City of New Westminster's Smart Growth Checklist
Introduced by the City of New Westminster on September 1st, the Smart Growth Development Checklist will be applied to any project seeking a zoning amendment or development permit. It includes a range of options to measure the social, environmental and economic sustainability of a development proposal. “Smart growth” can be defined as developing an urban form that enhances liveability and economic vitality.
Developed by New Westminster City staff in consultation with local architects and developers, City advisory committees, and staff from the GVRD and Smart Growth BC, the Smart Growth Development Checklist provides applicants with information on ways to incorporate smart growth ideas, such as energy efficiency and local employment opportunities, into their development proposals.
“We welcome new development,” explains Mayor Wayne Wright of New Westminster, “and it is important that the quality is there.”
The Checklist will also provide Council, staff and residents with information on the degree to which a development project advances City objectives. One of those objectives, as stated in the Official Community Plan, is to guide and manage growth in a manner that is consistent with the principles of sustainable development and complete communities.
“Smart growth just makes good sense,” says Mary Pynenburg, Director of Planning for the City of New Westminster. “When we consider development or re-development, we believe in using our land efficiently. That means more affordable housing, more green space, and a pattern of land use that supports transit.” The Checklist will enhance these objectives by providing a clear and concise summary for easy reference by architects, engineers, landscape architects and investors working on projects in the city.
The City of New Westminster is already a leader in smart growth. The City ranked high in a recent report compiled by Smart Growth BC on urban form, liveability, and economic vitality. New Westminster developed historically as a community of compact neighbourhoods, with a diversity of services and amenities near residential areas. The City and its partners are committed to building on these historical assets and carrying the principles of Smart Growth forward.
“We are happy to share with others what we have learned about smart growth,” explains Mayor Wright. The Checklist will be shared with partner municipalities in the GVRD. Feedback from users will be reviewed early next year to ensure that the Checklsit continues to advance New Westminster’s objectives. The City is currently working on another checklist designed specifically for single-family developments.
The Smart Growth Development Checklist is available on the City website under “New Additions” at http://www.city.new-westminster.bc.ca/whatsnew.htm.
For more information please contact Chris Atkins at (604)527-4562 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org