Mission Possible: Capital Region’s ‘Bowker Creek Blueprint’ demonstrates that “Outreach is a Powerful Tool”




Implementing a New Culture for Urban Watershed Restoration & Protection

“A decade ago, local governments in British Columbia were venturing into uncharted waters when undertaking watershed-based plans called Integrated Stormwater Management Plans, and known by the acronym ISMP,” reports Kim Stephens, Executive Director of the Partnership for Water Sustainability in British Columbia.  


ISMP Course Correction

“The genesis for ISMPs was a desire to integrate the community, engineering, planning and environmental perspectives. Local governments knew they had to do business differently in order to protect and/or restore watershed health.”

“Now, the experience of the Bowker Creek Initiative in the Capital Region demonstrates what can be accomplished through a ‘regional team approach’. Furthermore, the Bowker Creek precedent serves as a guide for implementing a ‘top-down and bottom-up’ approach that connects with the community and gets the vision right.” Kim stephens (120p) - 2009

“This unique multi-jurisdictional effort has produced the Bowker Creek Blueprint. This is a 100-Year Action Plan to systematically and incrementally restore the watershed landscape in the heart of BC’s Capital Region on Vancouver Island.”

“The Bower Creek Initiative has gone well beyond any other plan in terms of how it has achieved consensus; and how it has galvanized commitment to move from planning to action on the ground. It is informing a provincial ‘course correction’ in how to develop an ISMP that is affordable and effective, and creates a legacy,” concludes Kim Stephens. 


Galvanizing Commitment in the Community

”People eagerly embrace the opportunities for engagement and education. They really want to share their thoughts and experiences. Residents have a stake in restoring watershed health. There is so much experience that we can mine. We who live in the watershed are the experts,” stated Soren Henrich, a community organizer and member of the Bowker Creek Steering Committee.


To Learn More:

Click on Capital Region’s ‘Bowker Creek Blueprint’ demonstrates that “Outreach is a Powerful Tool” and download an article in PDF format that: 

  • introduces the Bowker Creek Blueprint as a provincially significant initiative;
  • elaborates on the important role of community engagement; and
  • provides a perspective on the momentum that early successes are generating.

To access the Bowker Creek Forum homepage on Waterbucket, click here; and to access the homepage for the ISMP Course Correction, click here.

Posted June 2011