Canada’s National Capital Greenbelt Master Plan Review: Public Consultation – Final Phase Feb.19-20, 2013

This video presents “Autumn in the Majestic Green Belt Forest” (2010):

  • “Autumn’s fall heralds a transition of life in the Green Belt Forest”

Above, National Capital Commission's map showing the the National Capital Region Boundary as a thick, dark green line. NCC wants to add some areas to the Greenbelt, which are represented as the the Potential Greenbelt Land areas shaded green with diagonal stripes.
Above, National Capital Commission’s map showing the the National Capital Region Boundary as a thick, dark green line. NCC wants to add some areas to the Greenbelt, which are represented as the the Potential Greenbelt Land areas shaded green with diagonal stripes.

As a Crown corporation of the Government of Canada, the National Capital Commission (NCC) is focused on conserving the natural and heritage features of the National Capital Greenbelt for future generations:

  • The National Capital Greenbelt’s purpose was to protect the rural land bordering the Capital from “haphazard urban sprawl”
  • The Capital Greenbelt is a 200 square kilometer of crescent land within the present-day boundaries of the city of Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, in which real estate development is strictly controlled:
    • The large natural and rural landscapes of the Greenbelt provide a distinct separation between the urban core of the City of Ottawa and its more suburban communities outside the Greenbelt such as Kanata, Orleans and Riverside South

  • Most of the Capital Greenbelt is owned and managed by the NCC
    • The rest is held by:
      • other federal departments such as military training, satellite communications research, agricultural research, defense communications monitoring, geotechnical research and energy and explosives research

      • private owners
  • Every 10 years the NCC will review the plan to ensure the continued protection of the Greenbelt
    • On January 25, 2012, the National Capital Commission (NCC) Board of Directors approved the Land Use Concept that implements the Vision for the 2067 Greenbelt that:

    The Greenbelt will forever protect natural systems, agriculture and opportunities for outdoor recreation and education that will inspire Canadians and contribute to the sustainability and quality of life in Canada’s Capital Region

    • “This vision depicts the type of Greenbelt we collectively wish to see in 50 years”

The National Capital Greenbelt is the largest publicly owned greenbelt in the world consisting of 20,000 hectares of green space, including:

  • Farms with prime agricultural lands in close proximity to a large urban population

  • Forests, wetlands, streams and sand dunes are in conservation areas that sustain biodiversity:
  • Several heritage features, including:
    • Log Farm, a living museum of an 1850’s pioneer homestead

    • Ruins of a 19th century lime kiln in Stony Swamp

    • The remains of the Carlsbad Springs, a former health spa and an Ontario heritage site

    • The Black Rapids Lockstation, part of the historic Rideau Canal (1832)

The four main roles of the Greenbelt are:

  1. Primary role ‐ Natural Environment

  2. Secondary role ‐ Sustainable Agriculture

  3. Secondary role ‐ Capital Experiences & Recreation

  4. Tertiary role ‐ Facilities

According to the 2012 Greenbelt Master Plan (Phase 1 – Step C), the Greenbelt was envisioned as part of “an organic system of parks and an uninterrupted network of verdure within the entire region” through “reservation of appropriate lands” to meet the objectives to:

  1. “establish a system of greenbelts framing dwelling areas and directly linked to the main rural belt” (the Greenbelt); and

  2. ensuring a sufficient reserve for the eventual establishment of public services necessitating environments of verdure and quietness”

Watercourses, urban parks, wooded areas and parkways were all described as part of this connected system of green.

