City plans plan for sustainability (and public input)
By Timothy Schafer, The Nelson Daily
With six tentacles of sustainability thrust out into the community, city council is attempting to map several facets of the community at once — and coming close to completion.
Hefting the mantles of the initiatives of a housing strategy, a climate change action plan, a regional planning services plan, a community sustainability plan, a sustainable waterfront and downtown master plan, and transportation planning, there seems to be no shortage of plans at City Hall these days.
The plan for the plans is part of the provincial requirement for Official Community Plans, as dictated by Bill 27. The Bill requires an OCP to include targets for a reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, policies to achieve identified targets, and actions to achieve the identified targets.
In addition, the Bill would help the City ensure new developments meet or exceed greenhouse gas reduction targets, using incentives like more flexible fees structures for green developments.
“All six are once again priorities for city council in 2010,” said senior City planner Dave Wahn.
With the Healthy Nelson initiative now under its belt (phase one), the City has turned to phase two of the integrated community sustainability planning (ICSP): sustainable planning and sustainability strategy (funded by a $265,000 grant).
Public input on strategic directions for the sustainability plan will begin in October, said Wahn, with the final decision made by council in November.
The first round of the waterfront and downtown master plans begin in October as well, with a second round of stakeholder and public input in November. The plans are expected to be complete in March of 2011.
The greenhouse gas energy reduction plan (including the Bill 27 requirements) project initiation begins in October, with the project to be completed in March of 2011.
Under sustainable infrastructure, with the water master plan completed in 2007, the sewer master plan should be done in 2011.
All of the stakeholder and public input meetings will be advertised.
Phase three of the ICSP will be implementation, amendments to the City’s planning policy documents such as the OCP, transportation plans, zoning bylaws and subdivision bylaws.