At the August 15 Council meeting, Council received and endorsed a detailed Phase 3 engagement summary report with 30 recommendations to help inform drafting an OCP, based on what was heard. Council directed staff to draft an Official Community Plan (OCP) per the 30 recommendations outlined in the report (see backgrounder). Once drafted, the plan will be presented to Council and North Saanich residents in 2023 for review and another phase of public engagement.
Over two months, nearly 800 people provided feedback on the draft vision, goals, and potential land use scenarios and policy directions related to the six OCP themes: agriculture and food systems, marine and land-based natural environment, climate action, healthy communities, jobs and the local economy and housing and affordability. Responsive to public input and a desire to reach as many perspectives as possible, several in-person opportunities, including two open houses, resident dialogue sessions and a Southeast quadrant workshop were offered, in addition to an online survey and virtual open house. There were also meetings with the OCP Advisory Working Group and the District’s Commissions.
All the input received is captured in a comprehensive engagement summary report: Staff Report – OCP Review – Phase 3 Engagement Summary & Recommendations Report (August 15)
Based on what was heard, several shared values, key takeaways, and 30 recommendations emerged. The recent phase of engagement underlined congruence around six key areas that will help underpin the drafting of the plan.
- Apply a climate lens throughout the entire OCP
- Protect the environment and agricultural lands
- Include First Nations at the table
- ‘One size fits all’ policies may not work in all instances
- No sprawl; and
- Collaborate across jurisdictions and with neighbours
North Saanich is projected to grow from 12,235 in 2021 to 13,000 in 2038. An OCP sets out the vision, goals and objectives for future land use and development in the District and contains policies to achieve this vision. This broad, over-arching policy document provides guidance and direction on a variety of topic areas including land use, environmentally sensitive areas, agriculture, rural character, housing, transportation, parks, and infrastructure and community amenities.
For project updates and more information about the Official Community Plan review process visit: www.connectnorthsaanich.ca/ocp.