1. Neighbourhood Planning
Planification de quartier
1. Endorse the implementation of the Neighbourhood Planning initiative as per the Corporate Plan and the Community and Protective Services Strategic Plan and approve the undertaking of demonstration projects in Hintonburg and Vars; and
2. Approve that a suburban community be added to the pilot program in 2007.
FOR THE INFORMATION OF COUNCIL
The Committee approved the following direction to staff:
Direct staff to report to the Health, Recreation and Social Services Committee on the status of community development initiatives being developed by the City;
And that this include comments from Ottawa Community Housing Corporation, the Ottawa Police Service, Crime Prevention Ottawa, and community partners (including the Coalition of Community Health and Resource Centres, the Coalition of Community Houses, the Social Planning Council, etc.).
Recommandations modifiÉes DU COMITÉ
Que le Conseil :
1. appuie la mise en œuvre de l’initiative de planification des quartiers telle qu’énoncée dans le Plan directeur de la Ville et le Plan stratégique des Services communautaires et de protection, et qu’il approuve l’exécution des projets de démonstration des quartiers Hintonburg et Vars; et
2. approuve l’ajout d’une collectivité suburbaine au programme pilote en 2007.
Le Comité a approuvé la directive au personnel suivante :
Mandate le personnel pour faire un rapport au Comité de la santé, des loisirs et des services sociaux sur l’état d’avancement des initiatives de développement communautaire que la Ville est en train d’élaborer;
Et que cela englobe les commentaires provenant de la Société de logement communautaire d’Ottawa, des Services policiers d’Ottawa, de Prévention du crime Ottawa et des partenaires communautaires (notamment la Coalition des centres de santé et de ressources communautaires, la Coalition des centres d’activités communautaires et le Conseil de planification sociale).
1. Deputy City Managers, Community and Protective Services and Planning and Growth Management and Acting Deputy City Manager, Public Works and Services, report dated 26 April 2006 (ACS2006-CPS-HOU-0007).
2. Extract of Draft Minutes, 4 May 2006. (To be issued separately prior to the Council meeting)
Report to/Rapport au :
That Health, Recreation and Social Services Committee recommend that Council endorse the implementation of the Neighbourhood Planning initiative as per the Corporate Plan and the Community and Protective Services Strategic Plan and approve the undertaking of demonstration projects in Hintonburg and Vars.
RECOMMANDATION DU RAPPORT
Que le Comité de la santé, des loisirs et des services sociaux recommande que le Conseil appuie la mise en œuvre de l’initiative de planification des quartiers telle qu’énoncée dans le Plan directeur de la Ville et le Plan stratégique des Services communautaires et de protection, et qu’il approuve l’exécution des projets de démonstration des quartiers Hintonburg et Vars.
The Ottawa 20/20 growth plans repeatedly reference the need for collaborative community planning of land use, infrastructure investments, and service. Best practices in other Cities identify the benefits of moving towards a more place-based and collaborative approach to break through traditional “silos” and jurisdictions. The anticipated outcome of this project is a corporation that effectively works across silos – internal and external - to address the complexities inherent in the physical, social and economic development of a city.
Neighbourhood Planning is a process that requires a new integrated approach to planning. One that will better utilize City resources and provide value-added service to the citizens of Ottawa through their involvement in the planning process. Neighbourhood Planning is ultimately about how to foster integrated planning for all City services based on internal collaboration and active engagement with external, community based agencies.
This report to Council seeks to reaffirm the Neighbourhood Planning project as a key priority for the City and to ensure that the necessary supports are in place to undertake two neighbourhood demonstration sites in 2006.
In the municipal context, “planning” is traditionally understood as land-use planning and development, and is inclusive of a variety of consultation and collaborative processes with the various community stakeholders that have an interest in the shape of our city and communities.
A review of best practices across Canada and other nations, indicates that there is an increased focus on ensuring that planning includes not just land use but also how services are provided; how and why investments in “hard” and “soft” infrastructure are made. This includes consideration of how the economic and social development of communities is addressed as well as its physical development.
