Midland Bay Landing – Update From MBLDC

Friends, please read this carefully. Does this clarification of the phase one plans for MBL make you any more comfortable with the current plans? It is important to keep an open mind and remember that public consultation will happen post-sale during the site planning process although the “pause” position I have been advocating for on much of our resident’s behalf sees public input before the sale of the lands – and then again during the mandatory public meetings (as required by the Planning Act) post-sale as we work through a site plan approval process.


Media Release From Midland Bay Landing Development Corporation

What’s Happening at Midland Bay Landing Redevelopment?

Midland, Ontario (Tuesday, September 20, 2022) Midland Bay Landing Development Corporation (MBLDC) is aware there is great interest in this important waterfront development project, and we wanted to ensure the Facts were presented on some of the questions being asked.

As you may know, we are currently in a 120-day Exclusivity Period with the local developer, Georgian Communities. Following successful completion of this Period, Council will review the recommendation of the Midland Bay Landing Board on the sale of Phase 1.

Will the public always have access to the waterfront?

• Yes. Public access to the entire waterfront along the water’s edge is a signature public feature of MBL. This will provide for activities like walking, viewing, picnics, and fishing, together with a separate, parallel multi-use trail for cycling or running like the Promenade Demonstration build by MBLDC. Buildings will be set back 100 feet from the water’s edge to allow the public panoramic views of Georgian Bay.

Will I still be able to fish?

• Yes. Even more public fishing than today will be available along the whole promenade and any parks along the water’s edge.

How much public space will there be?

• Ten Acres of new publicly accessible space (25% of the site area) The ten acres of new promenade, parks, and public plazas will be built by the Developer at no cost to the Town. All public areas will be on property owned by the Town.

What will happen to Midland Bay Landing Park?

• The park will stay in its current location after feedback from MBLDC and the Town on the Developer’s initial concept drawings.

Can residents provide input on the project?

• Yes. Previous public consultations identified the importance of public access to the water, and this has been preserved. More public feedback on the proposed design elements will occur after the sale of the Phase 1 lands. MBLDC, the Town, and the Developer are committed to holding public open houses and meetings to listen to the public and obtain feedback as the MBL design evolves.

Who is the Developer?

• Georgian Communities headquartered in Barrie Ontario. Council accepted the recommendation by the Board and voted to engage this developer. A contract was signed which started a 120-day Exclusivity Period and when approved by Council, sale of the Phase 1 land to the Developer.

How does Midland Bay Landing benefit the Town?

• MBL will transform an unused, contaminated site on the waterfront into a vibrant mixed-use community that will benefit the Town and the region with its publicly accessible waterfront, open spaces, new parks, and a public square for the enjoyment of residents and visitors alike. Not only will this benefit our current businesses and residents, but it is expected to attract new businesses and residents to Midland.

What about the Town’s initial cost to purchase the property?

• The Town will get its initial investment back and more. The Town purchased the land in 2012 and will more than recover the investment on the sale of the Phase 1 land, plus additional revenue when the Phase 2 lands are sold. The total return on the Town’s investment will be multiple times greater than its initial cost. When Phase 1 is sold, the Town will be debt free on the original purchase which will eliminate future interest costs to the Town.

What is being built first?

• Phase 1 at the east side of the site; approximately 36% of the entire site. This includes expansion of the promenade, park space and low-rise townhomes. Phase 2 will have a new, large park space and a public plaza connecting to the waterfront promenade along with residential and commercial space.

Will my views be obstructed?

• There are Official Plan restrictions on building height at MBL. The Developer and the Town will work together to preserve or enhance site lines. In Phase 1, the townhomes currently proposed are 3 stories in height.

I hear only luxury condos will be built.

• The developer is proposing a mixture of residential types and sizes through the phases with the initial phase being townhomes. The market will determine the pricing of these units. Revenue received by the Town from the sale of MBL property and new tax revenue will be available to support more affordable housing in the Town.

How does this affect our property taxes in Midland?

• New annual tax revenue will be created for the Town with new residents moving into homes in Phase 1 of MBL. When MBL redevelopment is complete, the Town will receive millions more of new tax revenue annually to invest into new programs and services or pay for improvements throughout the Town.

Why don’t we make Midland Bay Landing into a large Park?

• The land was previously an industrial site with contaminated soil. If the 40-acre MBL property was to be completely converted to a park, the entire shoreline would need to be restored and the entire site would need 1.0m of clean soil to be placed on top of the existing land to act as a “fill cap” to make it environmentally safe. The cost to the Town to do this would be $20 to 30 million. In addition to this capital cost, there will be annual operating costs to maintain the park which would be additional pressure on the budget along with any debt costs resulting in increased taxes.

7 Comments

  1. Concerning the increase of tax revenue, I find the comment of how it will help with tax revenue which will help the taxpayers in Midland. We have had a lot of building going on for quite a few years, have not seen any decrease’s In our taxes, from the financial statements of The town of Midland we are in worst shape than we have ever been in. I think they are blowing smoke, if you know what I mean.

    • I’d expect it to be well underway in 1.5yrs and done within 3-5 but that is only a semi-educated guess and depends on issues with site planning, pre-sales, the economy, inflation etc…

  2. All I see when I look at that pic is buildings. Why are the green spaces on the street side rather than the water side. This is exactly what I do NOT want to look at. I would rather pay a reasonable tax increase for a much larger green space park with a few buildings for the residents and visitors. It’s not like Little Lake park is a gem for water use. There are other areas that houses can be built. Is this going to turn into the same contentious problem that is going on at Bayport because there is no compromise. They are building high density townhouses and two 12 story condos. Is that not enough buildings on the waterfront for the elite to block the view and reduce public use. It will sit now as an eyesore for who knows how long. I think once council members are voted in it’s always the same behaviour and no one then really listens to the residents.

  3. “How does this affect our property taxes in Midland?”

    On this item the MBLDC does NOT address the question. There is no indication that the localized tax base increase, as a result of the residential development, will at all contribute to any reduction of property taxes – just “…new programs and services or pay for improvements throughout the Town.…”
    So suffice it to say there will be no effect on our taxes. Then why raise the prospect?

    As to residences in Phase 1 before public spaces and recreational areas: From a revenue stream perspective on behalf of a purchasing developer it does makes some sense. However, I suspect marketing the sale of the residential units will ge a real challenge. What physical site and surrounding area amenities can be offered as part of the deal to prospective purchasers? A five to ten year horizon on potential amenities? Don’t think so…Why would I want to buy there?

    A better solution i believe would be to have a less aggressive push on residential in Phase 1 in COMBINATION WITH more aggressive resident and public amenities- working harmoniously to attract buyers by creating a reason to buy and be there and appeasing the need for public spaces in our town that can be a premier year round recreational destination … just a thought. All a step toward Midland becoming… Midland-on-the-Bay

  4. My thoughts: waterfront townhome condos… on Georgian Bay… if that isn’t targeting affluent high end investors I don’t know what else would. This is a desperate attempt in the final days before an election to distract people from the reality. I’ll entertain all this during the public consultations if we can pause this sale that so many candidates seem hell bent on doing despite the public outcry for the past four years. Any candidate who promises to “listen to the residents” but signals that they will vote to sell without a few months to review this decade old plan with you is taking you for a fool. I can work with anyone but it’s important that they know where I stand on this HUGE topic that will come to council early in the new term.

  5. Suddenly out of the blue…just before the election…details released!!! Oh what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive!!!

Leave a Reply