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Thread: Agricultural Preservation - amidst urban sprawl

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    Agricultural Preservation - amidst urban sprawl

    The American Farmland Trust has many a document on this topic, however, I am wondering if anyone is aware of any 'tools' that have been used, either with success or failure, in possibly both preserving and encouraging farmland protection within urban shadow regions.

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    Cyburbian nerudite's avatar
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    The City of Davis, CA had some good right to farm restrictions in the Muncipal Code, which implements the General Plan chapter on Agriculture.

    General Plan Ag Policies

    Muncipal Code Chapter on Right to Farm, etc.

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    Cyburbian donk's avatar
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    Since you are from the TO area look at the Town of caledon's subdivison by-law/regs. They used to limit the number of lots that could be taken off a farm and limit the location based on soil types on farm productivity.

    other areas in Southern Ontario to look at would be around St Catherines, around London. Specifically look at their holding zone provisions.

    the other place to look for info is at Guelph's rural planning program
    Too lazy to beat myself up for being to lazy to beat myself up for being too lazy to... well you get the point....

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    Cyburbian pandersen's avatar
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    Ag Land Preservation

    Most rural municipalities in Southern Ontarion have some form of policy that dealswith this issue.

    If I recall correctly Puslinch Township (Ontario) used to limit rural non-farm subdivisions to 1 per original township lot (normally 80 or 100 acres).

    A few years ago, I went on a week long bus tour with the Farmland Preservation Trust and toured Pennslvania, New Jersey and Maryland. Each of these states was using some form of "Transfer of Development Rights" or TDR to attempt to preserve remaing high quality farmland.

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    Cyburbian ecofem's avatar
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    The Land Trust Alliance should have a lot of information on how land trusts are used in farmland preservation.

    Other private-market methods of preservation/conservation, which have been very effective are conservation easements which allows the farmer/rancher/grower to continue to work their land, while gaining some of the development (potential) value out of the land. I haven't done much farmland preservation work here in Florida (no state-side funding ...yet).

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    Tools for Ag Land Preservation

    Quote Originally posted by rurban
    The American Farmland Trust has many a document on this topic, however, I am wondering if anyone is aware of any 'tools' that have been used, either with success or failure, in possibly both preserving and encouraging farmland protection within urban shadow regions.
    Peninsula Township, MI (planner@peninsulatownship.com) is one of the first governments in the country to tax itself to Purchase Development Rights from prime agriculture land. The program is so successful that we increased the tax and extended the taxing period to expand the program. We also use rural clustering, mandatory openspace and are encouraging transfer of Development Rights which just became legal in Michigan.

  7. #7
    Cyburbian
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    hi

    I am in the Region of Waterloo. Our Official Plan is very strict about severances in the Rural areas. For the most part we do not allow them at all. Farms must be a minimum size of 40 hectares, and to create a new non farm lot, you can only do it as an infill situation when you have 4 or more non farm lots in a row, you can sever inbetween.

    I can email the section from our OP if you want.
    "your lack of planning does not constitute an emergency on my part!"

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    Cyburbian SGB's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by gfiebing
    Peninsula Township, MI is one of the first governments in the country to tax itself to Purchase Development Rights from prime agriculture land
    How are the revenues raised for this program? From property or sales tax?
    All these years the people said he’s actin’ like a kid.
    He did not know he could not fly, so he did.
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    Cyburbian Budgie's avatar
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    There are several approaches that use a mix of tools, often that work in conjunction with eachother. I don't want to spill what I know about the topic, because I don't have the time for it. But I would suggest reading the following.

    Saved by Development - Rick Pruetz (foremost expert in TDR's)
    Holding Our Ground - Tom Daniels and Deborah Bowers (Tom's work is excellent)
    When City and Country Collide - Tom again.
    Protecting Farmland, What Works? - The American Farmland Trust (if you become a member of the AFT, you get a copy of this excellent book).

    One of the best examples (and believe me there are plenty out there) is Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, where Tom Daniels was instrumental in preserving farmland and curbing sprawl. There are numerous articles on the Lancaster County model.

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