities have an essential role to play in combating climate change and must prioritize and integrate associated action strategies into short and long-term planning. Additionally, with Burlington currently facing the conflicting challenges of build-out and population growth, the associated issues of intensification, infill practices, habitat destruction, local food security, waste management and effective transportation, combine to make sustainable planning a top priority.”

BurlingtonGreen strongly believes that climate change and the environment must be central to Burlington’s vision and planning going forward and respectfully offers the following input to aid the City in improving the draft Strategic Plan for 2015 to 2040.

Issue:  Strategic Plan versus Long Term Vision: we feel the current document represents a strategic vision, rather than a plan which requires specific, measurable time-bound strategies.

Recommendation:  Re position the document as “Burlington’s Vision for 2015 to 2040”and develop a five year Strategic Plan in consultation with the community, to implement the short and long term elements of the vision.

Issue:  The Vision Statement “Where people, nature, and business thrive” is missing the element of community context.

Recommendation: Include the word “community”, so that the vision statement reads: “Where people, nature, business, and community thrive”.

Smokestacks Hamilton

Smoke stacks are killing us.

Issue: Climate Change: the document makes no reference to this, the most important environmental and social issue of our times, and though some elements, such as the City’s carbon-neutral proposal, address it in part, there is no cohesive or strongly-stated strategy articulated. Cities must be on the front line of action in dealing with climate change, and Burlington needs to demonstrate clear leadership here.

Recommendation: Add a fifth section to the plan dedicated to climate change because strategies dealing with climate change must include or involve all sections of the plan: not just health and environment, but also transportation and economic development and the type of growth we want to have and can sustain in the next twenty five years.

If it is deemed that an additional section cannot be added then all document sections should be strengthened significantly to integrate climate change mitigation and adaptation planning strategies.

Issue: A City that Grows: we support the thrust towards intensification and smart growth; however, there is insufficient recognition of the need to develop and preserve a livable and environmentally sustainable community, while promoting economic growth.

Smart growth must advance strategic plans that respect nature’s biodiversity and our irreplaceable green spaces that Burlington is fortunate to have. This additional point is not only important for Burlington citizens, but is fundamental to promoting economic growth in a postmodern information economy.

Reccomendation: Strengthen this section to clearly indicate that the vision is to absorb growth in the currently defined urban areas to support an economically strong, livable and environmentally sustainable community.

Issue: A City that Moves: we strongly believe that a much greater focus on public transit and active transportation is required in the draft plan.

Bus station 1

Do we have enough buses and are they the right size to meet the changing demand?

Recommendation: Make Public Transit and Active Transportation priorities by creating a dedicated section specifically dealing with “public transit” and “active transportation options”, in coordination with the Region of Halton’s recently published Active Transportation Master Plan, and where necessary, work proactively with the Region to suggest any improvements to the Plan that are needed to meet Burlington’s specific requirements.

Issue: A Healthy and Greener City: we find this section represents a fairly traditional approach to environment and more innovative and integrative thinking and strategies, with a strong focus on Climate Change are required.

Belvenia trees-1024x768

Tree canopies like this take decades to mature – is there a plan in place to replace these trees when they begin to fail? It is streets like this that give Burlington much of its character and value.

Recommendation: Review this section approaching urban and growth issues from an environmental point of view, and ensure the inclusion of important issues such as:
• Green Space: include strategies for green space growth and preservation for its carbon sink capacity and quality of life and health benefits.
A comprehensive (city and privately owned) green space inventory and acquisition plan is required to support this;
• Tree Canopy: include strategies to protect and strengthen our tree canopy to meet Environment Canada’s community sustainability standards.
One example includes the establishment of a practical, effective private property tree bylaw given that the majority of our tree canopy is located on privately owned lands.
• Habitat & Biodiversity Protection: A balanced approach to development planning is essential to ensure the city’s natural areas are preserved and habitat restoration work is advanced to ensure local biodiversity is protected and enhanced.
• Waste Reduction: include municipal and community strategies to support the Region and Province to meet waste reduction goals. Advancement of the city’s green procurement strategies and establishing local targets, incentives and requirements for all events and festivals conducted on city property are a few examples.
• Energy: consider whether energy, being at the fulcrum of climate change, should be a distinct initiative in this section and perhaps whether the section might be renamed Environment and Energy. Include forward looking strategies such as developing community energy systems(s) by engaging industry experts and committing to community energy infrastructure development.
The test for feasibility should not be limited to existing business and geopolitical measures but should include forward looking plans that anticipate changes in support of combatting climate change.
• Farmland/Source Water Protection: include strategies that will strengthen the protection of our vital agricultural sector and water resources such as adopting a Food & Water First policy.

