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News, Ontario

Burlington releases details of legal contest of airport site expansion

Posted on June 29, 2017

Yesterday, Burlington City Council approved the public release of information related to litigation between the City of Burlington and the Burlington Executive Airport, concerning fill deposited at the airpark and the site expansion.

The city notes that between 2008 and 2014, large amounts of fill were brought to the airpark site, which raised objections among residents over concerns about the site’s expansion. The airport’s officials had stated that the fill would be used to raise and level a large segment of land for the site’s expansion.

In primary contention is management of the site’s fill. The expansion of airports is subject to federal regulation under Transport Canada and not municipal or other jurisdictions. However, in 2014, Burlington introduced new legislation regarding site alteration and fill, which the Ontario Superior Court found applied to the site, though the fill work had been done prior to enacting of the bylaw.

New information released regarding the legal contest has shown that the Court of Appeal ruled in favour of the airpark, finding that the new bylaw was neither retroactive or retrospective. That is, the bylaw was not introduced to govern activity previously conducted nor the outcomes of the previous site activity.

Continued site expansion at the airpark will be subject to the 2014 bylaw. Further to that, sewage works installed onsite that were not subject to Environmental Compliance Approval are still being contested by stakeholders, including the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change, Conservation Halton, and the City of Burlington.

More information can be found on the city’s website.

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