Intensification Strategy



Official Plan Amendment 90

Below is OPA 90 regarding the Town's Intensification Strategy/Growth Plan conformity, as approved by the Ontario Municipal Board


Over 2009 and 2010, an Intensification Strategy was developed for the Town of Whitby. The firms Meridian Planning Consultants and planningAlliance led the development of the Intensification Strategy as a separate component of the Whitby Official Plan Review.

The intent behind preparing the Intensification Strategy was:

  • to implement Provincial policies regarding intensification as outlined in the Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe, and
  • to c onform to the Durham Region Official Plan, as amended through Regional Official Plan Amendment 128, also known as the Growing Durham exercise.

In summary, the Province requires a greater amount of new development to occur through the intensification of already built up areas and to reduce the reliance on development of new greenfield areas to accommodate growth. The Region of Durham, through the Growing Durham exercise, has directed that Whitby accommodate approximately 45% of all new growth from 2015 to 2031 through intensification. This is estimated at approximately 12,000 new residential units.

Select topics below to learn more about the Intensification Strategy:

Purpose of the Intensification Strategy

The Intensification Strategy has been developed to:

  • Explore the different types and forms of intensification that could be accommodated in Whitby.
  • Identify locations in the Town most suitable to accommodating intensification, described as Intensification Areas and Intensification Corridors .
  • Describe the characteristics of individual sites outside of Intensification Areas and Corridors and away from established neighbourhoods that may also be suitable for intensification, subject to Official Plan Amendment, described as Other Intensification Sites .
  • Establish criteria to guide the assessment of proposals for intensification development.

Process to Develop the Intensification Strategy

Public Workshop 1 - May 6, 2009

Development of the Intensification Strategy began with a public visioning workshop.

Public Workshop 2 - June 18, 2009

A second public workshop was held to explore and discuss the alternative scenarios for intensification identified following workshop 1, including:

  • How intensification alternatives can be planned to support the existing and emerging urban structure of the town.
  • Alternative forms that intensification could take in different neighbourhoods.
  • The criteria to be applied to select the preferred Intensification Strategy.


Open House - October 21, 2009

Following the two public workshops, the consultant team hosted an Open House session for the public to obtain feedback on:

  • A land use vision for intensification.
  • How to achieve a range of densities that also meet the minimum densities required for intensification as allocated to the Town by the Region.
  • The criteria to be considered when assessing intensification proposals.


Recommended Basis for the Intensification Strategy

Between November 2009 and January 2010 the project consultants prepared a report making recommendations to establish a policy basis for the Whitby Intensification Strategy. In February and March of 2010 a series of Special Meetings of Council were held to allow Council to receive the consultant report titled the 'Recommended Basis for the Intensification Strategy'. The Special Meetings also provided the public an opportunity to comment on the report.

February 2, 2010

February 16, 2010

March 18, 2010

Proposed Draft Official Plan Amendment - April 8, 2010

At a Special Meeting of Council on April 8, 2010 a Proposed Draft Official Plan Amendment to implement the Intensification Strategy was recommended by the consultant team. The Draft Amendment was provided for Council consideration and public comment.

Official Plan Amendment 89 - September 9, 2010

As a part of considering the Proposed Draft Official Plan Amendment for the Intensification Strategy, Council directed that the land use designation at the southeast corner of Victoria Street and Gordon Street be changed from "Residential" to "Major Open Space". This direction was implemented through Proposed Official Plan Amendment 89, which was approved at a Special Meeting of Council on September 9, 2010.

Official Plan Amendment 90 - September 9, 2010

Following consideration of comments received on the Proposed Draft Official Plan Amendment over the Summer of 2010, a Recommended Final Official Plan Amendment was prepared by the consultant team. At a Special Meeting of Council the Final Official Plan Amendment to implement the Intensification Strategy and to achieve Growth Plan conformity was presented to Council.

Official Plan Amendment 90 was approved at a Special Meeting of Council on September 9, 2010, (under appeal to the Ontario Municipal Board) excluding a small number of policies regarding Other Intensification Sites, which were referred back to staff for further review.

Revised Official Plan Amendment 90 - November 7, 2011

As requested by Council the consultant team reviewed the Other Intensification Sites policies that were referred back to staff on September 9, 2010. Revised policies for Other Intensification Sites were prepared and presented in the form of a Revised Official Plan Amendment 90 at a Special Meeting of Council.

Recommended Revised Official Plan Amendment 90 was approved by Council on November 7, 2011, subject to minor amendments.


You can obtain information about the Intensification Strategy component of the Whitby Official Plan Review and associated Official Plan Amendments 89 and 90 by contacting the Town of Whitby Planning Department.

Please reference the "Intensification Strategy" and quote file numbers OPA-2009-W/02 & OPA-2010-W/01.