What is a Municipal Comprehensive Review (MCR)?

    A Municipal Comprehensive Review (MCR) is a process by which the City brings its Official Plans into conformity with updated policies of the various Provincial plans that apply to Hamilton (Provincial Policy Statement, Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe, Niagara Escarpment Plan, Greenbelt Plan).

    What is Higher Order Transit?

    Transit that generally operates in its own dedicated right-of-way, outside of mixed traffic where possible, and therefore can achieve a speed and frequency of service greater than conventional transit. Higher order transit can include heavy rail (such as subways), light rail transit (such as streetcars), and buses in dedicated rights-of-way and is typically referred to as rapid transit.

    What is a Major Transit Station Area (MTSA)?

    The area within a 500 to 800 metre radius of a higher order transit station representing about a 10-minute walk. The City of Hamilton is currently planning for MTSAs in the lower city, including seventeen (17) LRT stations and three (3) GO stations.

    What is a Priority Transit Corridor?

    Transit corridors that are identified on Schedule 5 of the Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe for the purpose of implementing the Growth Plan. The Priority Transit Corridor identified in the Growth Plan is identified on Appendix B of the Urban Hamilton Official Plan and aligns with the Hamilton Light Rail Transit (LRT) project.

    What is Light Rail Transit (LRT)?

    A lightweight rail car rapid transit service operating on fixed rails in the right-of-way, usually at street-level, is typically propelled by overhead electrical wires, and offers a frequent, fast, reliable, comfortable and high quality service that is sustainable. Light rail transit (LRT) excludes heavy rail.

    What is a Protected Major Transit Station Area?

    A Protected Major Transit Station Area (PMTSA) is a sub-set of MTSAs where Inclusionary Zoning (IZ) may be applied. The City will determine which MTSAs should be PMTSAs. PMTSAs must be approved by the Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing. The City must update the UHOP to include policies to specify uses, identify minimum residents and jobs per hectare, and identify minimum densities within PMTSAs.

    What is intensification?

    The development of a property, site or area at a higher density than currently exists through redevelopment, the development of vacant and/or underutilized lots within previously developed areas, infill development, and the expansion or conversion of existing buildings.

    Why does the City of Hamilton need to delineate MTSA boundaries?

    As part of the City’s current Municipal Comprehensive Review (MCR), a new policy framework for MTSAs was added to the Urban Hamilton Official Plan (UHOP) through OPA 167, and supported by the Province on November 4, 2022. The current policies direct that the City will delineate MTSAs through a future Amendment to the UHOP.

    The Provincial Growth Plan establishes minimum density targets for MTSAs. In Hamilton, these densities are 160 people and jobs per hectare (pjh) for areas serviced by the LRT and 150 people and jobs per hectare for areas serviced by the GO transit rail network

    Why is intensification and development around transit important?

    Higher population and employment densities in close proximity to higher order transit infrastructure supports the long term viability of the transit service by increasing transit ridership and farebox revenue and contributes to a complete community with easy access to housing, jobs and local amenities.