Submitted. The first stage of the Abbotsforward Official Community Plan (OCP) update project is now complete, announced Mayor Bruce Banman today.
City Council received a report with the initial research and data collection of the Abbotsforward project this afternoon. The report summarizes preliminary feedback received through several community engagement opportunities, including statistics relating to Abbotsford’s population, housing and jobs, and elements that make up great cities.
“One of the key features of this report is that it focusses on planning for a future population of 200,000 people rather than for a timeframe based on how fast we grow,” said Banman. “This reinforces that the plan will ensure we have adequate community amenities, employment opportunities and a stable economy for our community going forward.”
The updated OCP will use this target population for developing a community vision and identifying areas suitable for growth within the city.
“Right now, Abbotsford is statistically a young community with a more diversified economy than elsewhere in the Fraser Valley Regional District,” said Banman. “As we continue to develop the new OCP this is the type of information that will help us to identify how we will be able to create a sustainable, liveable city for our increasing population.”
The report goes on to describe Abbotsford as the “Heart of the Fraser Valley” and includes a significant observation that Abbotsford is a complete city, but made up of incomplete neighbourhoods. The report shows this by illustrating many city elements – housing and job locations, park and trail networks, street connections, and gathering places – and describing how they fit together.
The next step of Abbotsforward is the start of stage two, which will use the information gathered in the background research report to develop themes and trends that will be discussed in the community in early 2015. Planned citizen engagement activities include online surveys, citizen circles and more roadshow events at various locations throughout the community.
Abbotsforward contains four stages, and the full background research report can be viewed at www.abbotsford.ca/stage1report or further project information can be viewed at www.abbotsforward.ca.
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