What is a Brownfield?
The Provincial Policy Statement (2005) defines Brownfield sites as:
“…undeveloped or previously developed properties that may be contaminated. They are usually, but not exclusively, former industrial or commercial properties that may be underutilized, derelict or vacant.”
Why should we encourage the redevelopment of Brownfields?
- To protect the general health of the community
- To mitigate potential impacts of Brownfields on environmental features
- To promote intensification and infill in areas that have access to existing municipal infrastructure, social and recreational activities
- To revitalize properties to create pride and enjoyment in core neighbourhoods
Brownfield sites are often strategically located in the core areas of cities, with access to existing infrastructure and services, and in close proximity to water and other transportation networks. Left abandoned or vacant, Brownfield sites can represent lost property tax revenue, residential intensification and employment opportunities. Unfortunately the redevelopment of a Brownfield can be a challenge to the developer due to the legal, financial and environmental obstacles involved.
Through the implementation of Official Plan policy, the goal of Planning staff is to develop and promote the coordination of departments through Brownfield policy and a new proactive development process for Brownfield redevelopment. As key properties are developed, it is anticipated that the influence of this development will affect the surrounding properties and community as whole, therefore promoting intensification and desirable living and employment opportunities.
Brownfields Update: March 2016
A New Community Improvement Plan covering the Built Boundary has been drafted to include financial incentives to encourage Brownfield redevelopment amongst other programs to support strategic planning and growth management objectives within the Built up area of the City of Barrie. More information.
Additional resource: Brownfields Ontario (Ontario Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing)
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