The promised new GO Rail Station on Mulock will only go ahead if the Town commits itself to high density development in the area according to Metrolinx - the agency responsible for delivering Regional Express Rail.
This means a new Secondary Plan for the Mulock area with work starting in 2017.
I support the new GO Rail station at Mulock for a thousand reasons (which I needn’t go into here) but, inevitably, it will mean major intensification along Mulock Drive. Already, the so called “centres and corridors” program on Davis and Yonge will bring another 32,000 people to the Town. The development of Mulock will add to this number.
Intensification in the old downtown not needed to meet targets
The Mayor is constantly banging on about “intensification”. He positively salivates at the prospect of more “intensification” in the old downtown. But, at the risk of stating the obvious, the Clock Tower is not needed for us to meet Provincially mandated intensification targets. (By the way, Glenway wasn’t either.)
A report that went before York Region’s Committee of the Whole today tells us
“The Town of Newmarket is evaluating transportation and land use policies to advance planning work for the Mulock GO station. It is anticipated that Secondary Plan studies will proceed for the Mulock GO station in 2017.”
“Expansion of the GO transit network and introduction of new GO stations has the ability to transform local communities by attracting transit-oriented, mixed use, high density development.”
The Chief Executive of Metrolinx, Bruce McQuaig, wrote to the Town’s CAO, Bob Shelton, on 4 August 2016 confirming that a new station at Mulock had been recommended as part of the GO Regional Express Rail 10 year program. (see page 133 in the York Region report.)
But McQuaig warns:
“Please note that the new station is still subject to further detailed analysis and conditions to address contextual issues.”
Metrolinx wants Newmarket to give a commitment by 30 November 2016 that it will implement
“transit supportive planning regimes around the station if such does not already exist.”
The next steps will involve reviewing
“the current land use policies in the Mulock station area and update as necessary any local policies, guidelines or by-laws to ensure transit supportive uses.”
Our Mayor, Tony Van Trappist, snoozes through this agenda item – one of the biggest issues facing the Town in a generation. It is left to the Deputy Sheriff, John Taylor, to ask some probing questions about why Aurora is getting the gold-plated all-day two-way 15 minute service when Newmarket collects the silver medal with a 30 minute service. It is, of course, better than what we have at the moment but it is still not good enough.
Taylor asks Stephen Collins, York Region’s acting Commissioner for Transportation, why the 15 minute service can’t be extended northwards to Mulock. Newmarket is a designated place to grow. Taylor says the 15 minute cut-off point at Aurora was decided before the decision was taken to have a new station at Mulock.
Collins, poker faced, says the decision has been taken and, so far as Metrolinx staff are concerned, it won’t be revisited.
We shall see.
A report is going to Newmarket’s Committee of the Whole on 18 October 2016.