February 18, 2012
City Hall News
The Best Laid Plans
Chilliwack council to get
first glimpse at Downtown Task Force Report Tuesday
Starlee Renton, City of Chwk
for speeding up the renewal of Chilliwack's historic neighbourhood
will be presented to Council on Tuesday, February 21. The Downtown
Task Force has made twenty recommendations, addressing land
development and assembly, social issues, revitalization incentives,
marketing, unsightly premises, implementation and monitoring.
"The Downtown Task Force recognizes that some of our recommendations
are bold and will require further exploration and discussion," said
Task Force Chair, Ken Huttema. "However, we strongly believe we have
presented an action guide that could help us realize the vision for
this neighbourhood sooner than the thirty years suggested in the
Downtown Land Use and Development Plan."
At Tuesday's Council meeting, staff will recommend the Downtown Task
Force Report be received for information and that the Task Force be
formally disbanded. Council will also be asked to refer the report
to staff and the newly formed Implementation Committee, for further
analysis of resources, impact, timelines and potential partnerships.
Implementation of some of the recommendations will be done
incrementally, as market and economic forces dictate. Other
recommendations simply expand on the exciting work and improvements
that are already happening in this historic neighbourhood.
Council formed the Downtown Task Force in 2009 to address the timing
of redevelopment in Chilliwack's downtown area. Using the 2010
Downtown Land Use Plan as a guide, the Task Force was asked to look
at the challenges that are slowing us from achieving the downtown
vison and make recommendations that could help us reach it sooner.
To achieve their mandate, the Task Force examined relevant past
studies, reports and presentations on the downtown and became
familiar with the adopted Downtown Land Use Plan. They also looked
at best practices from other communities in the region, reviewed
applicable Bylaws and re- examined the boundaries of the
Revitalization Tax Exemption Zone.
The Task Force was comprised of members of Chilliwack Council,
representatives from the development and business communities, the
Chilliwack Chamber of Commerce and Business Improvement Association,
as well as Chilliwack Economic Partners and City staff. Find the
report on page 285 of the February Agenda Package
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