Corp Comm Connects


Transit-supportive development: sharing the details

April 4, 2018
By Maryam Mirza

A report released today offers a framework to help municipal decisionmakers identify the types of interventions needed to improve local conditions in support of transit-supportive development.

The report by Pembina Institute showcases how municipalities in the GTHA are implementing effective approaches to ensure development supports transit. The case studies include Mount Pleasant Village in Brampton, the new LRT corridor in Hamilton, GO stations in Durham Region, Dundas Connects in Mississauga, and CIBC Square in Toronto.

Considering the significant population growth anticipated and the major rapid transit investment in Ontario, Pembina Institute transportation and urban solutions director and report author Lindsay Wiginton told NRU the institute wanted to get specific, to illustrative practical ways municipalities are connecting transit investments and new developments.

"In these briefs, our goal was to get more specific: what particular approaches are municipalities using in their complex real life situations across Ontario to get TSD from idea to reality?" Wiginton said.

While the objective of achieving transit-supportive development is not new, the case studies provide a shared framework detailing economic, infrastructure, policy and political factors to improve local conditions.

"Each context requires a different approach," she adds. "These briefs give examples of different tools to address these different situations, such as smart parking regulations, flexible zoning, integrated planning, and efforts to attract employers."

For example, Durham Region is shifting away from free parking through its parking strategy to encourage the use of other modes of travel such as walking, cycling and public transit. According to the report this is critical for encouraging transit ridership. Durham's parking strategy is part of its transportation master plan that was approved last December.

Durham transportation planning and economic development manager Prasenjit Roy told NRU the parking strategy includes zoning by-law amendments to reduce parking requirements in public lots. The region also supports Metrolinx in implementing paid parking at GO Transit station to encourage carpooling.