Monday, September 8, 2014

SAM SMITH PARK BEING STUDIED BY CITY FOR DESIGNATION AS AN "ENVIRONMENTALLY SIGNIFICANT AREA"

City staff have prepared a report for the Planning and Growth Management Committee proposing action on an Official Plan Amendment to add additional Environmentally Significant Areas to the City's natural heritage system. Sam Smith Park is one of them.

The report identifies ESA's as ......


" ... critical areas within the City's natural heritage system. They contain habitats of large size or unusually high diversity, provide habitats for rare species; contain rare landforms, and serve as stop over locations or concentration points for migratory wildlife. These natural treasures are particularly significant and sensitive and are given the highest level of protection in the Official Plan. Development is not permitted in ESAs and activities are limited to those that are compatible with the preservation of their natural features and ecological functions."

Sam Smith Park certainly fits that description and increased protection of the natural areas of the park is part of Friends of Sam Smith Park's mission statement.

This is what happens next ......

"It is recommended that four (4) combined open house/community meetings be held during November 2014 to review the proposed amendment. A report on the outcome of the consultation and a final proposed amendment will be submitted to Planning and Growth Management Committee in the first half of 2015." 


The writer of the report (on behalf of Jennifer Keesmaat, City Chief Planner) is Joe D'Abramo who is about to retire.  His duties have been taken over by Klaus Lehmann who can be contacted at (416) 392 0175 or by email.  It might be a good idea to contact him and ask to be notified of any developments on this file and for a heads-up on the community meetings.  FOSS will also monitor this and pass on information to our contact list.

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