1.3 TRANSIT VISION 2040 FROM VISION TO ACTION THEME 1: PUTTING TRANSIT AT THE CENTRE OF COMMUNITIES. Fully integrate transit with community planning

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1 TRANSIT VISION 2040 FROM VISION TO ACTION TRANSIT VISION 2040 defines a future in which public transit maximizes its contribution to quality of life with benefits that support a vibrant and equitable society, a complete and compact community form, a dynamic and efficient economy, and a healthy natural environment. THEME 1: PUTTING TRANSIT AT THE CENTRE OF COMMUNITIES STRATEGIC DIRECTION 1.3 Fully integrate transit with community planning

2 PUTTING TRANSIT AT THE CENTRE OF COMMUNITIES Strategic Direction 1.3: Fully integrate transit with community planning Transit and mobility plans should be systematically linked with a range of other plans for community development. There is a special symbiotic relationship between land use and transit plans through which each supports and shapes the other transit needs the right land use to function effectively and efficiently, and developments need transit to maximize their value. Land use and transportation plans need to address issues like transit-oriented development standards (e.g. mix, density, design) in key nodes and corridors, pedestrian-supportive streetscaping, and transit corridor protection requirements. Transit s role and needs should be considered within regional and municipal plans for land use, environmental management, and social or economic development. These transit considerations should be a key component of development approvals processes. Cities and regions should work towards developing more compact communities that transit can serve efficiently. Residential and employment density should be concentrated in key nodes and corridors to support frequent and efficient transit service. A mix of transit-supportive land uses should be encouraged in close proximity to transit stops and stations for convenience and improved access to local services and amenities. A range of housing options should be provided with special emphasis on a high level of accessibility to transit. 2

3 PERFORMANCE INDICATORS AND TARGETS Indicator 1: Population Density City- or Region-wide Density Targets: Community Group Average Population Density in 2010 (people per square kilometre) 2040 Population Density Target (people per square kilometre) Major metropolitan areas (pop. 2 million or greater) Large cities (pop. 400,000 to 2 million) Medium cities (pop. 150,001 to 400,000) Small cities (pop. 50,000 to 150,000) Small & rural communities (pop. less than 50,000) Indicator 2: Transit Accessibility Population and Employment Transit Accessibility Targets: Major metropolitan areas frequent service (minimum 8 departures per hour during peak periods) Large cities Medium cities Small cities Small & rural communities frequent service (minimum 8 departures per hour during peak periods) frequent service (minimum 6 departures per hour during peak periods) frequent service (minimum 4 departures per hour during peak periods) frequent service (minimum 2 departures per hour during peak periods) Indicator 3: Transit Considerations in Development Decisions Target for Consideration of Transit in Development Decisions: All community groups By 2040, all Canadian municipalities and regions will ensure that all approved development promotes transit use and transit service expansion to the greatest extent possible. Transit considerations can be incorporated into a variety of planning policies and documents, including: Community Plan policies Zoning By-laws Site Plan Control processes Plans of Subdivision 3

