Our City’s demographic has continued to change over the past twenty years. Fortunately, it has come time again to revisit the city’s Master Plan for the next two decades, and making the necessary changes to incorporate a new vision for a prosperous London, Ontario has been the talk of the town these past few weeks.
Of all the seemingly overwhelming figures mentioned there are two staggering statistics worth noting. One: London’s population is estimated to grow by another 77,000 by the year 2035. What does this mean? Well for starters, London needs more jobs. A growing population means a greater demand for work – simple. Two: public transit ridership has grown by 84% over the last twenty years. Now the source of some of these new jobs is by far one of the most interesting topics in the new plan. “Shaping our city around rapid transit” is among the ’10 Big Moves’ proposed, and by this the four (possibly five) major corners of the city will become connected via rapid transit running along the city’s major corridors. On polar ends of these transit lines will contain transit villages, or major hubs, consisting of compact multi-use structures and introducing a work-live environment to the major regions of the city. The word ‘intensification’ arose again, and that simply means populating fairly densely these proposed villages in order to combat issues of accessibility to rapid transit routes for many Londoners. Also among the list of ten big moves is the need to amplify the status of London’s artistic and cultural scene. Our City’s diversity and culture ought to be celebrated more frequently and the idea of bringing a cosmopolitan feel to the City is definitely something Londoners have long awaited. A comprehensive and detailed list of the big ten moves can be found onhttp://thelondonplan.ca/index.php#priorities, along with minute long videos accompanying each proposed move. Needless to say, Londoners remain anxious for the next steps regarding the Master Plan but an atmosphere of optimism and excitement was certainly present during the gathering at City Hall this past week.
LYAC Councillor, Ward 5