Shaping the Future of our Community
The Issues: Collingwood
Collingwood is facing several major decisions over the next few years. How the Town decides to move forward will shape the community for generations to come. Yvonne has the experience, integrity and common sense to lead Collingwood.
She envisions three main priorities for the Town:
Affordable Housing for those who work in Collingwood
Many Collingwood residents are suffering from the lack of housing that is affordable for seniors, families, and individuals.
Yvonne has been a member of the Town’s Affordable Housing Taskforce and understands clearly the problems facing our Town as real estate prices and rents have spiralled upwards.
Our Town is facing the prospect of no longer being a sustainable community as much of our workforce can no longer afford to live here. Many businesses are struggling to find employees because there is no place for them to live. Nurses, OPP recruits, resident doctors, seasonal workers and service and retail industry employees are examples of those struggling to find affordable homes.
We need real action on getting housing that is affordable for people who work in Collingwood.
Yvonne does not agree that just because affordable housing is a problem throughout Canada and the US there is nothing we can do.
As Mayor, Yvonne would immediately work to build affordable housing for the Town’s workforce, as a start to addressing this issue.
Her plan includes:
Creating a non-profit, either through the Town or in partnership with neighbouring Towns, to manage the development and construction of rental housing projects
Obtaining funding from the federal government, which has several streams of financial support available for affordable housing projects, as well as using social finance tools
Using land owned by the Town to reduce costs
Engage and encourage participation by the Provincial Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing
Yvonne knows what the problem is and that we need to take immediate action. Her plan would put keys in hands in the very near future.
Development that respects our Town
Collingwood is growing quickly. New families are arriving, our population is aging and both the Province and County of Simcoe have mandated that Collingwood must plan for a significantly larger population. Yvonne’s priority is to ensure that the Town makes smart decisions on where new housing should be located and that development respects the existing community. This includes:
Preserving our heritage and the environment
Ensuring that Collingwood gets all the community benefits it is entitled to from developers and builders
Ensuring that any new development puts the needs of our community front and centre in their plans
There are several significant development projects on the radar that have the potential to transform our town. Yvonne has a plan to make sure that Collingwood comes out ahead:
The Grain Terminals
The Terminals are one of Collingwood’s landmarks. Yvonne’s daughter even used them in her wedding photos. Any changes to them will have a significant impact on the Town’s image, the downtown and waterfront. A redevelopment will also be a huge capital project from infrastructure, building, land use planning, environmental and design points of view.
As Mayor, Yvonne will:
Ensure that the negotiations with the successful developer will protect all of our Town’s interests
Work to ensure an attractive, financially viable project on the site that will enhance recreational opportunities, our parklands and public access to the water
A New Hospital
If the Province decides to relocate our hospital and build a new one on Poplar Road, decisions will need to be made on detailed site planning for the new hospital (like the siting of the building, public access, ambulance entrances, lighting, connection to the trail network and so on) to make sure it works for the community now and far into the future. Decisions will also have to made on the future use of the current hospital property. The existing hospital property is potentially a major new development site for the Town.
As Mayor, Yvonne will:
Work with the community, hospital and Province to ensure the best outcome for Collingwood and our hospital.
Poplar Regional Health & Wellness Village
This is a project proposed for the lands to the east of Georgian College on the north side of Poplar Road. The developers are proposing several thousand housing units and two million square feet of commercial, health care and other uses. If the Province approves funding for a new hospital to be built, it is also proposed to be located here. This project will have an impact far beyond anything ever built before in Collingwood.
Council has approved in principle the request of the proponent to move forward with a fast track planning approval called an MZO – Ministers Zoning Order.
In her previous career as a lawyer, Yvonne had experience negotiating large deals and she knows exactly what Collingwood needs to have in place to protect our Town.
As Mayor, Yvonne will, among other things:
Ensure that all the promises made by the proponent for this project are firmly enshrined in any final MZO.
Secure the value in money or other community benefits that our Town is entitled to by our approving of this massive project
A Livable Collingwood
We need to create a sustainable and livable Town for our residents. To ensure Collingwood supports everyone, as Mayor Yvonne will:
Ensure that the Town works to protect the environment, by:
o Developing a climate plan with targets for the Town
o Encouraging, and mandating whenever possible, that developers build in a climate-friendly, healthy and resilient way
o Building a more cycle friendly and pedestrian friendly transportation network
o “Greening” of Town operations, including the electrification of buses
o Continuing to promote initiatives to plant and protect trees in the community, building on the unprecedented $500,000 private donation Yvonne helped to secure in 2019 for the planting of trees in Town
Continue her work to attract new family doctors
As Vice-Chair of the Physician Recruitment Committee, Yvonne successfully convinced the Province to lift the cap on the number of family doctors that can set up a practice in Collingwood. This work continues to now attract the new family doctor that the Town badly needs
Work to increase daycare spaces.
The $10-a-day child-care program announced by the Provincial government will require more spaces. Yvonne has already obtained the support of Council to have our Official Plan consultant report back on how we can secure space for this important need.
Implement policies to create all-age friendly neighbourhoods, like traffic calming measures and lower speed limits on residential streets
Support the building of a long-overdue multi-use recreation centre
Support the building of a regional arts and entertainment centre