An initial and rough estimate of the ecological goods and services provided by the Greenbelt to the Capital is approximately $73 million per year (2010) since the Greenbelt:

  • “provides a home for plants and trees

  • provides habitat for resident and transient wildlife populations

  • helps combat climate change by absorbing carbon dioxide

  • helps filter and clean our water

  • helps control flooding and erosion

  • produces fertile soil to sustain local farming”

Here is overview of the input provided by the public from previous consultations:

  • A strong preference that Greenbelt’s green spaces are maintained, increased and improved
  • A few survey respondents did note an opposing view of the challenges of acquiring additional Greenbelt lands and of working in partnership with others for natural areas protection
  • Support for and enhancement of Greenbelt recreation, particularly pathway connectivity to adjacent communities
  • Public seemed to misunderstand the meaning of the “Built Facilities” land designation and there is a general misconception about how development can occur on these lands
  • Discussion of the “Built Facility” role brought on a debate as to whether certain federal and other agency facilities should be included in the Greenbelt, and if so, residents support the view that they should become more “green” by showcasing technology and techniques that make the facilities more in harmony with the Greenbelt’s natural environment
  • Concerns on the possible effects of transportation infrastructure being built and developed in the Greenbelt
    • The idea that there should not be any, or at least limited, infrastructure development in the Greenbelt remains strong, as well as the desire to see no new roads

  • A strong public desire to see a plan (and a specific definition for) “sustainable agriculture,” that allows and showcases more diverse forms of agriculture in the Greenbelt including, but not limited to, market gardens and community gardening
    • For farm tenants within the Greenbelt, it was raised many times that the NCC needs to invest in and improve farm infrastructure, increase the length of farm leases, reduce farm size, and diversify farm products

    • A few participants disagree with having agricultural land within the Greenbelt, seeing these lands as options for urban development

Please click here to read the Greenbelt Master Plan Review – Summary – Phase 2 – Step D, Land Designations, Policies and Sector Plans – Draft (pdf: 774.83 KB) .

Learn more about the Greenbelt Master Plan Review.

Canada's National Capital Greenbelt Master Plan Review: Public Consultation – Final Phase Feb.19-20, 2013
Canada’s National Capital Greenbelt Master Plan Review: Public Consultation – Final Phase Feb.19-20, 2013

Greenbelt Master Plan Review

Public Consultation – Final phase

You can take part in the following final public consultation events for the proposed land designations, policies and sector plans that will guide the future of the National Capital Greenbelt.

  • Participate online:
    • From February 12 to March 1, 2013 you can also contribute your thoughts and ideas online:
  • The Agenda for the above Public Consultations: 
    • 6 pm to 7:30 pm: Open house

    • 7:30 pm to 8:10 pm: Presentation

    • 8:10 pm to 9:15 pm: Questions and answers

    • 9:15 pm to 9:30 pm: Closing remarks and one-on-one discussions

  • Here is the timeline of the National Capital Greenbelt Master Plan Review:
    • Public consultation on these detailed directions of the Master Plan will occur in February 2013

    • Finalization of the Step D summary report and Master Plan document will consider the public input as well as that of all stakeholders

    • The NCC Board of Directors will provide an approval this Step D summary report in April 2013

    • The full Greenbelt Master Plan will be tabled to the NCC Board in June 2013

Contact Info:

Émilie Girard-Ruel, Senior Officer, Public Consultations at:

  • 613-239-5777 (TTY: 613-239-5090)

The following text is in French:

Révision du Plan directeur de la Ceinture de verdure

Consultation publique – étape finale

Participez à la dernière consultation publique sur les désignations de terrains, les politiques et les plans de secteur proposés qui orienteront l’avenir de la Ceinture de verdure de la capitale nationale.

Renseignez-vous au sujet de la révision du Plan directeur de la Ceinture de verdure

Participez en ligne : 
Du 12 février au 1er mars 2013 :

Participez en personne :

1er atelier

Le mardi 19 février 2013,
de 18 h à 21 h 30
Sportsplex de Nepean, salles A et B
1701, avenue Woodroffe, Ottawa

2e atelier

Le mercredi 20 février 2013,
de 18 h à 21 h 30
Terrain de golf municipal Pine View
1471, chemin Blair, Ottawa

Ordre du jour:

18 h à 19 h 30
Portes ouvertes

19 h 30 à 20 h 10

20 h 10 à 21 h 15
Questions et réponses

21 h 15 à  21 h 30
Mot de la fin et discussions un à un

Si vous avez des questions ou des commentaires, veuillez communiquer avec Émilie Girard-Ruel, Agente principale, Consultations publiques,
613-239-5777 (ATS : 613-239-5090) ou par courriel au .


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