“During the period 2000-2001, the mantra in British Columbia was ‘overcoming fear and doubt’ in order to move ahead with projects such as the East Clayton Sustainable Community in the City of Surrey, and UniverCity at Simon Fraser University on Burnaby Mountain in the City of Burnaby. In 2000, translating high expectations into practical design guidelines meant revisiting accepted drainage engineering practice,” stated Kim Stephens.
The University of British Columbia is leading a national initiative that is intended to create a network of experts that collaborate and share their experiences. Richard Boase of the District of North Vancouver made a defining presentation titled 'New Directions in Urban Watershed Health'. “A key message is that we were doing better 50 years ago when we did not even think about the need for rainwater capture,” he observed.
Canadian Water Network Launched Pan-Canadian Initiative at University of British Columbia Conference
A team led by Dr. Hans Schreier of the University of British Columbia (UBC) kicked off a national ‘knowledge translation strategy’ for rainwater management when it convened a pre-conference workshop, conference and field tour in June 2007 in Vancouver. From a British Columbia perspective, the event design had a distinct Water Balance Model flavour.
Knowledge Transition Strategy: University of British Columbia Hosts National Conference on Rainwater Management
“The vocabulary of the drainage practitioner is changing, and is being simplified so that there will be a clearer public understanding of source control options for capturing rain where it falls. This change has seen the single function view of traditional ‘stormwater management’ give way to the integrated and comprehensive perspective that is captured by the term ‘rainwater management’,” stated Ted van der Gulik.
Rainwater management is a key component of protecting quality of life, property and ecosystems. In the Greater Vancouver Region, a series of building block initiatives have resulted in a change in thinking among drainage practitioners. This change has seen the single function view of 'stormwater management' give way to the integrated and comprehensive perspective that is captured by the term 'rainwater management'.
Organized by Cate Soroczan, the event was an information exchange amongst agencies from across the country. It was also precedent-setting in terms of laying the groundwork for future inter-provincial collaboration. Twenty-plus representatives from seven provinces participated, namely: British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec and Nova Scotia.
Celebrating Green Infrastructue Program: Showcasing Innovation Series Launched in Greater Vancouver Region
The “Celebrating Green Infrastructure Program” is an outcome of a Consultation Workshop that was organized by the Green Infrastructure Partnership in May 2005. The goal of the program is to build regional capacity through sharing of green infrastructure approaches, experiences and lessons learned as an outcome of ‘designing with nature'. The program was launched in May 2006 when the first event in the 'Showcasing Innovation Series'was hosted by the District of North Vancouver. The Greater Vancouver program is a provincial pilot. The intention is that local governments on Vancouver Island and in the Interior will undertake similar initiatives.
COI Table of Contents – updated December 2009
This Community-of-Interest is the web-delivery vehicle for informing practitioners about the latest advancements in the state-of-the-practice for rainwater management.
From a drainage planning perspective, “Sustainability” means Design with Nature to improve the Built Environment while at the same time protecting the Natural Environment. The desired outcome is to sustain community livability.
The Stormwater Interagency Liaison Group (SILG), a technical committee of the Greater Vancouver Regional District, has provided funding so the Water Sustainability Committee (WSC) of the British Columbia Water & Waste Association can implement the Rainwater Management Community-of-Interest (COI).