From building permits to population projections: 8 key points in Barrie’s 2020 growth report

Citizens of Barrie, quite extraordinary, how does your city grow? Recently, the municipality released its 2020 growth report, which outlines several key indicators for new development within the city. We’ve run through the document and pulled out a few of the main points that you should know: • There were 193 development applications received last year, up from 162 in 2019. Of those, 44 per cent were for residential projects; commercial (22 per cent), mixed-use (17) and industrial (14) made up the bulk of the rest. • Ninety-three per cent of development applications were for areas located within the built boundary (existing neighbourhoods), while the rest were for greenfield (vacant land areas). • In total, 1,574 new units were approved, a drop from 2,060 in 2019. Of those, 912 are considered high-density (apartments or multi-unit dwellings) and 662 are townhouses. There were no low-density homes, such as single or semi-detached, OK’d. • Barrie added 288 new households between 2019 and 2020. The population of the city hit 151,043 last year; the number people living here is expected to climb to 167,600 in 2021, 171,900 in 2022, 210,000 in 2031, 253,000 in 2041 and 298,000 in 2051. An estimated 141,434 residents lived in the municipality in 2016. • The city received $22.3 million in development charges last year, down from $42.9 million in 2019. Based on 2020 subdivision approvals, these funds will at least partly pay for several kilometres […]

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‘Carrot Fest is a staple’: Celebration returns to downtown Bradford

Bradford West Gwillimbury’s annual celebration of all things local business is back. Carrot Fest will be returning to the streets of downtown Bradford on Aug. 20 and 21 after having to go virtual last year because of the COVID-19 pandemic.  On Aug. 20 from 4 to 10 p.m. and on Aug. 21 from 11 a.m. to 6:30 p.m., the Curtis Goddard Team Stage will feature live music with performances by Who Made Who (ACDC cover band), Desire (U2 cover band) and Mudmen. The stage is located on Barrie Street between Holland Street and John Street. The TD Busker Pitch, which will take place in the courthouse parking lot at from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Aug. 21, will feature the return of Jagger Sports’ BMX show, performances from Hercinia Arts and more. Pre-registration is encouraged, with walk-ins also permitted as space allows. When attending the stage or busker pitch, please remember to bring a chair or blanket as seating will not be provided. Music, entertainment and busker shows will also be live-streamed to the town’s Facebook page over the weekend. In years past the vendor market has been open to local and non-local businesses. About 200 vendors would come to Carrot Fest each year. “Usually it’s a year-long planning process, but we did have to postpone planning it because of COVID-19. When we started planning at the beginning of this year we didn’t know where things would be this summer,” said Bethany Kuboniwa, leisure events and marketing co-ordina […]

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Sudden death investigation underway in Orillia

Police are investigating the death of a Severn Township man. Shortly after 6 a.m. on Aug. 13, Orillia OPP received a call regarding an unresponsive person behind a business along Atherley Road. When officers arrived at the scene, emergency responders were performing life saving measures on the man, who was declared dead a short time later. The Orillia Crime Unit and Central Region Forensic Identification Services were called to continue the investigation in conjunction with the Office of the Chief Coroner and Ontario Forensic Pathology Service. The deceased has been identified as James McConnell, 46, of Severn Township. At this time the death is not considered suspicious and there is no threat to public safety, police said. Anyone who has information regarding the circumstances surrounding this death is encouraged to contact the Orillia OPP at or .

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Why won’t Toronto vaccinate residents around the clock starting next week? We ask the man with the plan

Last week Mayor John Tory raised the prospect of round-the-clock vaccine clinics when the next week. This week fire Chief Matthew Pegg, head of Toronto’s COVID-19 emergency response, . With , and COVID-19 , we asked Pegg to explain. What changed from last week to this week? Nothing has changed. The ability to expand clinic operations has always been a key component of the clinic operations. As soon as vaccine supply allows the city to open more clinics, and we begin vaccinating more residents, we will then be in a position to operationalize 24/7 clinics. Until we have all nine city-operated immunization clinics operating seven days a week, which is dependent upon the available supply of vaccine from the province, expanding hours of clinic operation is not planned. We can’t have clinic operational plans that exceed our vaccine supply. Are there logistical issues around 24-hour operations — security, or keeping non-city sites like Scarborough Town Centre open all night? Absolutely. Staffing our network of city-operated clinics is complex and challenging, to say the least. To operate our nine clinics from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. seven days a week requires about 1,400 staff. Transitioning to 24-hour operations would require us to on-board additional staff or redeploy existing staff from the current operational schedule into an expanded schedule. That would result in reduced clinic hours in one or more locations to expanded hours at another location. We may well have t […]

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How many adults aged 18 to 29 are vaccinated? It’s complicated, experts say

What percentage of Torontonians aged 18 to 29 are vaccinated against COVID-19? The figures vary significantly depending on the source. Provincial and city data on immunization for Torontonians in that age bracket are inconsistent, but with university classes scheduled to begin in early September, more clarity is needed around uptake among young adults, experts say. According to City of Toronto , the overwhelming majority — 95.8 per cent — of young adults aged 18 to 24 have received one dose of the vaccine, as of 8 a.m., Thursday. About 78 per cent are fully immunized. For slightly older groups between the ages of 25 and 29, first jabs have been administered to 88.6 per cent of the population, with 75.2 per cent having received two doses. But provincial paint a different picture. Public Health Ontario data shows that just 60.2 per cent of young people aged 18 to 29 in Toronto have received both jabs, and 71.8 per cent are partially immunized, as of Wednesday. Jean-Paul Soucy, a PhD student in epidemiology at the University of Toronto, said a “difference of that magnitude” could have “quite a large impact” on university and college campuses in the fall. Toronto “has been trumpeting that this is the most vaccinated age group,” he said. But in the absence of vaccine mandates for university campuses — outside of very limited circumstances like residences — the number of outbreaks will be “heavily dependent” on […]

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Police look for suspects in early morning alleged Wasaga Beach robbery: OPP

Huronia West OPP are seeking the public’s help to identify suspects involved in an alleged robbery in Wasaga Beach. Police said they were called to investigate a robbery in the early morning hours of June 6. The incident occurred in the area of Beach Drive.  According to police, at 12:15 a.m., a group of people (the alleged victims) were on the boardwalk west of Beach Drive in front of Park Area 2 when they were approached by another group (the alleged suspects). Police said that one man (whom police call “suspect one”) threatened the group, claiming to have a handgun.  A 22-year-old victim was forced to leave with “suspect one” to withdraw money from an ATM, police said. Another 22-year-old victim who remained with the group of suspects attempted to call passerby for help and was reportedly assaulted by another male suspect (who police call “suspect two”). “Suspect one” is described as a Black man in his twenties, six feet three inches tall, with a thin build and long shoulder-length dreadlocks. Police said he was wearing a stud earring, a black hat and dark clothing. This suspect told the victims he had just moved back to the Wasaga Beach area, police said. “Suspect two” is described as a Black man in his twenties, five feet 10 inches tall, with short black hair. He was wearing a white sleeveless top and a fanny pack across his chest.  Police said there are three more suspects involved in this […]

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