One key finding of the best practices review is that scale matters, specifically that the best way of ensuring alignment of the physical, cultural, economic and social development objectives is to operationalize planning activities at the neighbourhood level. This “place-based” approach to providing services and making investments means that residents and institutions are engaged collaboratively, with an eye to what is needed to make sure a particular neighbourhood work for the people who live and work there.
This corporate approach to Neighbourhood Planning will ensure that land use focused Community Development Plans (CDPs) are still undertaken where they make sense, but that other comprehensive consultative processes are used when appropriate to enhance the toolkit of planning mechanisms available to the City.
Demonstration sites have been identified for both the urban and rural areas of the City in recognition that one size does not fit all – and that there are lessons to be learned to accommodate the different needs of the diverse communities within the City.
Subject to Council approval of this report, the two demonstrations sites will be initiated in May and September of this year with neighbourhood plans reported to the Health Recreation Social Services Committee and Council in July and September of 2007 respectively. A final evaluation report will be submitted to Committee and Council in early 2008, bringing forward the lessons learned from both demonstration sites, as well as recommendations for the future of Neighbourhood Planning in Ottawa.
Les plans de croissance d’Ottawa 20/20 font souvent référence à la planification communautaire concertée relative à l’utilisation des terrains, aux investissements en infrastructure et aux services. Les pratiques exemplaires d’autres villes soulignent les avantages d’adopter une approche concertée qui est davantage axée sur les lieux, et cela pour contrer les cloisonnements et compétences conventionnels. Le résultat anticipé de ce projet est un organisme qui fonctionne de façon efficace au travers des cloisonnements, internes ou externes, pour faire face aux complexités propres au développement physique, social et économique d’une ville.
La planification des quartiers est un processus qui requiert une nouvelle approche de planification intégrée. Une approche qui fera un meilleur usage des ressources de la Ville et procurera un service à valeur ajoutée aux citoyens d’Ottawa de par leur participation au processus de planification. En fin de compte, la planification des quartiers porte sur les moyens de promouvoir, dans tous les services de la Ville, une planification intégrée fondée sur une collaboration interne et un engagement actif des organismes externes et communautaires.
Le présent rapport au Conseil cherche à réaffirmer le projet de planification des quartiers en tant que priorité clé de la Ville et à s’assurer que les appuis nécessaires sont en place pour entreprendre des démonstrations dans deux quartiers en 2006.
Dans le contexte municipal, le terme « planification » décrit principalement la planification de l’utilisation et du développement des terrains et comprend une variété de processus de consultation et de collaboration avec les divers intervenants de la collectivité concernés par la forme de notre ville et de ses communautés.
L’examen des pratiques exemplaires au Canada et à l’étranger révèle un intérêt croissant pour l’inclusion dans la planification, non seulement de l’utilisation des terrains, mais aussi de la prestation des services, et de la manière et des raisons de faire des investissements en infrastructures souples et massives. Cela comprend la considération du développement social et économique des communautés en plus du développement physique.
Une constatation clé de l’examen des pratiques exemplaires est l’importance de l’échelle, notamment que le meilleur moyen d’assurer l’alignement des objectifs de développement physique, culturel et social est d’opérationnaliser la planification au niveau communautaire. Cette approche de prestation de services et d’investissement basée sur les lieux signifie que les résidants et les institutions collaborent pour s’assurer que tout est en place pour qu’un quartier fonctionne bien pour les gens qui y demeurent et travaillent.
Cette approche globale de la planification des quartiers s’assurera que les plans de développement communautaires axés sur l’utilisation des terrains sont mis en œuvre lorsque approprié, mais que d’autres processus de consultation exhaustifs sont utilisés au besoin, afin d’enrichir la « boite à outils » de planification de la Ville.
Nous avons identifié des sites de démonstration à la fois dans des secteurs urbains et ruraux pour tenir compte du fait que tous n'entrent pas dans le même moule et qu’on peut tirer des leçons en cherchant à répondre aux besoins variés des différentes communautés de la Ville.
