UBCM Urban Forum: Moving Toward Sustainable Urban Development in British Columbia (Sep 2003)


Designing with Nature –
Walking the Talk for Sustainable Community Design

In September 2003, UBCM organized a half-day Urban Forum as part of its Annual Convention.

Organized in two halves, the Forum coupled a presentation on a 100-year vision for the Metro Vancouver region with a presentation on an inter-governmental initiative to change the way land is developed and water is used in British Columbia.

In June 2003, Canada’s entry in the International Sustainable Urban Systems Design Competition was awarded first place for “A Sustainable Urban System: the Long Term Plan for Greater Vancouver”.

The story behind this win was presented by Johnny Carline, Metro Vancouver Chief Administrative Officer, in the first half of the Forum.

The year before, in June 2002, release of BC’s Stormwater Guidebook quickly gained international recognition for BC as a leader in implementing a natural systems approach to rainwater management in the urban environment.

The story of this initiative provided context for the second half.

To Learn More:

To download a copy of the 2003 Urban Forum program, click on 2006 Habitat Plus 30 and World Urban Forum – Sustainable Local Government.

To download a copy of the Backgrounder prepared for the Guidebook / Water Balance Model segment, click on The Water Balance Model – A New Tool for Protecting the Environment and Lowering Land Development Costs.

Creating the Future

“The combination of the two presentations was quite powerful,” stated Surrey Councillor Marvin Hunt, Forum Chair, in his closing remarks.

marvin-hunt_120p“Because the Guidebook and Water Balance Model presentation was about on-the-ground action, it showed how to make the 100-year vision real to BC’s elected representatives.”

“The take-away message is clear: If communities design with nature, the 100-year vision will become a self-fulfilling prophecy.”