Creating the Future in Coquitlam: OCP Amendments Provide Foundation for Watershed-Based Community Planning


Coquitlam_OCP Policies_Turn Ideas into Action_2003

Turning Ideas into Action

“In 2002, Metro Vancouver and local governments had generally embraced the concept of watershed-based community planning, but none had yet developed a solid mechanism for rolling out watershed-based approaches and processes,” states Melony Burton, City of Coquitlam Watershed & Drainage Coordinator.Melony Burton_120p

“In May 2003, Council amended the City’s Official Community Plan (OCP). The new policies required that Neighbourhood Plans take into account watershed conditions and needs. This meant that Integrated Watershed Management Plan (IWMP) objectives would be realized through Neighbourhood Plan policies.”

Integrated Watershed Management Plans

“A decade ago, the new language and direction in the Official Community Plan provided City staff with the mandate to turn ideas into action,” says Dana Soong,  Coquitlam’s Utility Programs Manager.Dana-Soong_2013_120p

“First and foremost, we were able to include the development of Integrated Watershed Management Plans (IWMPs) in the City’s Financial Plan.  This funding assurance meant we could complete all IWMPs by 2014 as per the legislative direction.”

“Secondly, linking the IWMP and neighbourhood planning processes gave our Planning and Development Department and other departments a vested interest in the outcome of watershed plans and a reason to become active participants in the process.”

“Thirdly, the OCP supported new approaches to rainwater management in order to mitigate the impacts of land development. This laid the foundation for source controls in the Hyde Creek IMWP and later on for the city-wide Rainwater Management Design Requirements and Guidelines we use today.”

To Learn More:

The foregoing is extracted from the “Coquitlam story”, the second in the Watershed Case Profile Series released by the Partnership for Water Sustainability. To download a complete copy, click on Watershed Planning & Rainwater Management: Creating the Future in the City of Coquitlam.

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