Issue: A Healthy and Greener City: we find this section represents a fairly traditional approach to environment and more innovative and integrative thinking and strategies, with a strong focus on Climate Change are required.

Halton escarpment - long view up slope

Do we have a rural farmland policy?

Recommendation: Review this section approaching urban and growth issues from an environmental point of view, and ensure the inclusion of important issues such as:
• Green Space: include strategies for green space growth and preservation for its carbon sink capacity and quality of life and health benefits.
A comprehensive (city and privately owned) green space inventory and acquisition plan is required to support this;
• Tree Canopy: include strategies to protect and strengthen our tree canopy to meet Environment Canada’s community sustainability standards.
One example includes the establishment of a practical, effective private property tree bylaw given that the majority of our tree canopy is located on privately owned lands.
• Habitat & Biodiversity Protection: A balanced approach to development planning is essential to ensure the city’s natural areas are preserved and habitat restoration work is advanced to ensure local biodiversity is protected and enhanced.
• Waste Reduction: include municipal and community strategies to support the Region and Province to meet waste reduction goals. Advancement of the city’s green procurement strategies and establishing local targets, incentives and requirements for all events and festivals conducted on city property are a few examples.
• Energy: consider whether energy, being at the fulcrum of climate change, should be a distinct initiative in this section and perhaps whether the section might be renamed Environment and Energy. Include forward looking strategies such as developing community energy systems(s) by engaging industry experts and committing to community energy infrastructure development.
The test for feasibility should not be limited to existing business and geopolitical measures but should include forward looking plans that anticipate changes in support of combatting climate change.
• Farmland/Source Water Protection: include strategies that will strengthen the protection of our vital agricultural sector and water resources such as adopting a Food & Water First policy.

A rapt audience listened to an overview of the 2014 budget. What they have yet to have explained to them is the desperate situation the city will be in ten years from now if something isn't done in the next few years to figure out how we are going to pay for the maintenance of the roads we have.

A rapt audience listens to an overview of a budget – did they have any real input ?

An Engaging City: we generally support what is here, however as a Blue Dot community, Burlington needs to step up to the commitment and advance a plan to stimulate citizen engagement specifically in regards to growth and environmental issues.

Recommendation: Advance plans to stimulate meaningful citizen engagement with respect to growth and environmental issues.

Burlington Green has been consistent with its plea that the public be listened to and heard. They argue that the City’s Strategic Plan for 2015-2040 “must reflect this commitment; they hope the constructive input and recommendations provided make it into the final document.




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Strategic plan that is now out for [public consultation has four strategic directions. Pure pablum says on resident - another adds that no one does strategic plans anymore.

element_strategic_planBy Pepper Parr

January 8th 2016


Strategic plans are by seldom an easy read. They are however important – they set out where the politicians you elected want to see growth take place.

There was a time when Burlington had acres of farm land that was developed over time – the two malls we have were once very productive farmland at a time when Burlington was known around the word for the quality of its produce.

Ghdent Gillies Garden of Canada

The city – then a town – was once a produce garden known around the world. We grew and we now need a strategy to guide the growth,

We shipped so much fresh fruit and vegetables that the railway had two tracks coming into what was then a town.

That was then – developers bought that farmland and put up a parking lot and added some stores along the edges. The old Burlington began to change and the downtown core that once was a place where people did gather began to wither.

The four pillars for 2015 strat plan

Strategic Plan is based on four strategic directions.

The city believes it needs a Strategic Plan and spends a considerable amount of time and significant financial resources putting a document together and looking for public comment.
The draft version of the Strategic Plan that is now ready for public comment has four Strategic Directions: a city that moves; a city that grows; a healthy and greener city; and an engaging city.

This report takes material from the draft report and adds comments to put what the draft Strategic Plan is saying in context. See the draft plan as a piece of sales literature with one side of the story. The Gazette has added comment based on its five years of covering this council and attendance at all the meetings for the 2011 Strategic Plan and most of the meetings for the plan that is ready for public comment. The commentary is set out in bold italic.

Everything your city council wants to have happen in Burlington as it grows – and the city has to grow because the province says we must – is pinned to the four strategic directions. There was no public input on the choice of those four strategic directions. They came out of discussion and debate and wordsmithed by the consultants.
First strategic direction is related to growth. That growth is identified as coming about as the result of – economic development, intensification and smart population growth.

