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Boomtowns: Planning for Resource Regions in Northern Canada

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Presenters: Jason Thorne and Michelle Drylie (Planning Alliance, Toronto)

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Boomtowns: Planning for Resource Regions in Northern Canada

  1. 1. City-Region Studies Centre Regional Planning Speakers Series Boomtowns Planning for Resource Regions in Northern Canada Jason Thorne + Michelle Drylie, planningAlliance October 30, 2013
  2. 2. planningAlliance Today‟s presentation 1. Characteristics of resource regions 2. Case studies • Athabasca Oil Sands Area, Alberta • Thompson Region, Manitoba 3. Best practices for designing a regional planning process 4. Benefits of regional planning in resource regions
  3. 3. 1. Characteristics of Resource Regions
  4. 4. planningAlliance Rapidly growing resource regions Resource Regions
  5. 5. planningAlliance Canadian resource development Rapidly growing resource regionsregions Resource Regions
  6. 6. planningAlliance The Mid-Canada Development Corridor Resource Regions
  7. 7. planningAlliance Remote and under-serviced • Typically in remote areas, with few existing settlements. • High demands for infrastructure investment. • Typically low level of community services. Resource Regions
  8. 8. planningAlliance Resource Regions Difficult to predict population growth • Population growth tied to external factors (resource prices, global production schedules). • Significant influx by in-migrants hoping to benefit from resource spin-offs.
  9. 9. planningAlliance Accommodating workers • Housing shortages. • FIFO / camp model versus permanent residency. • Different needs for construction versus operations phases. • Worker attraction and retention. Resource Regions
  10. 10. planningAlliance Boom and bust growth cycles • Adaptive planning. • Flexible housing. Resource Regions
  11. 11. planningAlliance Resource Regions Economic diversification and post-closure planning • High dependency on single resource. • Need to support development of other economic sectors through long-term strategic planning. • Socio-economic approach required to address livelihoods, community development, environme ntal issues, etc.
  12. 12. planningAlliance Land use conflicts • Resource areas. • Environmental areas. • Settlement areas. • Aboriginal communities and traditional lands. Resource Regions
  13. 13. 2. Case Studies
  14. 14. planningAlliance Case Studies - CRISP The Athabasca Oil Sands Area • Approx. 97,500 population (incl. First Nations and Metis Settlements) and 12,000+ in work camps. • 1.3 million bpd. • Estimated 240,000 people and 6.0 million bpd in ~40 years.
  15. 15. planningAlliance Case Studies - CRISP The Athabasca Oil Sands Area • GoA‟s long-term strategic infrastructure plan to accommodate population growth as oil sands development expands: – Transportation (highways, rail, transit, air); – Schools, health facilities, and correctional facilities; – Water and wastewater treatment facilities; – Urban expansion; – Utilities, including transmission lines and pipelines.
  16. 16. planningAlliance Case Studies - CRISP Planning issues • Addressing infrastructure needs. • Predicting population growth based on a bitumen-based population forecasting methodology. • Identifying appropriate types and supply of worker housing. • Developing a flexible planning framework including a phasing plan and monitoring framework. “Based on our assessment of current services and infrastructure, we identified significant gaps in housing, health care and basic infrastructure”. Responding to the Rapid Growth of Oil Sands Development Final Report December 2006
  17. 17. planningAlliance Thompson, Manitoba • Known as the „Hub of the North,‟ providing educational, health, retail and government services to a region of approximately 65,000 people • Census 2011 population of 13,123 does not accurately reflect the City‟s large transient population or its relationship to the surrounding region • Vale is the City‟s largest private employer. Its 1,600 positions represent about 21% of jobs in the City • In November 2010, Vale announced the transition of its Manitoba operations away from smelting and refining and towards mining and milling, with surface operations slated for closure in 2015. Case Studies - Thompson
  18. 18. planningAlliance The Thompson Economic Diversification Plan Case Studies - Thompson
  19. 19. planningAlliance Planning issues • Leveraging Thompson and the region‟s strong resource sector to foster the development of other economic sectors. • Increasing the number of jobs in Thompson and the region through economic diversification. • Providing a high level of service within Thompson to a rapidly growing and changing region, including one of Canada‟s youngest populations. • Determining appropriate investments in infrastructure development to accommodate population and economic growth over the long term. Case Studies - Thompson
  20. 20. 3. Best practices for designing a regional planning process
  21. 21. planningAlliance Best Practices An informed, multi-stakeholder participatory process • Building trust and momentum through regular dialogue with stakeholders • Facilitated discussion to define the process stakeholders will participate in, with terms of reference that clearly articulate the roles and responsibilities of each organization/individual • Regular and transparent information sharing and opportunities for feedback in one-on-one and group settings • Preparation and support for „good meetings,‟ in which all stakeholders come to the table on an equal footing. Good meetings include a pre-set agenda, a consistent and clear format for minutes, an established dispute-resolution process and a clear understanding of the longterm work plan • Fostering local relationships and mutual trust by adhering to the process as defined in the terms of reference
