Showcasing Green Infrastructure Innovation in Metro Vancouver: The 2007 Series
The Green Infrastructure Partnership is collaborating with Metro Vancouver (formerly the Greater Vancouver Regional District), two member municipalities and UniverCity to present Showcasing Green Infrastructure Innovation In Greater Vancouver: The 2007 Series. The venues and dates for the three events in the 2007 Series are:
- Delta – September 21
- Langley Township – October 5
- UniverCity – October 19
According to Paul Ham, Chair of the Green Infrastructure Partnership, “The purpose of the Showcasing Innovation Series is to celebrate… and build on…the on-the-ground successes that are enhancing the ways communities are being developed and water is being managed.”
“The goal is to promote networking, build regional capacity, and move ‘from awareness to action' — through sharing of green infrastructure approaches, tools, experiences and lessons learned as an outcome of designing with nature”, adds Paul Ham, whose day job with the City of Surrey is General Manager, Engineering.
To download a copy of the first Announcement for the 2007 program, please click on this link to Showcasing Green Infrastructure Innovation in the Greater Vancouver Region: The 2007 Series.
What is Green Infrastructure?
Green infrastructure is associated with the management of water that runs off the land and how water runoff impacts on the sustainability of both terrestrial and aquatic habitat and resources.
Green infrastructure is also associated with how water is used and how water use impacts on the sustainability of water supply.
“Desired outcomes for water sustainability and green infrastructure can be achieved through infrastructure standards that reflect a full and proper understanding of the relationship between land and water”, comments Kim Stephens, Program Coordinator for the Water Sustainability Action Plan for British Columbia.
Showcasing Innovation Builds Capacity
“The Showcasing Innovation Series is a building block process — each time the objective is to raise the bar when celebrating successes in municipalities”, notes Meggin Messenger, who represents the BC Ministry of Community Services on the Green Infrastructure Partnership Steering Committee.
The Showcasing Green Infrastructure Innovation program was launched in May 2006 as a pilot in the Greater Vancouver region. It is designed for engineering, planning, land development, operations, and environmental departments in municipalities. In 2007, the program has been expanded to Vancouver Island and will be on alternating Fridays, commencing September 14.
The Showcasing Innovation program is organized as a workshop in the morning followed by field tour in the afternoon. According to Kim Stephens, “The series is structured this way to create opportunities for practitioners to network and share “how to do it” experiences on the ground. The host municipalities set the scene for the field tour by providing comprehensive and in-depth presentations.”
Showcasing Innovation in Delta: ‘Greener Developments, Roadside Rainwater Management, and the Urban Forest'
The Corporation of Delta will showcase how progress towards sustainability on-the-ground is being made incrementally through small steps. Changes in standard municipal practices that are being implemented today will ripple through time and result in cumulative benefits.
Moving ‘green infrastructure' from awareness to action requires a way to measure progress. The 100-acre Delsom Estates residential community illustrates how the Sustainable Template for Development has been applied through a collaborative process to achieve a ‘design with nature' outcome.
About 1/3 of the urban landscape is typically covered by road rights-of-way. This creates opportunities to capture rain where it falls and restore it to natural hydrologic pathways. Delta is implementing landscape-based solutions to rainwater management; and is planting an urban forest to mitigate climate change.
For program and registration details, please click on this link to download Showcasing Green Infrastructure Innovation in The Corporation of Delta. To view a comprehensive WaterBucket story on the projects that will be featured as part of the Delta program, please click here.
Showcasing Innovation in Langley Township: ‘Harmony and Integration'
The Township of Langley will showcase what can be accomplished with large-scale projects when Council, the community and staff are in alignment and embrace a ‘green culture'. Resource protection – for groundwater supply and fisheries habitat – is the driver for implementing ‘green infrastructure'.
Three new neighbourhood communities illustrate how a ‘water-centric' approach is changing the way that land is developed. Each development has built on the experience of the last in raising the bar for the next.
Featured projects will be the Routley, Yorkson and Northeast Gordon Estates neighbourhoods. Routley is defined by a multi-purpose greenway and shallow infiltration systems on individual residential properties. Yorkson has a ‘third-pipe system' for roof drainage; as well, it has a sand filtration treatment system plus deep-well injection for aquifer recharge. Northeast Gordon Estates is distinguished by its ‘green streets'.
Showcasing Innovation on Burnaby Mountain: ‘A Partnership in Action: from Vision to Implementation'
UniverCity, the community at the top of Burnaby Mountain will showcase the fruits of its partnership with the City of Burnaby – first, in developing a shared vision of what a ‘sustainable community' on top of a mountain would look like; and then, in taking that vision from concept to reality.
In 2000, translating high expectations for UniverCity into practical design guidelines meant revisiting accepted drainage engineering practice. The precedent-setting plan for rainwater management and watercourse enhancement set in motion a chain of outcomes that has resulted in British Columbia being recognized internationally as a leader in achieving ‘design with nature' outcomes in an urban environment.
The UniverCity experience became the heart of Stormwater Planning: A Guidebook for British Columbia. This then triggered development of the Water Balance Model, which in turn led to formation of the Green Infrastructure Partnership.
UniverCity on Burnaby Mountain is a pioneer application in North America of ‘adaptive management' in a local government setting. The goal of adaptive management is to learn by doing and constantly improve.
Green Infrastructure Partnership
The Green Infrastructure Partnership was formed in 2003 and is a consortium of four organizations. Under the umbrella of the Water Sustainability Action Plan, the mission of the Green Infrastructure Partnership is to facilitate implementation of design with nature infrastructure practices and regulation province-wide. If we design with nature, then the water balance can be maintained or even restored over time.
Posted September 2007