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Official Plan Review


The Town of Smiths Falls is pleased to announce that on August 8th, 2015 a resolution was passed accepting the revisions and modifications made by the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing to the Official Plan.  The Ministry will now take the steps to issue a formal Notice of Decision officially approving the Official Plan.  

The Planning Department would like to thank all those parties who participated in the public process for their engagement!


The Council of the Town of Smiths Falls is pleased to share with you the Adopted 2034 Official Plan.  The Plan has now been forwarded to the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing for approval.  Any party wishing to receive notice of approval of the Plan should contact MMAH directly.

*Update!*  The Official Plan Application was deemed complete by the Ministry on November 7th, 2014.  A decision regarding the Official Plan is anticipated in May, 2015.

Adopted Official Plan (October 2014). JL Richards and Associates.



Draft Official Plan (August 2014). JL Richards and Associates.

Draft Official Plan (July 2014). JL Richards and Associates.

2034 Official Plan - Policy Development Review (Part I).  (June 23, 2014). N. McKernan.

2034 Official Plan - Policy Development Review (Part II). (July 7, 2014). N. McKernan.

Staff want your feedback and there are lots of ways you can participate!  Get the details below...


How can you participate?

Official Plan's aren't affective tools, representative of the values of the community, without the input of citizens! That's why the province requires that municipalities consult with the public during the review process to gather input and feedback regarding how the community wants to see the Town develop. Our plan can only be as strong as the community that supports it!

*New* Public Meeting/Workshops

The Town will be holding a Public Meeting on August 18th, 2014 at 4pm in the Council Chambers (77 Beckwith Street N).  JL Richards and Associates will be reviewing the process to date and the Draft Official Plan.

Open House

An Open House will be conducted on August 7th, 2014 between 7pm-9pm at the Smiths Falls Memorial Community Centre (71 Cornelia Street W).  JL Richards and Associates and Town staff will be on hand to answer questions the public has regarding the new Official Plan.

Talk to the Planner!

The Town Planner, Niki McKernan, is also always keen to engage members of the community in thoughtful and constructive discussion - drop in and see her at Town Hall, call her at 613-283-4124 ext. 1116 or email her at nmckernan@smithsfalls.ca to talk about planning and the Official Plan!




What has happened to date?

*NEW* June 23rd/July 7th, 2014 - Draft Policy Reviewed by Council!

The Town has received its first Draft of the OP for review by staff and Council.  Once Council has provided feedback on some general policy directives, the Town and JL Richards and Associates will be scheduling public meetings and open houses for feedback!

The Council review of the policy (all 126 pages!) will take place in two sessions (June 23rd, and July 7th) in open Committee of the Whole.  Members of the public are more than welcome to attend the session.  The Presentations will be available for review below following their distribution to Council.

2034 Official Plan - Policy Development Review (Part I).  (June 23, 2014). N. McKernan.

2034 Official Plan - Policy Development Review (Part II). (July 7, 2014). N. McKernan.

*NEW* April 3rd, 2014 - Intensification Workshop

The Town in partnership with JL Richards and Associates hosted a public workshop to discuss Intensification policies for the new OP and garner ideas and concensus from the community on where intensification would be appropraite.  The following presentation was provided to the public to explain why intensification is a requirement for Official Plans and provide examples of how it can be implemented:

Intensification Workshop Presentation. (April 3, 2014). JL Richards and Associates.

February 12th, 2014 - Public Meeting

JL Richards and Associates has conducted a detailed analysis of the historical trends associated with growth as they relate to Land Use Planning.  They have also worked to compile changes associated with the provincial legislation that must be accomodated within the new Official Plan.  The research has resulted in the cultivation of two base documents for review by Council:

First Public Meeting Presentation. (February 18, 2014). JL Richards and Associates.

Smiths Falls Issues Identification Report. (February 2014).  JL Richards and Associates.

Smiths Falls Land Needs Background Study. (February 2014).  JL Richards and Associates.


Official Plan Comprehensive Review

The Town of Smiths Falls is in the process of working in a partnership with land use planning experts at the firm of JL Richards and Associates and the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing (MMAH) to undertake the required comprehensive review of the Town's Official Plan. The purpose of the review is to garner public opinion regarding the future development of the Town as a center for residential growth and economic commerce, and to amend the plan to appropriately implement the goals and objectives of the Provincial Policy Statement.


 In the News!

Have a Say on Where Intensification Happens in Town.  Smiths Falls Record News.  Howaida Sorour.  March 20, 2014.

Official Plan Review Meeting Feb. 18th.  Smiths Falls Record News.  Howaida Sorour.  February 6, 2014.

In Focus - Tuesday February 11, 2014 - Nicole McKernan.  Lake88.1.  Maureen Pegg.  February 11, 2014.


Background on the Process

The Town's current Official Plan was adopted by Town Council and MMAH in 1993 and provided direction and forethought into the development of the Town for a twenty year period. Since its' approval the Town's landscape has changed greatly as the needs of the community and our geographic boundaries have matured.

In 2006 the Town began a comprehensive review of the Official Plan in collaboration with Delcan Consulting. A First Draft of the document was provided to the Town for review and was published on the Town's website for review in 2010. Since that time, the Town has undertaken numerous Master Planning initiatives including the Downtown Revitalization and Waterfront Integration Master Plan (2013); Downtown Community Improvement Plan (2013); and the Smiths Falls Cultural Master Plan (2013).

Check back soon to see our accomplishments to date!



What is an Official Plan?

An Official Plan is a document that describes and establishes policies for how land should and will be used in your municipality.

It is supported by your Town Council and adopted by MMAH.

Official Plans deal mainly with land use planner matters related to:

•where new housing, industry, offices and shops will be located
•what services like roads, watermains, sewers, parks and schools will be needed
•when, and in what order, parts of your community will grow
•community improvement initiatives

For more information about what Official Plans are check out the MMAH website or the Ministry's Citizen's Guide to Official Plans!