  22. 22. planningAlliance Quantitative and verifiable baseline data • Supporting anecdotal evidence and lived experience with verifiable data (e.g. Statistics Canada, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, labour market studies, etc.) • Providing quantitative data in a format accessible to all users • Using baseline data to develop a planning rationale, identify gaps, set goals/objectives, support strategic planning, and identify opportunities for action • Engaging stakeholders in longterm, publicly accessible monitoring of the baseline. The baseline is a „living document‟ Best Practices
  23. 23. planningAlliance Stakeholder-informed mapping • Learning the region from those who know it best can complement baseline data from formal sources • Defining geographical boundaries/connections/flows through discussion about and visual representation of the lived experience of stakeholders • Generating buy-in to the process from organizations and communities who are often geographically excluded • Generating discussion and critique from organizations and communities not engaged in the process, resulting in a new understanding of geographical relationships Best Practices
  24. 24. planningAlliance An options-based approach to economic diversification • Broadening traditional definitions of economic diversification and development to incorporate structural elements that may be overlooked in a simpler model or definition • Provide plan options that respond to a diverse economic base and multiple opportunities for individual and community development • Distributing resources for planning and implementation across a range of plans to address the interests and priorities of multiple stakeholders • Empowering stakeholders to prioritize their needs and take responsibility for implementation Best Practices
  25. 25. planningAlliance Practical strategic plans • Equal focus on long-term strategic planning and near-term action to support organizations in making proactive decisions to address immediate needs • Establishing a strong regulatory framework to support and facilitate the implementation of action-focused plans. The framework must be flexible and easily updated/replicated • Building stakeholders‟ capacity to take on implementation and future planning throughout the project process. Ensure the process itself is understood by stakeholders as a technical output. • Developing implementation strategies that take into account local resources and capacity for implementation Best Practices
  26. 26. planningAlliance Establishing partnerships for implementation • Carrying the stakeholder relationships and trust developed through the engagement process into implementation with a few „quick wins‟ • Establishing the next phase of local engagement and relationship-building processes while facilitation support is still available to ensure a smooth transition • Successful stakeholder partnerships can reduce dependence on government and large industrial partners for implementation Best Practices
  27. 27. 4. Benefits of regional planning in resource regions
  28. 28. planningAlliance Benefits of Regional Planning
  29. 29. planningAlliance A shared vision • What will be the longterm legacy of the resource development activity? • What social, environmental, ec onomic outcomes are desired? • Manage expectations. Benefits of Regional Planning
  30. 30. planningAlliance A common understanding • The community‟s understanding of resource development, its impacts and its potential. • Industry‟s understanding of the region and its needs. Benefits of Regional Planning
  31. 31. planningAlliance Benefits of Regional Planning Basis for a community dialogue • A forum for engagement outside of often controversial issuespecific discussions and negotiations. • Establish dialogue mechanisms and relationships that will also facilitate future issuespecific discussions and negotiations.
  32. 32. planningAlliance Anticipate issues • Anticipate and plan for the long-term needs of industry and communities. • Early identification of future risks and challenges. Benefits of Regional Planning
  33. 33. planningAlliance Benefits of Regional Planning Align priorities and find efficiencies • Align infrastructure development priorities of industry and communities. • Strategic direction to company community development investments.
  34. 34. planningAlliance Benefits of Regional Planning Clarify roles and responsibilities • Provide clarity regarding “who does what”. • Properly position industry‟s roles and responsibilities with respect to regional development.
  35. 35. Benefits of Regional Planning planningAlliance Typical Outcomes Moving From • STAKEHOLDERS DISENGAGED FROM ONE ANOTHER / DISTRUSTFUL • REACTIVE AND UNCOORDINATED RESPONSES TO LONG-TERM CHALLENGES • CULTURE OF ‘FIRE FIGHTING’ AND MOVING FROM CRISIS TO CRISIS • SHORT-SIGHTED / PASSIVE APPROACH TO MANAGING ECONOMIC UNCERTAINTY • • LIMITED UNDERSTANDING OF THE LINK BETWEEN LAND USE AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT / SUSTAINABLE PROJECT IMPLEMENTATION STAKEHOLDERS’ PERCEPTION OF INDUSTRY AS RESPONSIBLE FOR PROJECT FUNDING AND ACTION Moving Toward • STAKEHOLDERS COMMIT TO A COLLABORATIVE PLANNING PROCESS FOCUSED ON TRUST-BUILDING AND SHARED WINS • THOROUGH UNDERSTANDING OF BASELINE CONDITIONS AND ADOPTED STRATEGIC VISION ENABLE PROACTIVE AND COORDINATED RESPONSES • MULTI-PRONGED, LONG-TERM APPROACH TO PLANNING • OWNERSHIP AND IMPLEMENTATION OF PLANS AND BEST PRACTICE • STAKEHOLDERS SEE INDUSTRY AS AN EQUAL PARTNER IN THE PROCESS AND EXPECT CONTINUED PARTNERSHIP
  36. 36. planningAlliance | rePlan | regionalArchitects 110 Adelaide Street East – Toronto, Canada 10104–103 Avenue NW, Ste 2401 – Edmonton, Canada Azur 15 Building 12, Boulevard Djily Mbaye – Dakar, Senegal Calle A y de las Lomas San Juan Alto – Quito, Ecuador Thank You Questions? www.planningalliance.ca | www.replan.ca | www.regionalarchitects.com

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