4 INITIATIVES AND BEST PRACTICES Community Plans of a variety of forms can be used to enact policies that direct compact and mixed use development around transit stops and stations, reduce parking requirements where convenient transit options are available, and develop new transit-supportive neighbourhoods to facilitate transit service expansion. Ottawa, Ontario The link between transit and land use planning is emphasized throughout the City of Ottawa s Official Plan (OP). Areas along the City s rapid transit network are designated Mixed Use Centres for their potential for high densities and a mix of land uses. The OP sets minimum employment targets for these lands, requires the Zoning By-law to set maximum parking requirements within 600m of rapid transit stations, encourages shared parking among uses peaking during different time periods, and encourages transitsupportive land uses such as educational institutions, hotels, hospitals, community centres, daycare centres, offices, retail, and services. Development applications within Mixed Used Centres and within 600m of existing and proposed transit stations are to be evaluated using criteria outlined in the OP. Brantford, Ontario The City of Brantford s OP requires transit-supportive community planning and design principles to be incorporated into all development or redevelopment. This includes incorporating transit stops into new developments where necessary, bringing buildings close to the street, and providing a grid street pattern. The OP calls for development of pedestrian pathways and transit stops that ensures a maximum distance of 400m to transit, or a five-minute walk, is maintained. Special provisions are included in the OP for the intensification and connectivity of Brantford s downtown Major Transit Station area. Strathcona, Alberta Strathcona s Transit Master Plan was developed with extensive public consultation. The Plan aims to meet transportation needs associated with community growth over a ten-year period from 2013 to 2023, addressing the need to integrate transit with land use planning. Subdivision plans with diverse housing types and densities, along with a permeable active transportation network, are encouraged. Vancouver, British Columbia The Vancouver Transportation Plan views transportation within the broader context of community livability. It was first released in 1997 after a series of public meetings. Although the City s population has been growing since its implementation, the Plan does not allow for road capacity increases in Vancouver s Downtown; increased transportation demands are to be met with transit and active modes. Since the release of the Vancouver Transportation Plan, the number of vehicle trips entering and leaving the City per capita has decreased dramatically. From 1996 to 2006, when population and employment growth led to a 23% overall increase in trips to and from the City, the total number of vehicles entering and leaving the City decreased by 10%. Waterloo, Ontario Community Improvement Plans (CIPs) can address the unique development potential and goals of specific land areas. In Ontario, under the Planning Act, an approved CIP allows municipalities to pass by-laws to facilitate development or redevelopment in the specified area. The Region of Waterloo Reurbanization Community Improvement Plan (RRCIP) applies to the region s 7,500-hectare area along the Central Transit Corridor (CTC) and aims to direct new development into these targeted areas. Goals and objectives of the RRCIP include providing transit -supportive density, improving visual quality, revitalizing older and underutilized areas, and providing opportunity to develop new rapid transit facilities. The RRCIP outlines criteria for identifying priority sites for development or redevelopment, such as destination sites or sites with adaptive reuse potential. 4

5 INITIATIVES AND BEST PRACTICES Transit Oriented Development Calgary, Alberta (TOD) Guidelines can be created and made available to municipal and regional staff, Council, local developers, and community members to encourage and guide development in a transitsupportive manner. TOD involves medium to high densities and a mix of land uses in areas that are typically within a five to ten-minute walk of a major transit stop or station. A number of Canadian municipalities, including Calgary, Edmonton, Hamilton, and Ottawa, have released TOD guidelines outlining how development around transit stations should occur. These guidelines allow for city-specific TOD strategies to be implemented based on the current transit system in place, community needs, and future goals. The City of Calgary s Transit Oriented Development Policy Guidelines (TODPG) guide how development should occur within 600m of an existing light rail transit (LRT) station or a bus rapid transit (BRT) station that will be converted into an LRT station in the future. The TODPG clearly outlines six policy 1. Ensure transit-supportive uses 2. Increase density around transit stations 3. Create pedestrian-oriented design 4. Make each station area a place 5. Manage parking, bus, and vehicular traffic 6. Plan in context with local communities A Transit Oriented Development Framework is currently being developed to replace the TODPG and will guide land use and development around both LRT and BRT stations. With Calgary s high growth rate, TOD has become a planning priority as a mechanism to reduce outward expansion or sprawl. A number of TOD projects have been implemented in recent years. For example, the Chinook LRT station was surrounded by low-density commercial and industrial developments until implementation of the Chinook Station Area Plan began in This Plan aimed to guide higher density, mixed use development with transit-supportive community design guidelines. objectives: Chinook Station Area land use concept (bottom), as compared with a figure ground map prior to Chinook Station Area Plan implementation (top). Zoning By-laws can be used as a policy tool to encourage transit-oriented development patterns. Zoning can be adapted to allow for high densities, mixed use buildings, transit-supportive uses, and reduced parking requirements in existing transit nodes and corridors. New compact and diverse neighbourhood centres can also be developed with the strategic use of zoning to plan for future transit service expansion. Montreal, Quebec The 2009 Master Plan for Namur/Jean-Talon Sector called for a change from large industrial buildings and wide streets (top images) to a vibrant, mixed use and pedestrian-oriented community with social housing provisions (bottom) in the Namur metro station area. Montreal has recently used rezoning as a tool to create several transit-oriented developments around metro stations. The car dealerships and parking lots comprising the old industrial land surrounding the Namur and de la Savane stations have been zoned to allow for a mix of high density residential buildings, transit-supportive commercial uses, and a network of green spaces. The redevelopment plans additionally include the provision of affordable housing. New condo units are quickly selling and bringing thousands of new residents into the area. 5