Each of these has a list of strategic initiatives the city will undertake and then a list of progress indicators telling us what real progress has been made.

Council wants to promote economic growth. Local incomes have risen and Burlington continues to be a prosperous city due to the co-ordinated action of the city, region, province, educational institutions and industry. The very significant increases in the selling prices of housing has made a difference as well; a recent report had the increase at the 9.2% year over year level.

More people who live in Burlington, work in Burlington and targets for employment lands have been met (15,000 new knowledge-based jobs by 2025) through the creation of an employment lands vision to unite the community, developers and industry.


An empty lot on the North Service Road at Walkers Line was to be the home of a new IKEA – that didn’t work out but a six storey office building got built a couple of hundred yards away.

The development community has been banging away at council to let quite a bit of the land set aside for employment be converted and used instead for housing – which is a lot more profitable.

The draft report claims that employment lands are connected to the community and region and include transportation links and options that are easy to access and contribute to a sustainable and walk able community. That statement is more than a bit of a stretch. A report earlier this week in the Spectator said that those who attended the Pan Am games didn’t make much use of public transit – and there is nothing wrong with the GO service.

Burlington hasn’t taken to the idea of public transit yet. When a significant number of seniors find that they can’t drive or find the traffic too congested to drive – they will make their concerns known to council and then watch how quickly city council comes onside and starts spending the gas tax rebates on transit – which is what they were intended for.

Small businesses contributes to  the creation of complete neighbourhoods. Commerce aligns with land-use planning goals so that residents are close to goods and services.

Innovative, entrepreneurial businesses have settled or developed in Burlington. The city has helped create the technological support, business supports, infrastructure and educational environment to attract start-ups and growing businesses.

The people who write these reports keep saying things that are just not true – they seem to feel that if they say something often enough it will become true.

Elizabeth Interiors from Brant

This just isn’t a vibrant downtown – the site has been sold with yet another condominium being planned for the site – right opposite city hall.

Two statements that need to be dealt with honestly – Burlington’s downtown is vibrant and thriving with greater intensification. The downtown isn’t vibrant – hasn’t been vibrant for a long, long time. Better minds than mine may know how to make it vibrant – but we aren’t there yet.

Much of the rural property is in the hands of speculators who limit what can be done with the land. There are farmers north of Dundas that would like to grow different crops but the owners of the property limit what they can grow. The City of Burlington’s rural areas will be economically and socially vibrant, producing commodities and providing unique recreational activities for the city.

How will Burlington make the growth wanted actually happen?

These are some examples of actions and measures of success:

Create an employment lands vision that drives investment and growth in the Prosperity Corridors.

Masony Road ADI rendering TH + Pahse 2Getting the people who own the land to work with the city and develop with long term viability is the first step – some of the plans on the table for the land around the Aldershot GO station leave a lot to be desired.

Develop and put in place a redevelopment and intensification strategy for the Prosperity Corridors

Build one economic development brand for the City of Burlington that reflects the city’s economic development vision

Develop a holistic strategy for Burlington’s rural area. This strategy will consider economic, social and environmental factors in support of the rural community, agricultural industry, natural heritage and water resources

Develop a post-secondary attraction strategy.

Something along these lines was planned for Burlington's downtown core - but McMaster stifed the city when a nicer deal came along.

Something along these lines was planned for Burlington’s downtown core – but McMaster stifed the city when a nicer deal came along.

There was a time when the DeGroote campus now on the South Service Road was going to be downtown on land that is currently the Elizabeth Street parking lot. That on got away on us. There has been some rumbling about perhaps getting some of the Mohawk College courses delivered in Burlington. Mohawk president Ron McKerlie  says that isn’t going to happen. The one post-secondary institution we did have pulled up their stakes and moved on.

Molinaro paradigm projectDevelop a business-friendly environment that attracts investment. The real issues is to find investors who look for long term returns and not the getting in and getting out to turn the fast buck.  There is a project in the west end that the developer wants to get approved that doesn’t include very much, if anything in the way of amenities.  There are developers building forms of housing that are not built that often.  And at the same time there are developers prepared to work with city hall and the ward Councillors and not grab every last square foot of density available.  There is a developer currently building what will amount to a new community that will house more than 2000 people.