Sous réserve de l’approbation de ce rapport par le Conseil, les démonstrations dans les deux sites commenceront aux mois de mai et septembre de cette année, et les plans de quartiers seront soumis au Comité de la santé, des loisirs et des services sociaux en juillet 2007 et au Conseil en septembre 2007. Au début de 2008, un rapport d’évaluation final sera soumis au Comité et au Conseil, et comprendra le détail des leçons tirées des deux sites de démonstration de même que des recommandations sur l’avenir de la planification des quartiers à Ottawa.
The need for improved community collaboration was identified in the Ottawa 20/20 vision in the context of building liveable communities.
The objectives of collaborative community building will be to ensure that processes surrounding planning decisions are inclusive and creative and that they result in community plans that implement the policies of this Plan (Ottawa 20/20 City of Ottawa Official Plan, May 2003, p. 56)
The Human Services Plan speaks to this further:
Ottawa’s 20/20 vision of broad social participation targets neighbourhood involvement as a keystone of urban engagement. Neighbourhoods thrive by developing their own leadership and defining their own direction and character. (Ottawa 20/20 Human Services Plan, May 2003, p. 36).
In December of 2004 the Community and Protective Services department identified twelve priority projects to help deliver Ottawa 20/20 to residents. Neighbourhood Planning is one of the twelve priority initiatives. The objective of neighbourhood planning is reflected in the Community and Protective Services Departmental Strategic Planning document "How Can We Help?”:
This project gives cititzens an active role in determining the future of their neighbourhood. Citizens, business owners, property owners, community groups, and other stakeholders collectively form partnerships with the City to assess their neighbourhoods’ strengths and weaknesses and develop strategies to improve the social, economic and physical infrastructure of their community. (How Can We Help? p.14)
In January 2005, the Mayor’s State of the City address stated:
I have asked the City Manager to make strengthening neighbourhoods a key focus of the new Corporate Plan. I have asked him to sit down with his Deputy City Managers and find ways to take all the work that we are already doing in neighbourhoods and villages, across all City departments, and make sure departments are working together and working with communities to resolve locally relevant issues and to support community development to the maximum extent possible…. (Jan. 2005)
Neighbourhood Planning fits within the Corporate Plan within the Neighbourhood Agenda:
The City will partner with target communities in a Neighbourhood Planning process. This will integrate land use planning, social service delivery and economic development. (City Corporate Plan, 2006-2009, pg. 5)
As a first step, consultants were engaged to undertake a best practices review and develop a methodology for neighbourhood planning appropriate for the Ottawa context. The Best Practices Report submitted by Dillon Consulting (July 2005) outlines best practices from the cities of Vancouver, Winnipeg, Saskatoon, Halifax/Dartmouth, Portland and Washington. It proposes a methodology for a made-in-Ottawa Neighbourhood Planning project. The report drew these main conclusions:
To date an Internal Steering Committee has been struck with representation from all areas of the corporation. This committee will report to the three Deputy City Managers - Public Works and Service (PWS) Department, Planning and Growth Management (PGM) Department, and, Community and Protective Services (CPS) Department - who will co-sponsor the project. Currently a City-wide Advisory Group will be formed comprised of representatives from organizations such as the Greenspace Alliance, United Way, Social Planning Council, Federation of Community Associations, Community Health and Resource Centres Coalition, Transport 2000, Neighbourhood Watch Coalition, Ottawa Homebuilders Association, Federation of Business Improvement Associations, Council for the Arts, and the Council of Heritage Organizations in Ottawa. And finally, criteria have been set, and an analysis undertaken, leading to the identification of two recommended demonstration sites.
Neighbourhood Planning is ultimately about how to foster integrated planning for all City services based on internal collaboration and active engagement with external, community based agencies. The current Community Design Plan (CDP) process provides an example of how things are currently done and how relatively minor shifts in process can effect significant changes in outcomes. Community Design Plans are primarily focused on land use issues, but are increasingly being confronted with social service and economic development issues. For example, the Constance Bay CDP includes recommendations that CPS department prepare an emergency plan for the community, a community billboard, more youth programs, and that police introduce a crime prevention program. In North Gower, concerns were raised about economic development, parks, and recreation.
