North Gwillimbury Forest

UPDATE: Save the North Gwillimbury Forest

Courtesy of Tom Cooper:

Fellow islanders, this is scary news:

It appears that the Lake Simcoe Conservation authority has sold its soul and approved a >1,000 unit housing development in the North Gwillimbury Forest Wetland in Island Grove. (Who got paid off here???)

There is a meeting this Friday March 23rd at 9:00 am at the LSRCA office in Newmarket, so with such short notice I am taking unprecedented step of emailing SICA membership regarding this event - if anyone has time to go and stand up for the Lake before it's too late. 

(This is also available online, along with more detailed background info, at the Save North Gwillimbury Forest website below):

To friends of Lake Simcoe:

Please read the letter below outlining the outrageous and unlawful recommendation that the Lake Simcoe Conservation Authority Staff has made regarding the environmental protection or lack thereof  for Lake Simcoe.

The 1,073 unit residential subdivision  proposed for the Paradise Beach-Island Grove Provincially Significant Wetland would be - if given the final approval by the LSRCA Board - in The North Gwillimbury Forest at the south end of Lake Simcoe.

Read on to find out how foolish and short-sighted this direction, if taken, would be.

See **LSRCA Staff provide..." below.


FYI: The beneficial filtering functions afforded by wetlands are critical to the health of all bodies of water and, in this case, Lake Simcoe. 

The destruction of the Paradise-Beach Grove PSW (Provincially Significant Wetland) and replacing it with an ~1,100 unit residential development are two devastating & irreversible  blows to an already ailing lake. 

Please speak up to protect the 6th "Great Lake" before it's too late.


View this message online


March 19, 2018

LSRCA Staff recommend that the DG Group be allowed to destroy the Paradise Beach-Island Grove Provincially Significant Wetland

Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority (LSRCA) staff are recommending that the DG Group be allowed to build a 1,073 unit residential development on the Paradise Beach-Island Grove Provincially Significant Wetland (PSW) in the North Gwillimbury Forest.  The LSRCA Board will vote on this recommendation on Friday, March 23rd.

The Staff recommendation is unlawful. It is contrary to the Provincial Policy Statement, the Conservation Authorities Act and the LSRCA's current Watershed Development Guidelineswhich all prohibit development (except infrastructure) on provincially significant wetlands.

**LSRCA Staff provide a number of misleading and inaccurate justifications for their recommendation to allow the DG Group to destroy the PSW:

  1. On the basis of an October 18, 2004 letter from the Ministry of Natural Resources to Metrus Developments (now the DG Group), the LSRCA Staff assert "that the Province has no interest in the protection of the wetland." However, the staff fail to note that the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry rescinded its 2004 letter on March 11, 2015
  2. LSRCA staff assert that the LSRCA must approve the destruction of the PSW because the Government of Ontario has refused to allow the DG Group to build a subdivision on prime farmlands in the Greenbelt's Protected Countryside on the south side of Deer Park Road.
  3. LSRCA Staff claim that destruction of the PSW is acceptable because the DG Group has agreed to transfer those prime farmlands to the Town or the Region so that our tax dollars can be used to turn good farmlands into fake wetlands. This would allegedly offset the ecological loss caused by allowing the DG Group to destroy the real Paradise Beach-Island Grove PSW.
  4. The LSRCA Staff assert that the DG Group's wetland destruction application must be approved to comply with the LSRCA's unlawful and now defunct Subdivisions-in-Wetlands Policy. This claim makes no sense for three reasons: First, this policy was replaced by the LSRCA's new Watershed Development Guidelines, which prohibit subdivisions in wetlands, in April 2015; second, the LSRCA's Undertaking with the developer, which mentioned the defunct policy, expired on Dec. 31, 2016 and was not renewed; third, the DG Group submitted a new application to destroy the Paradise Beach-Island Grove PSW in place of the original application on May 2, 2017. 

What you can do

  1. Please ask your LSRCA Board Member to reject the DG Group's request to destroy the Paradise Beach-Island Grove PSW. (See names and email addresses below)
  2. Please ask the LSRCA for permission to make a deputation in support of saving the PSW at their Friday, March 23rd board meeting. (email
  3. Please attend the Friday, March 23rd LSRCA board meeting at 9 a.m. to show your support for saving the PSW. The meeting will be held at the LSRCA offices at 120 Bayview Parkway in Newmarket.
  4. Please pass this message on to your friends.

LSRCA Board members

Click here to email all the board members.

Please pass this message on to your friends.

Thank you,

Jack Gibbons
Chair, North Gwillimbury Forest Alliance

416-260-2080 ext. 2

Tell your friends and neighbours about how they can help! Forward this message.


The North Gwillimbury Forest Alliance is alerting Georgina residents and visitors to the potential impacts of new development on the area's forests and waters. If you do not wish to receive future messages, click here.



July 20, 2017 - The public has a right to know about DG Groups wetland destruction application

July 17, 2017 - New evidence on the importance of protecting our wetlands

Jan 17, 2017 - We're taking our fight to teh Ontario Municipal Board

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