What is the status of the Neighbourhood Planning Review (NPR) and the Planning Around Rapid Transit Stations (PARTS) projects?

    The planning review process that began with the PARTS Plans (Planning Around Rapid Transit Stations) and was advanced through the NPR (Neighbourhood Planning Review) project is now being continued through the Growing Together project.

    The Growing Together project builds upon that previous work done with the community while also responding to new direction from the province, implementing the updated Regional Official Plan, and addressing new and emerging City priorities.

    What new direction and priorities has emerged from the Province, Region of Waterloo, and City since we last engaged on the NPR project?

    Over the last several years:

    • The housing supply and affordability crisis has worsened.
    • Kitchener City Council has declared a climate emergency (June 2019).
    • The Region of Waterloo has finalized the boundaries for Kitchener’s Major Transit Station Areas (August 2022).
    • The Region of Waterloo Official Plan requires us to plan for a range and mix of housing including ‘missing middle’ housing.
    • The Province has:
      • Assigned Kitchener a growth target for 35,000 new units by the end of 2031, part of a provincial target for 1.5 million new homes in Ontario.
      • Limited inclusionary zoning to Major Transit Station Areas only. Inclusionary zoning allows cities to require affordable housing units as part of new development. 
      • Removed density bonusing from the Planning Act, which Kitchener used to secure community benefits and guide growth in our downtown.
      • Placed new limits on how much money the City and Region can collect as part of new development to pay for infrastructure.
    • There may be additional direction from the Province on MTSAs in 2023 and beyond. 

    Why is the City doing the Growing Together project?

    The Province and Region requires the City to plan for growth within our Major Transit Station Areas (MTSAs). The current land use permissions in our MTSA’s pre-dates the current Provincial and Regional framework for MTSAs and is required to be updated. The Growing Together project is an opportunity for the City to modernize our land use framework in our MTSAs and guide growth in the coming decades.

    When will the City be engaging on this project?

    Broad community and stakeholder engagement is scheduled to recommence in Spring 2023 and continue throughout the Summer of 2023.  The Engage page for the Growing Together project contains the most up-to-date details on engagement events.