Until now CDPs have been predominantly land use focussed exercises. Staff in PWS and PGM are voicing support for the introduction of a more holistic approach in some neighbourhoods. CPS, PWS and PGM staff support working in a more integrated manner. A corporate approach to Neighbourhood Planning will ensure that land use focused CDPs are undertaken where they make sense, but that other comprehensive consultative processes are used and available when appropriate. This project will allow us to start the work of making it happen, learning as we progress through each demonstration site.
This is not a totally new concept. Cities around the world are moving to this model as service delivery models increase in complexity and services overlap. And informally, City staff are working in increasingly inclusive ways in particular situations. Recent examples include having Parks staff sitting on Technical Advisory Groups (TAG), or inviting the engineers to CDP meetings. If these sorts of cross connections were built into a formalized process we can ensure that it happens regularly as a way of working at the City.
Meetings with Planning and Growth Management (PGM) staff support having a cross-departmental process to ensure that CDPs are aligned with other significant corporate objectives, particularly capital and services investments, and that social and economic development issues are being fully and appropriately addressed from day one.
Public Works and Services (PWS) has also been clear in its request that the three departments work together to improve outcomes. PWS recognizes that its mandate is primarily on construction of physical infrastructure. Staff acknowledge not having the time and resources to conduct a full consideration of other community issues at the design stage. For this reason they are looking to Neighbourhood Planning as a tool to ensure that issues are considered and addressed at the initial stage of each project so that solutions can be built into the final design maximizing the benefits of their work for the community.
The impact of NP on communities will be significant. The neighbourhoods around Wellington Street provides a good example. A CDP is about to be undertaken, PWS will be investing millions of capital dollars in this area, and the community is actively engaged and keen to work with the City to maximize the redevelopment. In the current world, PGM and PWS will engage at the CDP table, and CPS will be brought in most likely in its Parks and Recreation (PAR) capacity and one recreation planner might be in the loop. In a Neighbourhood Plan world, there would be much greater cross corporation engagement. In the example of Wellington Street, the following could happen:
By approaching the Wellington St. project with a Neighbourhood Planning framework, the City will support the engagement of a broad spectrum of neighbourhood stakeholders in a consultative process rather than a series of disconnected events. The result will be holistic planning of Corporate and possibly other stakeholder engagement and investments, with a sharing of ideas and input beyond physical and land use issues, to produce a full, broad consideration of “neighbourhood”, resulting in a vision that would support future service delivery and investments made by the City and other agencies and services.
Ultimately, full implementation of Neighbourhood Planning processes will give citizens an active role in determining the future of their neighbourhood. Citizens, business owners, property owners, community groups and other stakeholders would form partnerships with the City to assess their neighbourhoods' strengths and weaknesses and develop strategies to improve the social, economic and physical infrastructure of their community. The resulting plans will allow the City to ensure the coordination, integration and responsiveness of services and investments to meet community needs immediately and over time.
Neighbourhood Planning is not simply the demonstration sites. The demonstration projects cannot and will not succeed as stand-alone projects. They require the on-going realignment of Corporate processes to support a more place-based approach to planning in the City of Ottawa. The Neighbourhood Planning demonstrations are intended to identify the processes and structures needed to undertake successful Neighbourhood Planning and to formalize relationships and processes with those communities involved.
One basic assumption underlying the work of the Neighbourhood Planning Steering Committee is that the needs of each neighbourhood are distinct. This applies neighbourhood to neighbourhood as well as type of neighbourhood to type of neighbourhood.
The first step in the identification of site recommendations was for the Steering Committee to develop a list of objective indicators to assist in identifying a neighbourhood which has potential as a demonstration site. A sub-group of the Neighbourhood Plan Project Steering Committee met multiple times to compile and refine a list of potential indicators. The selection of indicators involved a consideration of several factors; including the availability of data and its cost, the relevance and resonance of the indicator, the connection to neighbourhood infrastructure, as well as the ability to paint a picture of how one neighbourhood compares to others.