Create and invest in a system that supports the start-up and growth of businesses and entrepreneurship.   There are a lo of people who would love to know what such a system would look like.  The role of government is to create the conditions needed for economic growth and then stay out of the way and let business people do what they do best.  Keep the taxes low – provide services that people need fix the pot holes and keep the snow off the roads and sidewalks.

Progress indicators:
How will we know we are getting to where we want to get to?

• Median household income will rise
• Labour force by industry will tell us ho we are doing
• Industry location targets will be clearly identified
• Income distribution will be known to track inequity
• Percentage of families with low income will be lower
• Rural economic health indicator will exist
• Number of hectares of farmland under active cultivation
• Year-over-year employment land absorption
• Jobs per hectare in the urban boundary
• Percentage of the community that does not work in Burlington
• City’s gross domestic product
• Employment and unemployment rates.

There is a bit of a problem with this list of data – the city does not have a demographer on staff and without one it will be very difficult to report on any of the above.  There was no mention made of hiring a demographer during the strategic plan discussions.


Growth is being achieved in mixed-use nodes and corridors, including mobility hubs and urban centres.

Mobility hubs

The city defined four possible “mobility hubs” They appear to have settled on the Aldershot location.

Mobility hubs are developed near each GO Station and in the downtown.

Aging plazas are being redeveloped and transformed into mixed-use neighbourhood hubs.

New/transitioning neighbourhoods are being designed to promote easy access to amenities, services and employment areas with more opportunities for walking, cycling and using public transit.

Older neighbourhoods are important to the character of Burlington and intensification will be carefully managed to respect this character.

Energy-efficient buildings and other onsite sustainable features are the norm, thereby improving Burlington’s environmental footprint. Existing buildings are being renovated to improve efficiency.

Intensification is planned so that growth is financially sustainable and supported by appropriate funding and service delivery.

Burlington has an urban core that has higher densities, green space and amenities, is culturally active and is home to a mix of residents and businesses.

Architecture, sustainable buildings and urban design excellence are being achieved through a commitment to creating public spaces where people can live, work or gather.

The city will create and implement an awards program to recognize and celebrate excellence in architecture, urban design and sustainability in all developments.

Aldershot 2

Waterdown Road was recently widened from Hwy 403 to Plains Road. As part of an intensification exercise the planners prepared visualizations of what that Road could look like if there were some commercial development. This is what they thought possible.

Aldershot 1

This is what Waterdown Road north of Plains Road looks like today.

How will Burlington make this happen?
These are some examples of actions and measures of success:

Strategic Initiatives:
The city will focus intensification to mixed-use nodes and employment corridors by updating intensification targets and co-ordinating infrastructure to achieve growth objectives. The city will incorporate revised intensification targets into its Official Plan. The city will demonstrate its commitment to growth management by preparing an intensification plan to manage projected growth and its related impacts. This will be complete in two years but will not limit prioritizing/directing intensification in the shorter term.

Through policy, the city will influence the redevelopment of aging plazas and transform them into mixed-use neighbourhood hubs.

The city will work with Halton Region and other partners to develop a servicing plan for intensification areas.

The city will conduct and implement an intensification plan that will include a specific focus on the Urban Growth Centre, and will develop a strategy for the downtown core that will promote residential and appropriate niche/boutique office development

The city will develop energy and sustainable site feature guidelines to require new/ renewed buildings to promote energy-efficient technologies.

The city will complete a city-wide fiscal impact analysis of all forms of development

The city will put in place the recommendations of Core Commitment in the downtown and extend, where possible, recommendations to other urban centres.

The city will create an independent capacity study to understand and comment on real estate economics and trends.

The city will create a design review panel and put in place an awards program to achieve excellence in architecture, urban design and sustainability.

Progress Indicators:

Percentage of aging commercial plazas that have redeveloped

Percentage of mobility hubs that are developed

Intensification (Jobs/people per hectare) for mobility hubs, urban centres, urban corridors, commercial plazas and urban employment areas.

Smart Population Growth:
Burlington is an inclusive city that has a higher proportion of youth, newcomers and young families and offers a price range and mix of housing choices.
Seniors are supported by a strategy that promotes health, recreation, transportation and aging in place.

How will Burlington make this happen?
These are some examples of actions and measures of success:

Strategic Initiatives:

urban corridor scenario 1

Fairview was seen as a street with people walking and lanes for cyclists. That’s not what it is today.

Future development will be higher density, walkable, accessible and transit- oriented. The city will become a leader in walkability scores in the province, and will be fully aligned with provincial strategy and goals.

