Planner who seemed to support the sentiment of most of the Council members gives them a way to get the Meed Ward motions off the table.

News 100 redBy Pepper Parr

January 23rd, 2018

BURLINGTON, ON

 

Why is it that a person supporting the view that council has usually get to speak last?

News anal BLUEGlen Wellings, a planner in private practice, told council that the public comments about the planners was “reprehensible”. He added that he thought the expected Meed Ward motions should be sent to the planners for consideration.

Wellings objected to the “special interests” trying to control the agenda yet when he spoke in Georgetown in 2016, encouraging spectators to voice their opinions in front of Halton Hills council during the public meeting on March 1.

“Go to the meeting on March 1 and let [council] know how you feel,” he said.

Glenn Wellings

Glenn Wellings – planner.

He assured council that the sky was not going to fall and that they should get on with the job they were elected to do.

The objective is to get the damn things off the table so that they don’t have to be voted on.

Council appears determined to rush the draft Official Plan through – to what end is not at all clear. Perhaps because they can.

The citizens have done their best – and there were some exceptionally good delegations. Debby Morrison and Gary Scobie plus Catherine Crozier deserve to be nominated as Burlington’s Best. If you’re reading Catherine – please send us that delegation – it deserves a wider audience.

A rough calculation would be that 250 people attended the public meeting.

The prospect of the Meed Ward motions making it are dim but there was a point when keep Central high school open looked dim – remember how that worked out.

 

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12 comments to Planner who seemed to support the sentiment of most of the Council members gives them a way to get the Meed Ward motions off the table.

  • Perry Bowker

    “Who drew up the order of delegates..?”

    I was one of the delegators, and made a request of the organiser to appear on Tuesday afternoon due to another important meeting I had in the evening. My request was granted without any fuss, and early in the schedule. (I won’t speak of the hour wasted at first listening to the planning staff presentations, as if nobody had seen them before). As to the rest of the delegations, it seemed to me that there was no hanky-panky – possibly because almost all the delegators were opposed to passing the OP in its current state.

  • Jeremy Skinner

    Did anyone who was present during or who watched Glenn Welling’s delegation take notice that he indicated that all is not well in what was Oakville’s downtown core?
    Perhaps a trip to visit what was Oakville’s downtown is in order. While in Oakville, why not drive through Oakville’s Mobility Hub which surrounds the Oakville GO Station. This was to be the relocated Oakville urban growth centre.
    Metrolinx Profile for Oakville Ref: http://www.metrolinx.com/en/regionalplanning/mobilityhubs/mobility_hubs_Midtown_Oakville.aspx
    Oakville’s 2017 OP Amendment Schedule L1 & L2 provide more detail Ref:
    https://www.oakville.ca/assets/2011%20planning/Draft%20OPA%2006-08-2017.pdf
    Glenn Welling declared his work relationship and interests to the Planning & Development Committee at the start of his delegation.

    • Don

      Downtown Oakville looks perfectly fine to me, and we would be fortunate to have it in combination with our waterfront. The issue downtown Oakville is that the landlords are getting greedy, and the independent retailers are getting gradually squeezed out in favour of national/ regional chain stores.

  • Nancy Steadman

    Why have an OP and zoning at all if developers or residents can routinely ask for and get huge variances, for example, in building heights ranging from one storey to X number more? If Council takes time and gets the OP right, then have zoning rules reflect that, and actually stick to the rules, a lot of problems would disappear. Minor variances would still be needed….but please, get a better definition of “minor” – two stories ….or twelve …..is NOT minor.

    Mr. Wellings, said we can’t make it personal. (I will refrain from asking out loud how a man whose business deals with many city developers can say HE doesn’t have a personal stake in the issue….). What can be more personal than where you live and breathe? As a resident, I want a Burlington with measured growth, so that citizens a hundred years down the road can still find the downtown a people-oriented place with open space, diversity, visible sky and a real waterfront. They can still find residential neighbourhoods anywhere in the city with character and space and greenery around each house, without being shaded by monster homes or tall buildings designed to meet imposed intensification guidelines. When anyone buys a home, a business, a parcel of land, they should know that existing zoning protects their investment and can’t be routinely changed by appeals. Wise city planning IS personal, Mr. Wellings!

    I would also be most interested to know who drew up the order of delegates…..

  • Jim Young

    Mr. Wellings should be aware that the sky falling is not the yardstick by which good policy is measured.
    Obviously life will go on of council make bad decisions without thought or care for Burlington citizens.
    But that life will be less rewarding and less pleasurable for the people who have to live with those decisions.
    City Council, Staff and Planners like Mr. Wellings should be consulting with citizens to ensure that plans for the city enhance the citizens lives.
    Together we can do better than holding up the sky, we can reach for it.

  • Don Fletcher

    Thanks Glenn.
    So we just need to trust the process & the planners & councillors and everything will be okay!
    Unfortunately, we have a recent example (23-storey Carriage Gate development at James & Brant) of an approval that made most of the residents feel betrayed. You don’t have to be Ken Greenberg to know that this is bad planning.

    If we are to clear the toxic atmosphere engulfing the OP development process, this appoval must be rescinded (starting with a motion from one of the five who originally approved it (John Taylor? Jack Dennison?) to renegotiate it to fit with current OP permissions.

    Then and only then can we begin to move on planning our future, with some semblance of good faith.

  • Jim Young

    I am informed by a contact that Mr. Wellings’ wife works at City Hall. Can anyone confirm or refute this?

  • Allan

    I was there all evening and to my knowledge there were no “special interest” groups except for Glen Wellings! He accused all delegates of being self serving when as the owner of a local planning consultancy he stands to benefit the most by supporting the Official Plan.

  • Gary Scobie really put into perfect focus (I’ll paraphrase):

    Gary: “You just told us the heights in the New Official Plan are going to be enforced. Why are the heights in the old plan not being enforced?”

    Response: “That old plan is unenforceable, just look at all the exceptions.”

    Gary: “Council grants all the exceptions – just say no.”

    Response: “I’ll have to ask staff about that.”

  • Penny

    It is interesting that Glenn Wellings showed up at 9:45pm to delegate. Mr. Wellings gave an impassioned speech about NIMBY’s and managed to put down the politicians while at the same time exalting the merits of the planning department.
    Mr. Wellings is a planner who lives and works in Burlington who works for developers and municipalities. His business depends on over-intensification. A conflict of interest perhaps!!!!
    I was impressed that the only negative thing he could say about ECoB was that he got a flyer in his mailbox at home but not at his business.
    Mr. Wellings also encouraged Council not to listen to residents. In an election year this might not be good advice to follow.

  • JUDITH CHRISTIE

    After listening to the “last” speaker, Mr. Wellings (planner) at tonight’s meeting I was happy to note that there were no “Chicken Littles” in the audience! I hope Mr. Wellings and council also noted the same.

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