2013 Brownfields Plans
City of Greater Sudbury, Ontario
Reclaiming Our Urban Places — Brownfield Strategy and Community Improvement Plan
Project duration: 2008‒2011
Total project value: Internal project
The City of Greater Sudbury aims to stimulate brownfield redevelopment with its first brownfield strategy and community improvement plan, Reclaiming Our Urban Places. The strategy and plan tackle market barriers to brownfield redevelopment identified by the local development community, including tax arrears, absentee property owners, contamination and up-front remediation costs.
Reclaiming Our Urban Places has four parts: a marketing strategy to attract investment in brownfields; local awareness and capacity-building strategies; a municipal failed tax sale procedure to help resolve tax arrears and ownership issues associated with brownfield properties; and four incentive programs to help reduce up-front costs. The city built on extensive research and information obtained through stakeholder engagement that took into account the environmental, economic and social aspects of brownfields.
The project has sparked a growing interest in brownfields in Sudbury. A new interdepartmental brownfield team will better equip the city to address the issue and achieve environmental, economic and social benefits through more brownfield remediation and redevelopment projects.
- The city did not have an inventory of its brownfield sites and had to conduct a comprehensive land use survey.
- Property owners, developers and the public were not aware of the redevelopment potential for brownfield sites, particularly the economic benefits.
- The plan had to be flexible, long-lasting and city-wide to avoid creating an area-based "winners and losers" system.
- Conduct a comprehensive local land use survey to better understand local brownfield sites and tailor the strategy.
- Build internal and external awareness slowly and carefully to ensure support.
- Partner with other organizations to benefit from their knowledge and experience with the community.
- Allow time to share the story with other municipalities through trade articles and conference presentations.
- Generate interest by having a brownfield property developer announce that it will use the city's financial incentives.
Partners and collaboration
- City of Greater Sudbury Planning, Building Services, Finance, Real Estate, Economic Development and Environmental Services divisions
- Ontario Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing
- Ontario Ministry of the Environment
- Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC)
- Northwest Ontario Development Network
- The Bloom Centre for Sustainability (formerly the Ontario Centre for Environmental Technology Advancement)
- FCM's Green Municipal Fund