Consultations begin on Vancouver’s ambitious citywide plan

City of Vancouver opens up city-wide plan to public comment
WATCH: City of Vancouver opens up citywide plan to public comment (Aired: July 17, 2019)

Vancouver is launching public engagement Thursday on a sweeping new city-wide plan that will guide development in the city for decades to come.

On Thursday, Mayor Kennedy Stewart and the city’s 10 councillors fanned out to various Vancouver communities to start “conversations” about the new plan.

“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 Stewart.

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“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.”

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Pushback against increase to housing density in Vancouver
Pushback against increase to housing density in Vancouver

The last time a full citywide growth plan was undertaken was in the 1920s.

Vancouver did adopt a broader City Plan Directions document in 1995, which set the stage for the current patchwork of neighbourhood community plans that govern development in parts of the city such as Marpole and Grandview Woodlands.

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According to the city, the new plan will cover more than simple land use and transportation issues.

The new plan is meant to address the “social, economic, environmental and cultural aspects of daily life, in addition to land-use and transportation planning while integrating key considerations of reconciliation, equity and resiliency.”

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Plans for False Creek flats in Vancouver unveiled
Plans for False Creek flats in Vancouver unveiled

The consultations will include neighbourhood needs and growth, housing affordability, climate change resiliency, mobility and access to community amenities, and social cohesion and inclusion.

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Council approved the new planning process in November 2018 and consultations with stakeholders, including residents, businesses, First Nations and regional organizations, will run until spring 2020.

The city says it will hammer out strategic directions from there, with the plan refined and finalized between winter 2021 and spring 2022.