In order to consider demonstration site possibilities the following data was assembled:
Once the Steering Committee developed it’s initial indicator list, it was reviewed by the following community organizations: Social Planning Council, Federation of Community Associations, Ottawa Carleton Home Builders Associations, and the Coalition of CHRC's for feedback.
The data pointed to a large number of neighbourhoods that could potentially benefit from a neighbourhood planning demonstration project. In order to narrow the list further, the following other key elements/characteristics/assets were considered:
The first demonstration site will follow upon Council’s approval of this report. It is anticipated that the first site will begin its work in May of 2006 with a project duration of approximately 14 months. The first Demonstration report and Neighbourhood Profile prototype will be submitted to Health Recreation Social Services Committee and to Council in July 2007. The second demonstration project will begin in September of 2006, and 16 months later it's Neighbourhood Plan report and profile will be submitted. A final Evaluative report will be submitted to Council in early 2008, bringing forward the learning of both demonstration sites, and the recommendations for the future of Neighbourhood Planning in Ottawa.
A Neighbourhood Plan report will provide an overview of the status of the neighbourhood, including an identification of issues and assets. With no new resources available for implementing Neighbourhood Plans, the focus of the Neighbourhood Plan report will be on low cost, redeployment of resources, and partnering solutions. Recommendations that require additional funds will need to be long term, and will require funding strategies be developed. It is important that the plan recommendations be not solely focused on elements that are the City’s responsibility. The potential of bringing all stakeholders to the table, increases the potential actions that a neighbourhood plan report might include.
Included below is a road map for the general process of neighbourhood planning, which provides a description of each step in neighbourhood based collaborations. The involvement of the community is vital to the success of the neighbourhood planning process, leading to the creation of successful and vibrant neighbourhoods throughout the City of Ottawa.
All interested members of the community will be invited to an Open House to introduce and discuss the upcoming neighbourhood planning process. At this time interested participants will be asked to serve as community representatives on the neighbourhood planning committee.
Serving on the Local Planning Committee (LPC) is open to all interested members of the local community. The committee will ideally include 8-12 persons of various interests and backgrounds who are committed to implementing positive change in the neighbourhood. The LPC, with assistance from City staff, will identify issues affecting the community and develop strategies to address these issues.
Part of the neighbourhood planning process will entail identifying processes and mechanisms to help determine the appropriate nature and mix of representation within particular neighbourhood planning projects.
Area Community Associations
Community Resource Health Centres
Business Improvement Associations
Other Key Stakeholders Identified by Local Steering Committee.
Initially the LPC will discuss the present condition of the community, detailing the manner in which the community has developed in the recent past. The process will involve creating a community profile that will include information such as: population numbers, land use and traffic patterns, housing, economic development, parks and recreation, neighbourhood safety, as well as measuring the extent of interest in the neighbourhood.
Via public consultation, the LPC will hold a visioning workshop to discuss the future of the neighbourhood, and plot a common vision that highlights key neighbourhood issues and opportunities. The creation of a neighbourhood vision creates a common base from which the community can work together to create realistic goals and strategies for successful long-term planning.
Through a series of information gathering techniques, meetings and presentations, key issues in the community will be identified. Based on these findings, the LPC will acquire an understanding of neighbourhood issues, the value placed on them by the community, the practicality of addressing them via the neighbourhood planning process, and the goals that need to be set to move issues forward. The information gathered in this stage will form the foundation of the LPC and clearly establish priorities within the community.
Once the LPC has reviewed and approved the draft neighbourhood plan, a round of public consultation is held to generate feedback on the document. After a general consensus is reached in support of the draft neighbourhood plan, the document is updated and submitted to Council for adoption.
In order to achieve neighbourhood goals, it is essential that all stakeholders participate in implementing the plan. The implementation of priority actions is the true key to success of a neighbourhood plan, and therefore the City of Ottawa must ensure that it is properly organized to manage the process. The timeline for implementing the Neighbourhood Plan will depend on the nature of the neighbourhood, however recommendations will be prioritized based on existing budgets and the Long Range Financial Plan (LRFP) over the short, medium and long term.
