Indian Point neighbourhood gets first of several close looks by planning department as city creeps toward a new Official Plan.

By Pepper Parr

BURLINGTON, ON.  April 3, 2013  –  The first hint that there were going to be neighbourhood character studies was when the Planning department held a very small workshop at the Performing Arts Centre where they gave three groups of people the same very large map and asked them to define the neighbourhoods on the map.

Each of the groups came up with vaguely similar boundaries but there really wasn’t much in the way of a clear expression of just what a neighbourhood was.  Little wonder: according to Alan Gummo, formerly with the planning department and now retired, the word neighbourhood doesn’t appear in the Official Plan, a document the city was setting out to review as required by provincial legislation.

The city’s Planner had decided the 2013 review would be much deeper than past reviews, doing so for a number of reasons.  Bruce Krushelnicki now had Provincial guidelines he had to adhere to and he had a much more robust Strategic Plan to adhere to as well.  That document was crystal clear in its viewpoint – there were to be “vibrant neighbourhoods” and while that concept has been used to slip through some pretty dodgy spending, there was no getting away from the fact that it was something that had to be dealt with.

If there are to be vibrant neighbourhoods the planners needed to know just where those neighbourhoods were located.

Fifteen acres, 30 homes, three streets are all part of the Indian Point enclave felt to be the oldest neighbourhood outside the Burlington core.

Krushelnicki explained to the residents from Indian Point Tuesday evening,  that Burlington was a core city that just added neighbourhoods as it evolved.  Indian Point was probably the very first neighbourhood that got described as an “enclave” with 30 properties that were made distinct by large lots bounded by a creek on the north and Lake Ontario on the south.

Aldershot evolved. Roseland came into being, Millcroft, the Orchard are a few of the others that followed.  The most recent is Alton Village that came about when the 407 was built which created a piece of land that was no longer north of the rural boundary.   Other than some housing to be included in the Tremaine Road/Dundas development in the eastern part of the city and the Eagle Heights development in the west, the city is pretty well-built out and  as Krushelnicki put it “we now have to better manage what we have.”

Anne McIlroy, standing, talks to Indian Point residents about their views and vision for the community that is part of an Official Plan review character study.

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