Brampton Just Got its First Ever Urban Design Review Panel

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Brampton is Canada’s ninth largest city and it’s constantly growing. With that in mind, it’s no surprise that Brampton just got its own team of people dedicated to reviewing the Flower City’s development in the coming years.

A plethora of development, particularly when it comes to condos, and of course other big projects around the city, are slowly but surely making Brampton ready for the future, at least in the realm of planning and development.

The main advantage that Brampton has, and a major difference in comparison to Mississauga, is that there is land west of the city that can still be developed.

But there is a challenge in developing those lands - a familiar pattern of putting up sprawling development is still evident, such as this development next to a mega mall near the Mount Pleasant area in the west end of Brampton.

Which is why the City of Brampton just established its first ever Urban Design Review Panel (UDRP). According to the city, the UDRP will help elevate the role of urban design in all facets of city planning and building.

What exactly will the panel do?

The UDRP is an independent advisory body to the Planning and Development Services Department that’s set to provide professional design recommendations on various development applications and city-initiated studies. The intention is to utilize urban design assessments to compliment and inform the city's existing procedures and ensure that new projects contribute to a well designed community.

The panel met for the first time on March 27, and will continue to meet on a monthly basis. This is a two-year pilot project that will run until March 2020, when city staff will report back to Brampton City Council with findings and recommendations.

Brampton's Commissioner of Planning and Development Services will have the authority to require applications and special studies to be brought to the UDRP for review.

The volunteer members on the UDRP are:

The UDRP's scope and reach appears to be vast, as the list of projects that could fall under their review range from applications for residential and office buildings, schools, places of worship, mixed-use development applications, transit-oriented developments, important city parks and significant streetscapes.

"Recently we hosted a public engagement session showcasing our City's planning vision. Great urban design is a collaborative process, and it's a key component of a livable, sustainable and vibrant community - we heard how important well-designed buildings and inviting public spaces are to our residents and businesses. The Urban Design Review Panel is one of many great initiatives that helps position the City of Brampton to be future ready on a global scale," said Brampton Mayor Linda Jeffrey.

What do you think of Brampton's new UDRP?

Header Photo courtesy of John G. Williams Architects

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