The elephant in the room in the Calgary Land Use Planning division is the fact that nothing is secret any more. Developers and real estate agents (including the city's own agents) have access to engineering reviews that identify land which will be sold as part of a development agreement. Obviously, having this kind of foresight can make one very rich. But, there's an unexpected downside to this gravy train: the developers can do the same thing and force the free market to be the primary planning control, rather than the City's left-leaning "Growth Philosophy", which is a project that has been ongoing for nearly 5 years now. Clearly this was a case of red tape being cut. However, without a coherent growth management strategy, the City gives its planning control away to the developer. Instead of the government enforcing development rules, the developers tell the government what they want, and the government will bend the rules accordingly. Of course, some of that rule bending has become public knowledge, and will likely continue until someone with a brain decides that electronic records management is a real issue, and assigns someone with talent and a solid background to direct such a project. Until then, it seems it's open season on confidential City of Calgary documents.
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