Carleton Place makes MacLean’s best communities list

CARLETON PLACE – Carleton Place was just put on the MacLean’s Magazine map after being named as one in the Top 52 of Canadian communities.

Maclean’s Magazine released its 2019 list of the best communities in Canada and Carleton Place came in at #52. Data was gathered on 415 towns and cities across the country which were compared based on the following categories: Wealth and economy; affordability; population growth; taxes; commute; crime; weather; access to health care; andamenities and culture.

Communities in Ontario and British Columbia dominated the list primarily due to strong economies, good weather (compared to the rest of the country), low health care wait times and crime rate.

“We have told you time and time again that Carleton Place is a great place to live and now the rest of the country knows it too,” Carleton Place Mayor Doug Black said.

The full ranking can be viewed on the Macleans website.

First eight months

At last night’s (Aug. 13) council meeting, the role of chair of the Committee of the Whole was passed from Coun. Theresa Fritz to Coun. Toby Randell. Council members assume the role for a period of eight months to ensure each member has an opportunity to sit as chair.

Mayor Black used the opportunity to thank Coun. Fritz for her outstanding leadership and to highlight some of the things council and staff have accomplished in the first eight months of the council term including:

  • Strategic Plan – Council approved its 2019 – 2023 Corporate Strategic Plan entitled “Balancing Growth” which articulates Council’s priorities for its term. Strategic goals include comprehensive communication, managed growth, corporate health and community and economic development.
  • Active Living Centre – A new Centre for Seniors will open this fall in the Coleman Street Train Station building which is a collaborative project with the Mills Community Support Corporation. The Centre will offer a variety of educational, social and recreational programming.
  • Central Bridge – Many advancements have been made in preparation for the monumental reconstruction of the Central Bridge in downtown Carleton Place. After thorough research and public consultation, the project is set to commence in 2020 with work on the Gillies Bridge which needs to occur in advance of the Central Bridge reconstruction.
  • A stakeholder group has been established to begin planning for capital improvements to Bridge Street in downtown Carleton Place which will take place in conjunction with the works on Central Bridge. The group’s work will be presented to Council this fall with an open house scheduled to receive public feedback on the plans.
  • The Town successfully presented its case at a Local Planning Appeal Tribunal defending its position concerning a decision made at Council regarding a development application for 50 Allan Street. The appeal by Battan Developments was dismissed by the Tribunal.
  • Council passed an Interim Control By-law which restricts the development of apartments, stacked townhouses, triplex or quadplex dwellings exceeding 28 feet in height in a specific area of Town. The Town is now required to undertake a comprehensive study for the affected lands to recommend a final outcome related to this issue.
  • The Town celebrated its 200th anniversary of settlement this year which culminated with  ‘Come Home to Carleton Place Week’ which was an overwhelming success. Celebrations included a trivia night, a day of music in Riverside Park, the Great Carleton Place Amazing Race, 2 parades, a street dance and a community picnic. The Mayor thanked the organizing Committee for their countless hours of work which went towards creating a celebration residents will remember for a lifetime.
  • This fall will see the Grand Opening of Carleton Junction, a new multi-use park in downtown Carleton Place. The space includes a play structure, a pavilion which will have washrooms and a performance stage, a skateboard park, a pump track and trails.
  • The Town has partnered with Lanark County Transportation to develop a pilot program which would allow residents to access a bus service one day a week with drop offs and pick ups at a number of local venues.
  • The Town received a substantial capital grant from the Ontario government which will help to create new licensed child care spaces. As a result of this grant, the Francis Street Child Care Centre will undergo a significant expansion.
  • The Carleton Place Library won the Grand Prize in the 2018 TD Summer Reading Club Awards which is a national award that recognizes and rewards the most innovative and effective TD Summer Reading Clubs in local libraries across Canada.