Who are the GTA developers set to benefit from Ford government’s Greenbelt land swap?


Several well-established developers are amongst the homeowners of the 15 parcels of land the Ford authorities is proposing to open up for housing in the protected Greenbelt in the Greater Toronto Area, a CBC Toronto evaluation of dozens of land registry and company data has discovered.

The Ontario authorities introduced a 30-day session final week on eradicating roughly 2,995 hectares throughout 10 municipalities from the Greenbelt, which was created in 2005 to completely shield agricultural and environmentally delicate lands in the Greater Golden Horseshoe space from improvement.

Corporations run by the DeGasperis household, longtime builders based mostly in Vaughan, Ont. north of Toronto, who based Tacc Developments and Tacc Construction, personal 20 properties in three places inside the Greenbelt the authorities is proposing to open up.

The record of landowners additionally features a firm run by Michael Rice, president and CEO of Rice Group, and one run by Shakir Rehmatullah, president of Flato Developments.

The province mentioned final Friday the transfer will facilitate the constructing of at the very least 50,000 houses and that the plan is to add extra land elsewhere to the Greenbelt than is being taken out. The lands thought of for elimination had been chosen as a result of they’ve the potential for houses to be in-built the close to future and since they are adjoining to current city areas, the authorities of Premier Doug Ford mentioned. 

Here’s what CBC News discovered about a few of the largest landowners who stand to benefit from the so-called Greenbelt land swap.


The largest parcel of land the province is proposing to open for improvement entails Duffins Rouge Agricultural Preserve, alongside Pickering’s jap city line, protecting land from Highway 407 in the north, practically all the manner to Finch Avenue in the south. 

Four corporations managed by members of the DeGasperis household personal 16 of about 60 properties inside it. The 16 heaps had been purchased for greater than $9 million and all however considered one of the properties had been bought earlier than the Greenbelt was created in 2005.

Four corporations managed by members of the DeGasperis household, long-time builders based mostly in Vaughan, personal 16 of about 60 properties inside this parcel of land the Ontario authorities desires to take away from the Greenbelt in Pickering, Ont. (Ontario authorities)

In whole, the DeGasperis-controlled properties cowl 506 hectares of this a part of the Greenbelt. Other landowners inside the Pickering parcel embrace farming corporations, a golf membership and the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority.


An organization run by the DeGasperis household additionally owns considered one of two tracts of land that intersect with the part of Greenbelt land probably being taken out in Vaughan north of Teston Road and east of Pine Valley Drive.

Tacc Developments (Block 41) Inc. bought one for $50 million in May 2021. The 43-hectare property features a combination of Greenbelt and non-Greenbelt land, the latter of which makes up the bigger parts.

Corporate data record Silvio DeGasperis, Michael DeGasperis and Carlo DeGasperis as officers of Tacc Developments (Block 41) Inc.

Tacc Developments is presently constructing a subdivision of low- and mid-rise housing together with different developers in the space on Block 41, considered one of Vaughan’s final remaining greenfield areas situated on 428 hectares of land bounded by Kirby Road to the north, Weston Road to the east, Teston Road to the south, and Pine Valley Drive to the west.

Richmond Hill

Another firm linked to the DeGasperis household, Leslie Elgin Developments Inc., owns three parcels of land that include Greenbelt land being thought of for elimination in Richmond Hill. 

Leslie Elgin Developments bought two of the heaps collectively for $37 million in August 2010, the data present. CBC Toronto was unable to get hold of the gross sales historical past for the third, though the firm did obtain a $200-million mortgage for the property in 2017.

King Township

Green Lane Bathurst GP Inc. is the sole proprietor of the Greenbelt land proposed for elimination from King Township. The land suits inside two of the firm’s different properties, which collectively take up 276 hectares. 

The firm, which lists Michael Rice as its president, bought 5 parcels of land in whole in a bunch sale two months in the past on Sept. 15 for $80 million.

