What is a Protected Major Transit Station Area?

    Protected Major Transit Station Areas (PMTSAs) are the areas surrounding and including a planned rapid transit station or stop, generally within a 500 to 800 metre radius (a 10-minute walk) of such a transit station. PMTSAs are planned to accommodate increased density with highly urban, mixed-use, transit-supportive forms of development.

    What are the Downtown, Transit Villages, and Rapid Transit Corridors?

    Downtown, Transit Village and Rapid Transit Corridor Place Types are identified to be high density, mixed use, transit-supportive neighbourhoods around rapid transit stations. 

    The Downtown is intended to be the City’s primary station for local bus, intercity rail and bus, as well as planned rapid transit and future high speed rail. The Downtown permits the broadest range of uses and the most intense forms of development. 

    Transit Villages are second only to the Downtown in terms of mix of uses and intensity of development that are permitted. Intended to support the rapid transit system, the Transit Villages require transit-oriented development forms and support the provision of a range of housing types, forms, tenure, and affordability in close proximity to rapid transit stations.

    Rapid Transit Corridors connect the Downtown and four Transit Villages by rapid transit routes. A wide range of uses and greater intensities of development are permitted around rapid transit stations to establish demand for rapid transit services along the corridors.

    These Place Types are nearly within a 500 to 800 metre radius of the rapid transit stations.

    Why do we identify PMTSAs?

    PMTSAs will support the future implementation of the rapid transit and accommodate increased residential and employment growth in close proximity to the rapid transit service. PMTSAs will also support general policies of the respective Place Types with a clearer direction on how development occurs in close proximity to rapid transit stations.

    Can I appeal the PMTSA Policies?

    No, as per Section of 17(36.1.4)) of the Planning Act, there is no appeal in respect of policies that identify a PMTSA or address any items listed in Section 16(15) of the Planning Act. 

    An exception to the appeal restriction is an appeal with respect of a maximum building height, but only where the maximum building height would not result in a building that would not satisfy the minimum density authorized for that parcel. 

    Can I Ammend the PMTSA Policies?

    Once a PMTSA is identified in accordance with Section 16(15) of the Planning Act, Council has discretion to determine when and if a request to amend the PMTSA policies or boundary may be permitted, in accordance with Sections 22(2.1.3) and 22(2.2) of the Planning Act. 

    What is the City Structire Plan and How Does It Relate to Higher Order Transit?

    The City Structure Plan informs policies of the London Plan by illustrating the desired future shape of London over the next 20 years within five frameworks. The frameworks include the growth framework, the mobility framework, the green framework, the economic framework, and the community framework, and work together to implement the Plan. 

    The growth framework is a framework for shaping London’s growth over the next 20 years. This framework identifies areas that are located in close proximity to planned higher order transit stations and stops, and allows for intense, mixed-use development within these areas with a high degree of pedestrian amenity to make these areas great places in which to live, work, shop, and play while supporting higher order transit ridership.

    The mobility framework focuses on mobility infrastructure, including sidewalks, transit lanes, and pathways, in order to accommodate mobility choices, such as transit usage, walking and cycling, and support efficient, safe and convenient movement of goods and services. This framework informs a higher order transit system to connect major destinations, including the Downtown and Transit Villages, with a high level of pedestrian amenity. 

    The economic framework is intended to promote the Downtown, Transit Villages, and Rapid Transit Corridors as economic engines for commerce, employment, and economic growth. Serviced by higher order transit, they are planned to offer opportunities for businesses with a wide array of amenities and services, and high-quality walking, cycling and transit environments. 

    What are Place Types?

    A Place Type refers to as a defined area that performs a specific role described by the City Structure. In the London Plan, the term “Place Type” is used instead of the 1989 Official Plan term “land use designation”. This is because the London Plan seeks to build the City as a mosaic of great places, which requires consideration of the use, intensity and form of development. 

    What is Inclusionary Zoning?

    Inclusionary Zoning is a planning tool available in the Planning Act that allows municipalities to require affordable housing units in residential development. Inclusionary Zoning is limited to a PMTSA or areas within a Community Planning Permit System (Section 16(5)). Inclusionary Zoning cannot be adopted until policies with respect to PMTSAs are adopted and approved. 

    What is Density?

    Density refers to the number of people occupying an area. Density can be measured in various ways, such as a number of residents and jobs combined per hectare, a number of residential units per hectare, and floor area ratio. Floor area ratio is the ratio of a building’s total floor area to the size of the lot on which the building is built. Identifying minimum densities helps the City to plan for growth in each Place Type in a way that can support higher order transit service. 

    What is a Recommended Minimum Density Target for Rapd Transit?

    The Ontario’s Transit-Supportive Guidelines provide municipalities with considerations when identifying PMTSAs and preparing policies and design guidelines to achieve transit-oriented development. The guidelines recommend a minimum of 100 to 160 residents and jobs per hectare should be generally accommodated in areas served by rapid transit. 

    The targets are not required to be achieved along every transit corridor or station segment, rather are suggested as guidelines. 

    Transit Service Type

    Recommended Minimum Density

    Basic Transit service

    (One bus every 20-30 minutes)

    22 units per ha / 

    50 residents and jobs combined

    Frequent Transit service

    (One bus every 10-15 minutes)

    37 units per ha / 

    80 residents and jobs combined

    Very frequent Transit service

    (One bus every 5 minutes with potential for LRT or BRT)

    45 units per ha / 

    100 residents and jobs combined

    Dedicated Rapid Transit


    72 units per ha / 

    160 residents and jobs combined


    90 units per ha / 

    200 residents and jobs combined