Olivia Chow John Tory Photo: @carriealex19/Twitter

This morning the Ontario Home Builders Association hosted a mayoral candidates debate with Olivia Chow and John Tory on topics affecting the building and land development industry in Toronto.

Rob Ford, who is remains in a Toronto hospital undergoing medical tests, was not present at the event.

During the lengthy debate moderated by the Toronto Star’s Royson James, Chow and Tory squared off on a number of topics, including traffic congestion, shifting demographics in the city and whether they support the Ontario Municipal Board’s (OMB) influence in city planning.

“I think there is a need for an appeal body,” said Tory. “The impetus for reform has to come, in part, from the provincial level. I think for the moment the OMB is there, and I think we should move to the appeal body to show that Toronto is capable of running its own store.”

Chow said that if the zoning approvals process could move quicker, then some people won’t need to go to the OMB.

“A local appeal body is the way to go,” she said. “The city has asked many times, and I’ve said very clearly, I think in a city of this size, we don’t need the Ontario government to tell us what needs to be done.”

Twitter was abuzz with commentary and accounts live tweeting the debate. Below are some choice tweets we pulled:

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