Today, Council approved the City’s Parks Plan, a comprehensive document that outlines Mississauga’s city-wide parkland needs now and in the future. As the city continues to intensify, the Parks Plan will guide how much parkland Mississauga requires, where it is needed and how to acquire it.
“Throughout the pandemic, we’ve seen just how important Mississauga’s parks and public spaces are to the health and well-being of our residents,” said Mayor Bonnie Crombie. “As Mississauga continues to grow, we need to make sure we have a way to deliver new vibrant parks and recreational amenities in our communities. It’s critical to the long-term health of our residents and our city.”
The Parkland Conveyance By-law, which outlines the City’s process to acquire parks and collect cash-in-lieu of parkland when development occurs, is being updated based on projected growth in Mississauga and recent changes to the Planning Act. The Parks Plan, a requirement of the Planning Act, is an important step in the by-law review process. It will support the updated by-law by demonstrating the need for land dedication and/or cash-in lieu of parkland for new developments. Cash in-lieu is a cash payment in place of dedicating land for parks within a development.
Funds collected through this policy are used to purchase parkland in key areas that will be under-served given the population growth.
The Parks Plan builds on the public and stakeholder consultation undertaken for the 2019 Future Directions Parks Master Plan and incorporates recent input from consultations with school boards and the development industry. It updates parkland provisions – or the amount of parkland required across the city based on population/existing parkland – to better reflect and respond to current conditions, emerging needs and future demands. It also establishes ways to prioritize parkland acquisition going forward.
“We know the value our connected, vibrant outdoor public spaces bring to the residents of Mississauga. While we’re very proud of our parks system, our analysis shows that parkland deficits exist across the city,” said Jodi Robillos, Commissioner of Community Services. “As land values increase and our population intensifies, our Parks Plan will be a key tool in ensuring that we continue to grow, connect and develop parkland for all Mississauga residents.”
The Parks Plan recommends a shift in how the City determines the amount of parkland we need to better reflect the type of urban development underway in Mississauga. Key recommendations include:
- Moving from a city-wide parkland target to one that focuses on local areas. This will help pinpoint areas with the greatest need for parkland.
- Setting specific measures for local parks based on population size and growth, walking distance to playgrounds and access to local parks and facilities.
- Prioritizing ways to secure new parkland where it is needed most.
A report summarizing the Parks Plan and the methodology being used to update the Parkland Conveyance By-law is available for review and feedback. The draft Parkland Conveyance By-law will come to Council for approval in May 2022.
Staff are also continuing to work on by-laws to support two other important growth funding tools: Development Charges and the new Community Benefits Charge.
Learn more Mississauga’s growth funding tools.