100-YEAR ACTION PLAN FOR BOWKER CREEK WATERSHED RESTORATION: Bowker Creek Forum advances a ‘regional team approach’ to achieving water sustainability in the Georgia Basin

Bowker creek forum - hands across the malahat

Georgia Basin Collaboration

Since 2007 the CAVI-Convening for Action on Vancouver Island program has been bringing together engineers and planners in local government around water sustainability. One of the key outcomes of the CAVI initiative is relationship-building within, and between, the four populous Island regional districts: Capital, Cowichan Valley, Nanaimo, and Comox Valley.

In February 2010, CAVI partnered with the Capital Regional District and the Bower Creek Initiative to organize the Bowker Creek Forum. Held at the University of Victoria, this event was a celebration of a new way of doing business in the Georgia Basin. The Bowker Creek Forum provided a platform for inter-regional sharing.

Tanis gower - bci coordinator (120p)“A desired outcome in holding the Bowker Creek Forum was to share information about successful approaches, so that they can be replicated in other jurisdictions,” states Tanis Gower, Coordinator for the Bowker Creek Initiative (BCI).

“In addition, this forum was a chance for regional organizations, businesses and community members to learn more about and celebrate the accomplishments of the Bowker Creek Initiative.”

Bowker Creek Blueprint

While the context of the Bowker Creek Forum was Georgia Basin, the spotlight shone most brightly on the Bowker Creek Blueprint. Located in the urbanized heartland of the Capital Regional District, the Bowker Creek watershed is shared by the City of Victoria, City of Oak Bay, and District of Saanich.

Kim stephens - 2008 (120p)The Bowker Creek Blueprint is a 100-Year Action Plan. “To put it simply, the Bowker Creek Blueprint gives the community a road map for achieving water sustainability in an urban watershed. It’s a practical model for other communities with similar aspirations. This is an impressive achievement,” states Kim Stephens, Program Coordinator for the Water Sustainability Action Plan for British Columbia.

Major breakthroughs happen when decision makers in government work with grass-roots visionaries in the community to create desired outcomes.

To Learn More:

To access a set of five downloadable documents, click on Bowker Creek Blueprint: Water Bucket stories profile precedent-setting initiative for urban watershed restoration in the Georgia Basin.

Communities in Transition (CIT) is a signature program of the Real Estate Foundation of BC. It was created to help increase the ability of non-metropolitan communities to address the challenges they face when planning for use and conservation of lands. In March 2010, the CIT Information Resource Newsletter published a feature article by Kim Stephens that provided a practitioner’s perspective on the strategic importance of the Bowker Creek Forum.

To read the complete article, click on Bowker Creek Forum advances a ‘regional team approach’ to achieving water sustainability in the Georgia Basin. Or to download a PDF copy, CLICK HERE.