Cambridge MPP Brian Riddell says Ontario’s Greenbelt announcement ‘could have been a little better’

Cambridge MPP Brian Riddell says the way the Ontario government handled the Greenbelt announcement “could have been a little better.”

“Most of the Greenbelt issues have come out now. I’m a data and facts guys and what I see is, the premier has asked the integrity minister to look into it and I’ll wait until his findings are in,” the PC politician said in a summer MPP check-in interview with Craig Norris, host of CBC Kitchener-Waterloo’s The Morning Edition.

In response to criticism the province did not listen to opposition to open sections of the Greenbelt for development, Riddell said the province needs more housing as more people and international students are choosing to live in Ontario.

“Housing prices are out of control and way too high. And I really think these people need somewhere to live and right now we don’t have that.”

He said a wide range of different housing is needed — including rentals, and affordable and attainable housing — to meet everyone’s needs and he would like to see more infill development happen first, especially in areas like Cambridge.

Province working on getting more nurses

Health care has also been a top issue he’s been hearing from the community, Riddell said.

He said the province has been doing its part to get more nurses onboard and supporting hospitals like Cambridge Memorial Hospital.

“We gave them three million dollars a few weeks ago and this week, there will be another large amount going to them too,” he said. 

The province has also hired 6,800 nurses, he said, and have made it easier for foreign nurses to work in Ontario. He said the government is also paying nurses a bursary if they choose to work in an under-serviced community.

“We’re taking care of it and getting it done.”

Revitalizing Cambridge’s downtown core

In his first year as an MPP, Riddell said he has seen the investment and work his government has been doing to improve the province, right in the city of Cambridge.

Riddell was elected in the spring of 2022 as a member of the Progressive Conservatives. He says part of his summer has also been getting to know the job better.

“It’s a big learning curve. It’s like drinking from a fire hose, but you get it after the first couple of months and they help along. There’s always situations where you’re always still learning.”

Riddell said one of the things he would like to focus on during his term is revitalizing Cambridge’s downtown core.

“Bringing the LRT down is going to increase business along the routes, the stop points, and I think it’s also going to bring people into the core that want to live there.”

LISTEN | Cambridge MPP Brian Riddell on housing, health care and the Greenbelt:

The Morning Edition – K-W10:05Cambridge MPP Brian Riddell talks to The Morning Edition about housing, the Greenbelt and health care

Cambridge MPP Brian Riddell said housing and health care are the biggest issues he’s hearing from the community. As part of a summer MPP check-in interview with The Morning Edition, Riddell talked about the need for more housing and nurses. He also responds to criticism about his governments move to develop protected sections of the Greenbelt.

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