The Greenbelt was created in 2005 to completely shield agricultural and environmentally delicate lands in the Greater Golden Horseshoe space from improvement. (Submitted by the Greenbelt Foundation)

Rice can be CEO of the Markham-based Rice Group, a developer of retail, industrial and infrastructure tasks.

While eradicating this land from the Greenbelt would open it up for housing improvement, the Township of King’s council earlier this week handed a decision supporting it as the location of a brand new Southlake Regional Health Centre web site, and requested the province to quick monitor its improvement.

The decision said the landowner was prepared to present the land for the hospital web site for a “nominal charge.”


The province is proposing to take away two elements of the Greenbelt in Stouffville. They intersect with land owned by three corporations. 

Toronto-based Torca II Inc., whose president is Marcelo Perez-Hassaf, bought greater than 29 hectares at 12045 McCowan Road for $25 million in September of 2020.

A numbered firm that lists the similar administrators as Torca II Inc. bought 11861 McCowan Road in April 2020 for $12.5 million.

Documents accessed by means of the York Region council hyperlink Torca to Orca Equity Ltd., an organization concerned in the planning, improvement and financing of residential, industrial and industrial tasks all through Ontario, in accordance to its web site.

WATCH | What Ford has mentioned about the Greenbelt:

Here’s what Doug Ford has mentioned over the years about creating Ontario’s Greenbelt

From pledging to by no means construct on it in 2018 to saying it is a part of the resolution to Ontario’s housing disaster in 2022, this is how the premier’s place on the controversial situation has modified.

Another numbered firm — 2502536 Ontario Limited — owns the third piece of land. Corporate paperwork record its president as Weixiang Wang.

Wang can be the chair of Wyview Group, a Markham-based developer that works on residential and industrial tasks.


Six elements of the Greenbelt in Markham are on the chopping block.

Highway 48

Wang can be president of three numbered corporations that personal land at three addresses on Highway 48 with Greenbelt land the province is proposing to open for improvement.

In 2021, the three corporations acquired the properties for a complete of greater than $80 million.

nineteenth Avenue

Flato Upper Markham Village Inc. owns a triangular parcel of land that may very well be eliminated from the Greenbelt at the northeast nook of nineteenth Avenue and McCowan Road. Shakir Rehmatullah, who based Flato Developments Inc. in 2005, is the firm’s president.

Flato Upper Markham Village purchased the land on the border between Markham and Stouffville in 2017 for $15 million. The developer is constructing a subdivision in the space that can embrace a mixture of single-family houses and an condo constructing, in accordance to Markham metropolis council paperwork.

Kennedy Road

Minotaur Holdings owns a parcel of land at 10379 Kennedy Road that features a part of the Greenbelt. 

The firm bought it in 2003 for $7.5 million. Its officers embrace Clayton and Corey Leibel, who are additionally related to Forest Bay Homes Ltd.


Nash Road Developments Inc. is the sole proprietor of the land slated for elimination from the Greenbelt in Clarington. Its president is Peter Tanenbaum.

The firm has owned 34 hectares at the northeast nook of Nash Road and Hancock Road in Courtice since 2003 when it bought it for $2.75 million.

The space is the web site of a number of new proposed subdivisions made up of single household, indifferent houses and medium density residential buildings.


A numbered firm based mostly in Richmond Hill owns the land the province is proposing to take away from the Greenbelt in Ajax — a 42-hectare farm that was designated as having cultural heritage worth final 12 months. 

The firm bought the Nicholas Austin property at 775 Kingston Rd. East in June 2018 for $15.8 million. Most of the property is presently a part of the Greenbelt.

The firm’s major officer is Yuchen Lu, whose handle is listed in Fuyang, China.

Here is the full Ontario authorities proposal to lower Greenbelt land and open it for improvement:

If you might have any details about this story, or some other situation you want CBC Toronto to examine, contact us at torontotips@cbc.ca


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