Brakes eased on proposed mid-peninsula
5, 2003 - Dennis Smith, Special to the Flamborough Review
over the proposed mid-peninsula highway may be easing up.
has been reached on two of three key issues concerning the mid-peninsula
transportation corridor, Burlington's mayor said yesterday.
made very good progress although we haven't completely reached an agreement,"
said Rob MacIsaac. "But we've come a long way. Now we have five pages
of amendments on the terms of reference."
Minister Frank Klees met with MacIsaac as well as Niagara and Hamilton
officials recently to try and jumpstart mid-peninsula plans.
parties involved will continue communicating via e-mails, letters and
agreed to provide our input within a week," said MacIsaac. "We'll likely
need to call a special council meeting in a week."
project, whose key feature is a proposed highway between Niagara and
Hamilton/Halton, was stalled earlier this summer.
officials fear it will be connected to Hwy. 407 in Burlington. Burlington
and Halton filed a lawsuit over the plans, prompting the province to
withdraw the Terms of Reference for its Environmental Assessment.
said there was agreement to establish an advisory group to allow for
all stakeholders to have input as the process moved forward and to have
rail and transit alternatives added into the Terms of Reference.
the third point still being negotiated is to ensure the Niagara Escarpment
receives the appropriate level of protection in the Terms of Reference.
we will reach agreement on that," said MacIsaac. "We're doing all we
can to advocate for no new cuts in the escarpment."
has been held in abeyance, but there's no agreement yet to fully withdraw
it, he said.
legal action, it was argued that unreasonable suggestions have been
made for creating the mid-peninsula highway and the planning process
has shown little regard for Halton residents' interests.
officials have described the project as the mid-peninsula transportation
corridor and say it could include a new highway, transit way or both.
warned a highway may be needed to serve major increases forecast for
population and traffic growth between Toronto and Niagara.
are being considered for the local connection with the mid-peninsula
highway, including Hwy. 407 near Walker's Line, an expanded Hwy. 403
on Hamilton Mountain, Hwy. 401 west of Milton and Hwy. 6 in Flamborough.
say the highway will be a toll road costing more than $1 billion that
will damage the environment while failing to alleviate traffic congestion.
Hamilton council approved the idea of the road, it has met with fierce
grassroots opposition, including that of a 1,000-strong Citizens Against
Paving the Escarpment.