6 INITIATIVES AND BEST PRACTICES Setting Density Targets for Local Transit Hubs is a method that can be used by municipalities and regions to work towards transit-supportive development patterns. A number of studies have been carried out to determine minimum localized population and employment densities that are needed to support transit depending on the transit mode and the frequency of service. Land use planning practices can aim to maximize the proportion of developed land that meets these minimum densities. Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area (GTHA), Ontario The provincial transit agency Metrolinx launched the initiative The Big Move in 2008 to guide regional transportation improvements over a 25-year period. As a part of The Big Move, Metrolinx has released Mobility Hub Guidelines for the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area (2011). Mobility Hubs are identified as areas where two or more regional transportation routes intersect and potential exists to achieve densities of at least 10,000 people and jobs within an 800-metre radius. identified within the GTHA. A total of 51 Mobility Hubs have been A major focus of the document is achieving transit-supportive land use densities and transit mode shares for mobility hubs. Metrolinx provides suggested population and employment densities to support various types of mobility hubs according to the predominant transit mode. These targets are provided in the excerpted table below. Although these targets are directed towards maximizing transit ridership in a major metropolitan area, similar principles can be applied within smaller communities. Metrolinx s initiatives to increase population and employment densities near transit work in conjunction with the 2006 Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe, which guides intensification and covers the entire land area of the GTHA and surrounding regions. The Growth Plan sets target population and employment densities for identified Urban Growth Centres to achieve by A target of 400 people and jobs combined per hectare is set for heavily populated Urban Growth Centres including Downtown Toronto, Etobicoke Centre, and Yonge-Eglinton Centre; areas such as Downtown Hamilton, Mississauga City Centre, and Downtown Oshawa have a density target of 200 people and jobs per hectare; smaller Urban Growth Centres including Downtown Barrie, Downtown Peterborough, and Downtown Brantford have a target of 150 people and jobs per hectare by The Growth Plan aims to create vibrant, livable urban centres and encourage the use of sustainable modes of transportation. 6

7 COMMUNITY PLANNING CHECKLIST Is the transit system taking every opportunity to engage in a leadership role with the local planning department in the development of the Official Plan and Transportation Master Plan? Are all development applications being carefully reviewed by the transit system to ensure that they facilitate and are supported effectively by transit? Are seniors housing developments, institutions, and commercial centres consistently being planned within close proximity to transit? Has the transit system sought opportunity to provide the planning department with a presentation on the benefits of more compact, better laid out communities for transit services? Is the transit system aware of recent work on the development of mobility hub guidelines? Metrolinx s Mobility Hub Guidelines for the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area are available at mobilityhubs/mobility_hub_guidelines.aspx Are by-laws in place to ensure that reduced levels of parking provision are required for development within 600 metres of rapid transit stations? This guide is one in a series designed to assist CUTA members with implementation of Transit Vision 2040 strategic directions for which they are in a leadership role. It incorporates performance indicators used in annual reporting at a national level to track progress towards 2040 targets. While CUTA is taking the lead for ten of these 27 strategic directions, the remaining 17 fall within the responsibility of other stakeholders, and these guides have been developed in order to provide support to CUTA members and encourage progress toward the Vision. The guides summarize the goals and objectives of each strategic direction, propose performance indicators and targets, illustrate best practices from transit systems across the country and provide a checklist to assist members in reviewing their progress. 7

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