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Saw-whet Golf Course under threat of development: Voice Your Opinion

Public Meeting - Monday, April 14, 7 pm, Oakville Town Hall

Saw-whet Golf Course under threat of development: Voice Your Opinion
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About the Author

Allan Elgar

Allan Elgar

Allan Elgar is the councillor for Ward 4. Previously he was a founding president of Oakvillegreen, and held various management positions at Bell Canada. He was first elected to Oakville Town Council in 2000.

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This is the public’s opportunity to “officially” speak up about the proposed development in the Merton Lands. The developer’s current proposal would develop 85% of Saw-whet Golf Course and result in 875 residential units plus some commercial development.

I encourage you to attend the meeting even if you do not wish to speak. A crowd sends a message to council that this issue is one the public cares deeply about, so spread the word and encourage friends, neighbours etc. to also attend. Development of Saw-whet is not a “done deal”. It will be up to council to determine its fate. (Presentations are limited to 10 minutes.)

I have received close to 600 emails strongly against this development proposal. Thank you again for choosing to become involved in this important issue. If you have not expressed your thoughts in writing please do so – send comments to:

membersofcouncil@oakville.ca

mertonstudy@oakville.ca

Saw-whet need not suffer the same fate as Richview: Here’s why:

  • Stronger Official Plan – The Town revises its Official Plan every 5 years. I feel the previous Official Plan (when the Richview development was being decided) was much weaker than our current official plan, Livable Oakville. We have closed loop-holes and now have more tools available to prevent unwanted development. (details below)
  • Approval of development of Saw-whet Golf Course could set a dangerous precedent – if council says yes to this development it would (in my opinion) be an “arbitrary decision” to give this particular developer a pass on the safeguards we have built into our Official Plan. Going forward, this could weaken our ability to say no if someone wants to develop, say Deerfield, Glen Abbey, or any other land zoned “private open space”. I feel this is the first real test of the strength of our current Official Plan related to Open Space.
  • The public is making a strong statement that it does not want development on the Merton Lands for many reasons, and I feel council is listening.
  • The technical studies were financed and managed by the developer and some serious concerns about their quality have been raised. If science is to play a part in this decision, shouldn’t the science be as correct and complete as possible? (more on this follows)
  • Oakville has already met Provincially-mandated growth targets in its Livable Oakville Official Plan to 2031.
  • We have not budgeted for any additional growth in this area in our 10 year long term capital budget.

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