Planning Vancouver Together: What do you think?

Kennedy Stewart Photo by Sukhwant Singh Dhillon

THE City of Vancouver is reaching out to all who live, work and play in it to share their voice in the city-wide planning process called Planning Vancouver Together.

Planning Vancouver Together will be an intensely engaging process to develop a long-term, strategic vision and actionable Vancouver Plan – a plan that enables individuals, communities, and future generations to thrive, says the City.

The Vancouver Plan will ultimately set directions to guide future priorities into 2050 and beyond.

“From the housing crisis to the climate emergency, this is a crucial time for Vancouver and we need to come together to decide how we move forward as a city,” said Vancouver Mayor Kennedy Stewart on Thursday. “The choices we make now will have tremendous impacts on generations to come, so we need to hear from a diversity of voices and experiences to ensure that this is a successful process, including working with our local host nations and equity-seeking groups.”

The City is starting by listening to what Vancouver means to people: from those who are already passionate about their communities to people who have lacked the opportunities to participate.

“Over the next three years, the Planning Vancouver Together process will create a collective long-term vision for the future of our city, and identify priorities and key strategies to get there,” said Gil Kelley, General Manager of Planning, Urban Design and Sustainability. “This is much more than a land-use plan and will address vital areas such as reconciliation, equity, climate change, affordability, housing, the economy, jobs, transportation, cultural vibrancy and neighbourhood design.”

“Our intention with Planning Vancouver Together is to ensure that we engage with and hear from the full diversity of our population,” said Sandra Singh, General Manager, Arts, Culture, and Community Services. “Recognizing the extraordinary diversity in Vancouver, we will work to develop culturally responsive processes and seek to address any social, cultural, language, or economic barriers that may prevent people from participating meaningfully in the processes, so that the future Vancouver Plan reflects the voices and perspectives of all who live, work and play in Vancouver.”

From now until early 2020, City staff will be going to where people gather to help identify what matters most. Key questions include:

· What inspires you or brings you joy when you think about Vancouver?

· What keeps you up at night?

· What is the most pressing issue for you?

· What should we think about as we begin this process?

These insights will help identify the biggest opportunities and issues for deeper dialogue and analysis into spring 2020.

“By creating one guiding plan for the City, the Vancouver Plan, we can better serve our citizens and customers and align our capital investments and infrastructure in a resilient, sustainable and cost effective way for the future, said Cheryl Nelms, Acting General Manager of Engineering Services.

For more information and to take the first step in Planning Vancouver Together, visit vancouverplan.ca

Patricia Woroch, CEO, ISSofBC, said: “Planning Vancouver Together is an incredible opportunity for Vancouver newcomers to share their hopes and aspirations with individuals who are in a position to address them and make a difference.”

Zahra Esmail, Executive Director, South Vancouver Neighbourhood House, noted: “Diverse, racialized communities in South Vancouver are often lumped together and given just one voice. It’s wonderful to see interest from the City of Vancouver in hearing from people in Victoria-Fraserview, one of South Van’s distinct neighbourhoods, which will allow more depth of dialogue. It gives me hope that the upcoming Vancouver Plan process will be inclusive, meaningful, and focused on equity.”

Neil Wyles, Executive Director, Mount Pleasant Business Improvement Association, said: “As a resident and representative of Mount Pleasant businesses, I look forward to engaging with City Council and staff in Planning Vancouver Together. I am very motivated to see how it addresses the needs of the business community, and industrial and commercial property that will employ the projected 90,000 jobs coming to Vancouver. It is vital that, in the efforts to provide housing, the need for good paying jobs is recognized to ensure that locally employed people can live near to where they work.”   

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