What is an Official Plan?

    An Official Plan is a document that describes the County’s vision for the future.  It explains how the vision will be achieved through policies that direct buildings, housing, roads, parks and natural areas and public spaces. The Official Plan establishes the goals, objectives, and land use policies to ensure that the future needs of the community are met.

    Why is the County Reviewing the Official Plan?

    The Province requires the County review the Official Plan on a regular basis. The review process also requires the County to revisit important policies, such as the location and type of housing, access to a wide range of jobs, protection of natural areas and support for agricultural uses.

    What is a Municipal Comprehensive Review and why is it required?

    The Dufferin County Official Plan provides the guidelines for land use in Dufferin County and its eight local municipalities. The County is undertaking a Municipal Comprehensive Review (MCR) to update its Official Plan to conform to the new Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe, which came into effect on May 16, 2019. This exercise is required to be completed by 2022, which is a deadline established by the Province. Local municipalities are required to bring their Official Plans into conformity with the County Official Plan and the Growth Plan within one year of the County MCR being approved and in effect. The MCR process of the 2019 Growth Plan requires an integrated approach to planning for complete communities to 2041. 

    How can I get involved?

    Register for updates at public events or through the Join in Dufferin MCR webpage. Visit us at future events and initiatives which will be held across the County.

    Are an Official Plan and Municipal Comprehensive Review the same thing?

    Yes and no. Any municipality can undertake an Official Plan Review. However, the County is an upper-tier municipality, and the review of an upper-tier Official Plan is also referred to as a Municipal Comprehensive Review (MCR).

    Who is involved in the MCR process?

    The Municipal Comprehensive Review is a collaborative effort between Dufferin County, planning consultant WSP, and local municipalities. The County is responsible for overseeing the MCR project, working with local municipalities. Municipal Council and staff will provide input and feedback into the process. 

    We are also looking to the Dufferin community for feedback.

    What matters will be addressed through the MCR process?

    The MCR will address such matters as: 

    • A provincially mandated land needs methodology (which is still being developed); 

    • Growth forecasts and allocations (which are still being developed); 

    • Intensification targets within Built up areas; 

    • Employment areas; 

    • Greenfield area density targets; 

    • Settlement boundary expansions; 

    • Natural heritage systems; and, 

    • Agricultural systems. 

    This MCR process will also help answer the following questions: 

    • Where will future residents live? 

    • What types of houses will be built? 

    • Where will people work? 

    • How will we move around the County? 

    • How will we protect our agricultural areas and natural features?

    What are the applicable policy's and legislations that are concurred to the MCR process?

    • This will include but not be limited to: 

    • The Provincial Policy Statement, 2020; 

    • Provincial Plans; 

    • Greenbelt Plan (2017); 

    • Niagara Escarpment Plan (2017); 

    • A Place To Grow: Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe (2019); and, 

    • Connecting the Southwest: Draft Transportation Plan (2020) 

    • The County of Dufferin and local Official Plans; and, 

    • Recent provincial legislation, including amendments to the Planning Act, Clean Water Act, the Strong Communities Through Affordable Housing Act, and the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act introduced through: 

    • Bill 73 (Smart Growth for Our Communities Act, 2015); 

    • Bill 139 (Building Better Communities and Conserving Watersheds Act, 2017); 

    • Bill 66 (Restoring Ontario’s Competitiveness Act, 2019); and, 

    • Bill 108 (More Homes More Choice Act, 2019).

    What studies and reports are already underway?

    Dufferin County and its consultant, WSB, have conducted the following studies and reports: 

    • Land Needs Assessment  

    • Transportation Master Plan 

    • Natural Heritage System Strategy  

    • Sustainability and Climate Change Resiliency 

    Where can we find the outcomes of the studies and reports?

    The MCR studies are still in the draft, and will be released upon completion. Subscribe (via the box at the top of this webpage) to receive updates on this.

    What kind of public engagement has taken place so far?

    The following public engagement sessions have already taken place: 

    • Public Open House held on March 3, 2020 

    • Public Meeting & Special Meeting of Council (Section 26) on March 12th, 2020 

    • Stakeholder Advisory Committee (SAC) held on May 28, 2020 

    The MCR team are planning to launch further community engagement in Q3 of 2022. Subscribe to receive regular notifications of upcoming info sessions.  

    Where can I learn more about the MCR process?

    Community members can stay informed, subscribe for updates and get involved via the Official Plan information page, here.

    We also encourage you to tune into council meetings for the latest developmentsCouncil meeting recordings and agendas can be found at https://www.dufferincounty.ca/council/council-meetings. 

    I have more questions. Who can I contact for more information?

    You can submit any questions or suggestions on the MCR project via our online engagement portal, Joinin Dufferin. Scroll to the bottom of the page and select the “Get Involved” tab.