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Happy Trails to us

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A few weeks ago, there was an announcement about a trails link from St. Stephen to Saint John.  Why is that important to us?  First, it’s one more way to be outside and active, hiking and biking, and it’s good for your health.  From an economic development perspective, hiking and biking are major economic generators in Canada and the U.S.    Vacations are booked around trail systems, and there is an incredible network of promotional material bringing people to trail systems like the U.S. East Coast Greenway and the Trans Canada.  With that comes demand for hotels, food, local crafts, other recreational needs such as campsites.  So far, St. Stephen and Charlotte County are outside that network, and there is a tremendous opportunity to become the middle of it all.  We can be the final link in a trail system from Florida to Calais, and St. Johns to Vancouver Island.  Thousands of new tourists can pass through here – wanting to experience the local attractions.

New in Town

Harper’s Exotic Animals and Pet Supply store will be opening soon.  They are local folks who have a passion for exotic animals and will be offering pet food, toys, and other supplies for all pet types.

The local branch of Scotiabank had their official opening Jan. 15th of the complete renovation to the building – focusing on personal customer service.  This layout is the only one of its type in New Brunswick – a great vote of confidence in our local staff and management.

St. Stephen’s Municipal Plan and Zoning By-law Review

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St. Stephen’s Municipal Plan (2011) is the Town’s overarching policy document, which helps to guide future land use, physical development, growth and change within the Town. Policies within the Municipal Plan have been designed to preserve and enhance the quality of life in St. Stephen, provide clarity for future development and provide a better understanding of land use control within the Town.

In partnership with Dillion Consulting Ltd., the Town of St. Stephen is beginning the process of reviewing and updating its Municipal Plan with the intent to provide better policy direction and guidance for the Town over the next ten (10) years. The Municipal Plan will be updated through a community planning process, which will allow Town Staff to capture community priorities and implement new policy. Updating and enhancing the current Municipal Plan will also bring the Town’s policies in conformity with up-coming revisions to provincial legislation – the Community Planning Act – within the next year.

The following sections will explain and outline the Municipal Plan and Zoning By-law Review process, important dates and next steps to come!

What is a Municipal Plan?

  • A Municipal Plan provides policy (a strategy of rules) to manage growth and development within a municipality.
  • A Municipal Plan is a legal document that has legal authority under the Community Planning Act and is adopted as a bylaw of the municipality.
  • A Municipal Plan addresses a range of issues – Housing, Businesses, Transportation, Infrastructure, and the environment – to ensure future planning and development is managed in a way that balances social, economic, and environmental interests of a community
  • All Town By-laws and strategic plans must conform to the Municipal Plan.

How does the Municipal Plan affect me?

  • AS A RESIDENT – it outlines the Town’s strategy to enhance the quality of life for all residents.
  • AS A PROPERTY OWNER – it establishes how you can modify, use, or redevelop your home or building.
  • AS A DEVELOPER – it provides policy direction and guidance for the evaluation of planning applications.
  • AS A BUSINESS OWNER – it provides direction as to where and how the Town will grow.
  • AS A MEMBER OF TOWN COUNCIL – it highlights your commitment to the future growth of the community.

Why is the Town reviewing the Municipal Plan and Zoning By-law?

  • The Town’s current Municipal Plan was adopted by Town Council in 2011 and is to be reviewed every 5 years, in accordance to the Community Planning Act.
  • The Municipal Plan needs to be brought into conformity with anticipated amended provincial legislation – Community Planning Act.
  • Over the past 5 years, the Town of St. Stephen has exhibited change. Reviewing the Municipal Plan and Zoning By-law will help enhance and reframe opportunities to improve and respond to new issues and trends, such as incorporating new policies that address sustainable development and climate change.

What has been the process to date?

  • The Town of St. Stephen and Dillon Consulting Ltd. kicked-off the review process for the Municipal plan in the summer of 2017.
  • Background reports on housing, heritage, demographics, and other topics of interest have been produced and made available to better equip residents with where the Town stands today. These background reports can be found at the bottom of the page.
  • Informal meeting sessions and an online survey has been produced to gather feedback from the public on policy directions, Town goals and the vision for St. Stephen.

What are some highlights and important dates I should know?

  • The Municipal Plan is intended to be updated and not an entirely new document
  • All members of the community will have an opportunity to provide input and shape the planning documents as we move through the Plan Review process.
  • Informal Pop-up sessions will be held to gather feedback from residents and community members on the Town’s goals, its vision, and new policies. Informal pop-up sessions will be held on:
    • Pop-Up Engagement Session #1
      • When: Friday, September 1, 2017 – (9:00am – 2:00pm)
      • Where: St. Stephen Farmers’ Market. 2 Budd Avenue, St. Stephen.
    • If you can’t attend one of the informal pop-up sessions and you want to be involved, please fill out our online survey:

Municipal Plan and Zoning By-law Review process – Next steps!

  • There will be a series of public open houses and public meetings scheduled through the process leading up to the adoption of the Town’s updated Municipal Plan. Watch for details on these upcoming public meetings.
  • Following the completion of the consultation period, Staff will review, summarize and respond to comments in the form of a summary report, make revisions to the draft Municipal Plan where appropriate in order to bring a Final Draft to Town Council for consideration.

Public input is very important to this project and we welcome you to share your thoughts with us by contacting:


Colin Simic


Dillon Consulting Limited
274 Sydney Street Suite 200
Saint John, New Brunswick, E2L 0A8
Tel – 506.633.5000 ext. 5481
Fax – 506.633.5110

Stephen Stone

Dillon Consulting Limited

274 Sydney Street Suite 200
Saint John, New Brunswick, E2L 0A8
Tel – 506.633.5000 ext. 5405
Fax – 506.633.5110

Related Documents

Town of St. Stephen – Municipal Plan (2011)

Town of St. Stephen – Zoning By-law (2011)

Downtown Streetscape Study

Find town council agendas & minutes, and all the Town’s Bylaws, budgets, tenders, etc. under Documents below.

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