Neighbourhood planning is a constant work in progress, and will be subject to regular monitoring and evaluation to ensure resources are properly aligned and actions are completed. Monitoring is also necessary to allow neighbourhood plans to adapt to changing local conditions, as well as national and global trends. City staff will deliver a progress report to City Council on an annual basis or as required until all recommendations have been fulfilled.
The desired results of the Neighbourhood Planning initiative, to be achieved in 3 years, include:
Specific project deliverables include:
It is important to note that Neighbourhood Planning is not about resetting rules for working in communities, the Neighbourhood Planning process will respect the current City policy frameworks. Neighbourhood Planning, rather, is intended to provide another tool to assist the planning efforts of the City, the neighbourhood, and the partners at the table.
Ultimately the Neighbourhood Plan Report and Profile belong to the neighbourhood. The City will facilitate and participate in the process, but the outcome belongs to the neighbourhood players. It is recognized that the development and implementation of a neighbourhood plan can only be achieved by working in partnership with a full range of stakeholders including the private sector, the public and non-profit sectors and the public at large. The actions required to achieve the goals of a neighbourhood will also require collaboration and partnership. The City has a key role in neighbourhoods, however it is but one of a long list of important parties involved. Therefore the plan can only be owned by the neighbourhood, no one specific stakeholder can have sole ownership.
The Recommended Sites:
Based upon the indicator data and the potential for learning, the project steering committee recommend the demonstration projects be undertaken in Hintonburg and Vars.
I. Ottawa West (Hintonburg)
Hintonburg has a population of 7,940. Hintonburg represents an excellent cross-section of demographics; not simply a concentration of poverty, but a diversity of incomes, ethnicities, and cultures all of whom share in common a geographic space and a main street. Hintonburg also has diversity of land uses with 10% commercial properties, 41.8% residential and 5.8% Institutional. The level of break and enter crimes and assaults in Hintonburg is high in comparison to other neighbourhoods. A large percentage of the population has a family income under $20,000 and only 26% have incomes over $80,000. Hintonburg also shows a great deal of mobility of population given that only 37% of it’s population has not moved in the past 5 years.
Hintonburg as a community is characterized by a strong and well organized group of community and business organizations (defined in terms of size of membership, breadth of activity, credibility/trust among residents, City staff and developers). This group has had many prior meetings and discussions with a range of sectors in the community in anticipation of potentially engaging in a neighbourhood planning type of process. It is anticipated that there will be considerable City investment in Hintonburg over the next 3-5 years, including road reconstruction, a Community Design Plan, Bayview yards redevelopment and the Light Rail Transit system.
Hintonburg is a neighbourhood that is ready to work with the City. The neighbourhood has already begun a movement called Creative Neighbourhoods which seeks to research, understand, and explore the future potential for Hintonburg. This initiative has engaged a full time social work student from January to April 2006. The student is working on outreach, asset mapping, and social capital building activities, all of which would be helpful to the Neighbourhood Planning process.
Moreover, City staff are about to embark on a CDP in advance of planned road reconstruction work, and are keen to undertake a collaborative planning approach as a NP demonstration site.
Neighbourhood Planning is an example of the City learning how to accommodate the "one size does not fit all" philosophy of the amalgamated City of Ottawa. A major goal of the Neighbourhood Planning process is to determine what the distinctions are that make planning in a rural area different from planning in a suburban or in an urban area, so that these lessons might be applied to future planning at the City.
While there are a number of villages in the eastern area of Ottawa, one village is being recommended for this exercise for a number of reasons. Firstly, it would be logistically easier to work with one village and it’s surrounding area. This will allow the demonstration project to consider not only the village but also the rural residents and business in the surrounding area in a balanced way maximizing the learnings from the demonstration. Living in the rural areas does not equate to living in villages for every resident. So our rural demonstration site needs to include the village dweller and the more remote dweller as well. Vars allows for a wider scope of learning in the rural demonstration. The village of Vars is slated to receive a new firehall which is an opportunity to look at maximizing the positive impact of a relatively large capital project.
