What is an Official Plan?

An Official Plan describes policies on how land in a community should be used. It is prepared with input from your community and helps to ensure that future planning and development will meet the specific needs of your community. 

The Municipality of Meaford Official Plan guides all land use decisions and development strategies. It contains the goals and objectives of our community and establishes policies to direct the form, location, nature and rate of growth and change for the future.

This means when development proposals come forward for consideration, they are not reviewed in isolation, but in the framework of the guiding policies of the Official Plan. 

Official Plans have legal status, deriving their authority from the Planning Act of Ontario, and all Municipal public works and by-law must conform to the Official Plan and its standards.

The Official Plan provides a strong level of policy guidance for land use, but the legislative implementation of the Official Plan is accomplished through by-laws. One of the main reasons for having an Official Plan is to provide a framework to structure the Zoning By-law.  The Zoning By-law must conform to, and implement the policies of, the Official Plan. 

The Planning Act of Ontario requires that the Municipality to revisit their Official Plan every 10 years.  Meaford recently completed a review of the Meaford Official Plan and Meaford Council adopted an amendment to update the Official Plan. The County of Grey is the Approval Authority for the Meaford Official Plan and approved the Official Plan Amendment 34, with modifications on March 23, 2023. This decision is now in force and effect. 

 Official Plan and Maps 

Below you will find the 2024 Office Consolidation of the Municipality of Meaford Official Plan. An "Office Consolidation" is a version of the Plan that includes approved amendments over time.  The version below includes the 10 year update approved by the County of Grey in March of 2023 (known as OPA 34). 

Maps:

Amending the Official Plan

In some cases, an amendment to the Official Plan may be needed because  specific policies or constraints on properties do not allow a property owner to proceed with development.

The Official Plan should only be amended when the policies of the Plan do not address site specific issues, or when issues have been raised with respect to site specific proposals that must be addressed in a comprehensive manner. A common reason for amending the plan is that the general nature of the Plan's policies may not recognize the potential - or limitations - of a particular property.

How to Apply

Before  applying to amend the Official Plan, you will need to consult with the Municipality first through a mandatory consultation process. To book a Pre-Application Consultation with Planning staff to discuss your proposal contact planning@meaford.ca or 519-538-1060 extension 1127.

In review of all applications to amend the Official Plan, Staff and Council will consider:

  • The rationale or basis for the change
  • The direction provided by the Provincial Policy Statement
  • The goals and objectives of the Official Plan
  • The desirability and appropriateness of changing the Plan
  • The impacts the proposed change will have on the character of the area
  • Conformity to the County of Grey Official Plan

If you have questions about the official plan or applying for an amendment, please contact Planning Services. 

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