Idlewood Subdivision - Designed by Limnoterra Limited in 1975



Dr. Jon Planck was an integral member of the study team in formulating planning recommendations for the above noted planning area in the City of Kitchener. The environmental planning investigations for this community commenced in the mid-seventies, and Dr. Planck continues to be involved in tours and observations to ensure the system succeeds as predicted in the original design.


The original Grand River South investigations were designed to:


  • Through inventory of existing environmental features - including the Idlewood Creek system, adjacent wooded and wetland areas, and associated earth and groundwater resources - determine their ecological and social value and sensitivity to potential development pressures.
  • Set environmental priorities, identifying sustainable natural systems in light of the development contemplated for the area.
  • Investigate the feasibility of retaining the creek and wooded areas as "natural" corridors by using various design techniques and mitigation measures to minimize negative impacts and, often, in fact, effect improvements to existing conditions.


The original report concluded that the future of the stream as a year round flowing, clean waterway was dependent on the system stormwater management and measures to ensure sufficient groundwater recharge. In addition, the maintenance or re-establishment of a continuous, vegetated corridor would be necessary to protect the stream, provide wildlife habitat, and enhance recreational opportunities.


Throughout the following years of subdivision development in the community, draft development and stormwater management plans that adhered to the original recommendations in the original environmental report resulted in:

  • Restored stretches of the creek where improved base flow and aquatic habitat conditions have upgraded the stream to a quality that supports a Brook Trout population
  • Residents use the open space areas associated with Idlewood Creek as recreational areas
  • Tree preservation techniques pioneered in this community provided the basis upon which the City of Kitchener formulated its official Tree Saving Policy
  • Goverrnment agencies, and others use the Grand River South/Idlewood community as an example of sustainable development



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