The Census Neighbourhood of “Cumberland” is in the eastern reaches of the City of Ottawa and is comprised of a collection of rural villages and rural land. It includes: Cumberland village, French Hill, Leonard, Sarsfield, Bearbrook, Vars, and Navan. A snapshot of the census neighbourhood of Cumberland indicates it has a population of 12,221. Its rate of growth is slightly higher than the city average, but it is a very low mobility community, meaning that those who move in don’t move out very often. Very few of its residents are below the Low Income Cut Off (LICO), the crime rates for break and enters and assaults are low relative to other census neighbourhoods. An average amount of income is spent by residents on major basic expenses, meaning it is an affordable community to those who live there.
The village of Vars and surrounding area has a population of 1250. It is a community with 52.3% of residents earning over $80,000 per year. It is a stable population with over 77% having been in their homes for over 5 years. Approximately half of the Vars population report their first language to be French, and most of the remaining half report English (1.2%) other. It is a homogenously caucasian community. Levels of crime (break and enter, and assaults) are low in comparison to other areas of the City.
In 2003 residents of three of the eastern villages in Cumberland: Carlsbad Springs, Sarsfield and Vars – initiated a strategic planning exercise called CASAVA. While focused specifically on Vars, the demonstration project will continue and support the general work of CASAVA in terms of understanding the connectedness of rural villages to each other and to the surrounding, often agricultural, area.
This report recommends Council endorsement of the Neighbourhood Planning initiative as a key priority for the City, as reflected in the City’s Corporate Plan, including support for two neighbourhood demonstration sites in 2006.
Neighbourhood Planning is focused on fostering integrated planning for all City services, where required, based on internal collaboration between Departments as well as active engagement with external, community based organizations and agencies.
In support of this collaborative approach, the Neighbourhood Planning initiviative is co-sponsored by the three front-line Departments (Planning and Growth Management, Public Works and Services, and, Community and Protective Services) who play lead roles in planning for the land-use, infrastructure and social needs of the City.
This corporate approach to Neighbourhood Planning will ensure that land use focused Community Development Plans (CDPs) are still undertaken where they make sense, but that other comprehensive consultative processes are used when appropriate to enhance the toolkit of planning mechanisms available to the City.
Demonstration sites have been identified for both the urban and rural areas of the City in recognition that one size does not fit all – and that there are lessons to be learned to accommodate the different needs of the diverse communities within the city.
Subject to Council approval of this report, the two demonstrations sites will be initiated in May and September of this year with neighbourhood plans reported to the Health Recreation Social Services Committee and Council in July and September of 2007 respectively. A final evaluation report will be submitted to Committee and Council in early 2008, bringing forward lessons learned from both demonstration sites, and the recommendations for the future of Neighbourhood Planning in Ottawa.
The Neighbourhood Planning concept has grown directly out of the 20/20 Smart Growth process and documents. Further to that, the best practices research entailed extensive consultation with centres across Canada and in the US to share their experiences and gleen their advice. This list includes the cities of Vancouver, Winnipeg, Saskatoon, Halifax/Dartmouth, Portland Oregon, and Washington DC.
Locally, the following city wide umbrella groups have been consulted: The United Way of Ottawa-Carleton, the Federation of Community Associations, the Coalition of Community Health and Resource Centres, the Social Planning Council, the Ottawa-Carleton Home Builders Association, and the Chair of the Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committee.
A presentation to the Chairs of City of Ottawa Advisory Committees was held on February 6, 2006.
Feedback received from stakeholders helped inform the contents of this report.
Lastly, and significantly, the demonstration sites will be live examples of constant and ongoing indepth consultation and collaboration with the neighbourhoods under study.
$150,000 has been approved in the 2006 budget for this project.
Community and Protective Services, Planning and Growth Management and Public Works and Services Departments to implement the direction of Committee and Council.