Growing the Greenbelt

When the Greenbelt was created in 2005, many observers warned that it should be bigger to contain poorly-planned, low density, urban sprawl. Over the past 10 years we’ve seen that the Greenbelt is effective at limiting sprawl but leapfrog development and infrastructure threatens to undermine the Greenbelt Plan.

In 2015, during the provincial review of the Greenbelt Plan 120 community groups across the region rallied to support growing the Greenbelt. By expanding Greenbelt protection to critical drinking water sources, healthy watersheds and rivers, we’ll have an abundant supply of clean water for nature, agriculture and rural communities. .

Nine in ten Ontarians say growing the Greenbelt is important to protect water, farmland, and natural habitats from sprawl. The region must accommodate an estimated 4 million more residents by 2041 without increasing pressure on vulnerable water supplies that rural communities rely on. Creating a bigger Greenbelt will ensure growth pressures, drought and climate change do not endanger vulnerable water supplies.


Click here to see a larger version of the map.

The map shows proposed expansion areas that:

  • provide drinking water to 1.25 million people, and growing, are critical to the agricultural sector and support biodiversity in the region;
  • align with existing criteria developed by the province to grow the Greenbelt;
  • respond to growth pressures on important sensitive environmental lands and the continuation of sprawl in select regions; and
  • are located outside of current urban boundaries needed to accommodate growth to 2041, and beyond.

    Sign up if you support strengthening and growing the Greenbelt.

    Backgrounder - Growing the Greenbelt to Protect Vulnerable Water Resources in the Greater Golden Horseshoe Region