The property near Thundering Waters Golf Club has been awaiting approval for a $1-billion development plan. The Niagara Region’s planning and development committee supported the pilot project and called on the province to allow for biodiversity offsetting on the property. After Kathleen Wynne signed a memorandum regarding direct foreign investment to Niagara while on a trade mission in China, it was announced that the there is real estate business from the Chinese government that will be a shareholder in the development.
Initial focus on biodiversity offsetting
Last year, the province introduced biodiversity offsetting as a potential policy direction with no net loss provision. For every one acre of wetland decommissioned, one acre would be restored elsewhere, although a response regarding to these recommendations won’t be had by the NPCA (National Parks Conservation Association) until later this year.
The wetlands are located in the middle of an important piece of the development and need to be moved to a more suitable location, according to Regional Chair Alan Caslin. The public have taken concern over the accountability of the developer to actually follow through regarding the biodiversity offsetting once promises are made, resulting in the NPCA looking for potential enforcement options such as cash deposits from developers.
Development proposal plans
GR Investments Ltd. is proposing to utilize 115 hectares of land to develop residential, commercial, institutional, and employment uses. The remaining 81 hectares of land is provincially significant wetlands and is to be protected through environmental protection area policies within the city’s Official Plan. With the current development plans taking place under current local, regional, and provincial legislation, staff have been quick to point out that the real estate property currently outlined in the development plans may be refined through the ongoing consultation process.
Final studies and a draft secondary plan have been in the works for the Thundering Waters development project, and once completed will be shared due to the scope and significance this project has with the public. The council’s support along with transparency throughout the development of the secondary plan is something GR Investments Ltd. is working hard to maintain.
The future of this development is still blurry, as the planning processes are still going to be ongoing for a bit of time. As the process continues, more real estate information will be released, and we’ll be able to further dive into the details of the development plans such as the housing breakdowns. If you’re looking for property for sale in the Niagara region, connect with Team Davids and get started on finding your dream home today.