The city will prioritize one mobility hub, and will work with partners to ensure resources are available to allow the development to proceed in a timely way. The prioritized hub will be included in the Official Plan and Transportation Master Plan. Stakeholders will be consulted to help gain consensus.

Within two years, the city will develop a strategy in co-operation with other levels of government to support young families:

Housing supply will allow young families and newcomers to locate in Burlington
Infrastructure will support the economic, social and community goals of youth, young families and newcomers.

Within four years, the city will develop an economic migrant outreach and liaison office to attract investor/entrepreneur class immigrants, while remaining a destination of choice for all immigrants, including refugees.

An Age Friendly strategy for seniors will be developed within three years to ensure sufficient seniors’ programming space is provided throughout the city.

The city will improve its ability to monitor, track and understand Burlington’s demographic growth trends and profile.

If you give them enough rope – they eventually hang themselves – what’s with all the “within” dates?  Do your best and try not to set yourselves up for failure by attaching a specific date to something you may have little control over.

Progress Indicators:
Walkability score applied to intensification and population growth
Population by demographics
Median age
Immigration numbers and percentages
Household size
Median housing price
Mix of available housing types.

More data is always nice – the capacity to make decisions is what taxpayers both  look for and expect.

The remaining three Strategic Directions will be detailed in a follow up article.

There are three more public information sessions on the draft Strategic Plan; January 13 and January 18th.

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Burlington resident arrested for trafficking a person under the age of 18 years.

Crime 100By Staff

January 11th, 2016


The Halton Regional Police Service Human Trafficking and Vice Unit (HTVU) have arrested a Burlington male for trafficking a person under 18 years of age.

On January 8th 2016, the HTVU arrested Troy Terrance TAYLOR (21 years of age) for several human trafficking offences. The investigation revealed that TAYLOR had been trafficking a female minor for the purposes of sexual exploitation for a prolonged period of time.

Troy Terrance TAYLOR was charged with the following offences:

• Forcible Confinement – Section 279(2)
• Utter death threats – Section 264(1)(a)
• Assault with a Weapon – Section 267
• Trafficking in persons under 18 Section 279.011(1)
• Living on the avails of prostitution under eighteen – Section 212(2)
• Receiving material benefits – Section 279.02
• Receiving financial material benefits (child victim) – Section 286.2(2)
• Exercise control – Section 212(1) (h)
• Knowingly advertise – Section 286.4
• Make child pornography – Section 163.1(2)
• Sexual exploitation of a young person – Section 153 (1) (b)

TAYLOR will appear in Milton Court on January 11th 2016.

Investigators believe that TAYLOR is not involved with trafficking any unknown victims at this time.

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Canada Summer Jobs 2016 now accepting applications from employers.

News 100 blueBy Staff

January 12, 2016


An information release from the office of MP Karina Gould announces that Not-for-profit organizations, public-sector employers and small businesses with 50 or fewer employees looking to hire full-time workers for summer 2016 can now apply for funding under the Canada Summer Jobs (CSJ) program.

Learn - earn - student employment

Summer employment has been the beginning of a lot of careers.

CSJ creates summer job opportunities and valuable work experience specifically for youth aged 15 to 30 intending to return to their studies in the next school year. The program’s aim is also to help employers create summer job opportunities that focus on priorities important to their local communities, which could include special events such as sporting or cultural occasions.

In Burlington, the priorities focus on local special events and festivals, advanced manufacturing, tourism, and organizations that provide programs and services for seniors or disadvantaged community groups, but all eligible applicants are encouraged to apply. It is hoped that a number of employers will come forward with applications which will also complement a number of national priorities, including support for:

• employers who help welcome and settle Syrian refugees to Canada, as well as Syrian students;
• Indigenous people, who are among the fastest-growing segments of the Canadian population;
• small businesses working to become more innovative, competitive and successful, in recognition of their key contribution to the creation of new jobs; and
• cultural and creative industries looking to create jobs and to strengthen our rich Canadian identity. This latter priority will support the planning of Canada’s 150th anniversary of Confederation in 2017.

The application period runs from January 4, 2016, to February 26, 2016. Applicants approved for funding will be able to hire students as early as May 2016.


An education is part of getting a job – some experience helps.

For further information and to apply, please visit or visit a Service Canada Centre.

Canada Summer Jobs is part of the Government of Canada’s Youth Employment Strategy, which is its commitment to help young people, particularly those facing barriers to employment, get the information and gain the skills, work experience and abilities they need to make a successful transition into the labour market.

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