The Planning and Housing Committee will consider the Decision Report for the proposed Official Plan Amendment 680 on July 11, 2024.

The City is undertaking two Official Plan Amendments (OPA), OPA 668 and 680, in response to provincial legislative changes made to the Planning Act through Bill 97 (Helping Homebuyers, Protecting Tenants Act, 2023) that amends the definition of “area of employment” and introduces a transition provision for land uses that are excluded from the definition.

The definition of “area of employment” has been amended to narrow the scope of uses that are permitted in these areas. Under the amended definition manufacturing uses, warehousing uses (including uses related to the movement of goods), and research and development in connection with manufacturing are the primary uses permitted within an “area of employment”. Commercial uses, including stand-alone retail and stand-alone office uses, and institutional uses (e.g., schools and day cares) have been explicitly identified as uses not permitted within an “area of employment”.

OPA 668, which was considered and adopted by City Council on July 20, 2023, will introduce new policies to section 4.6 of the Official Plan to authorize lawfully established commercial uses and institutional uses to continue in the City’s Core Employment Areas and General Employment Areas. OPA 668 is intended to come into effect shortly after the amended definition of “area of employment” comes into force.

OPA 680 will amend various policies in the Official Plan to bring the plan into conformity with the amended definition of “area of employment”. The OPA will, among other things, alter the land use permissions for the City’s Employment Areas. Draft policy directions for OPA 680 was adopted with amendments by the Planning and Housing Committee on November 30, 2023. Staff will be undertaking a local-based analysis of existing uses that highlights potential impacts to the businesses within the City’s Core Employment Areas and General Employment Areas, and will be continuing to consult on the draft policy directions with Councillors, industry, other stakeholders, and the general public. Staff will report back with recommended Official Plan amendments before the Province proclaims the amended Planning Act definition of “area of employment.”

OPA 668 was considered and adopted by City Council on July 20, 2023. OPA 668 is not in effect. Please see the staff report.

A report on draft policy directions for OPA 680 was considered and adopted with amendments by the Planning and Housing Committee on November 30, 2023. Please see the staff report.

Public Open House – June 19, 2024

The project team held a virtual public open house to present the proposed draft Official Plan Amendment 680. These proposed policies are designed to amend various policies in the Official Plan to bring the plan into conformity with the amended definition of “area of employment” and will be considered by the Planning and Housing Committee on July 11, 2024.

A copy of the Open House Presentation is available.

Public Open House – September 19, 2023

A virtual public open house was hosted by the City of Toronto on September 19, 2023 to provide an overview of the work the City is undertaking to bring the Official Plan into conformity with the amended definition of “area of employment” in the Planning Act and to provide an update on the Expanding Uses in Employment Areas study.

A copy of the Open House Presentation is available.