MEDIA ADVISORY/PHOTO OP: Conference links experts and citizens in a focus on building better  communities under Ontario’s new city planning rules

Media invited to panel discussions on smart growth, deconstructing NIMBYism and an address from Municipal Affairs Minister Mauro

Toronto, Ont. – On Tuesday, April 17, the Beyond the Backyard: Exploring the Future of Community-Building Conference will explore the new roles citizens will play in Ontario’s new community planning system.  The conference will address how citizens can make sure development plans fit their neighbourhood, how to have their voice heard, and how to engage their municipal planning system.

The conference will be divided into two sessions, followed by a reception:

1. Morning: Presentation on Ontario’s newly revised Growth Plan and new methods of visualizing density, followed by an interactive workshop on community engagement tools for citizens. This session has been tailored specifically for ratepayer groups and citizens.

2. Afternoon: Panel discussions with expert speakers and community members; ending with a roundtable discussion.  The afternoon sessions provide an opportunity to share perspectives and best practices in community engagement.

WHAT: Beyond the Backyard: Exploring the Future of Community-Building Conference

WHEN: Tuesday, April 17, 2018

WHERE: Rotman School of Management, U of T. Desautels Hall, 2nd floor, 105 St. George St, Toronto


9:35 a.m. — The Importance of Growth Plan Implementation, David Crombie, Former Toronto Mayor

12:30 p.m. — Minister Bill Mauro, Municipal Affairs

1:30 p.m. — Panel Discussion: Growing up Green, not Greenfield with Moderator: Marcy Burchfield, Neptis Foundation; Panelists: Urban Designer and Author, Ken Greenberg; Daniel Fusca, Toronto City Planning; Steve Dulmage, Urban Equation

2:45 p.m. — Panel Discussion: Deconstructing NIMBY or Democratizing Planning with Moderator: Ray Tomalty; Panelists: Amy Schnurr, Burlington Green; Sony Rai, Architect and Founder Sustainable Vaughan; Victor Doyle, Planner


About ENVIRONMENTAL DEFENCE ( Environmental Defence is Canada’s most effective environmental action organization. We challenge, and inspire change in government, business and people to ensure a greener, healthier and prosperous life for all.


If you are planning to attend or require additional information, please contact: Stephanie Kohls, Environmental Defence, 416-323-9521 ext. 232; 416-885-7847 (cell);