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West Van wins provincial planning award for neighbourhood character

West Van was awarded gold for its community-led approach to neighbourhood character at the 2022 PIBC awards.
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The District of West Vancouver has won a provincial planning award for its neighbourhood character during the PIBC conference this week.

The province’s top planning body awarded the District of West Vancouver a big honour this week, handing out gold to its neighbourhood character working group for its planning practice.

The Planning Institute of British Columbia gave the district the award during its Elevation 2.0 National Planning Conference in Whistler this week, the institute's first in-person conference in over two years.

Winning gold for its “community-led approach to neighbourhood character,” Mayor Mary-Ann Booth told the North Shore News that she’s delighted that the Neighbourhood Character Working Group has been recognized for this important work.

“Council established resident-led working groups because they can address specific complex issues through collaborative research and effective community engagement.

“This complex issue has been a community concern for decades, but this volunteer group of citizens finally tackled it. They were asked to propose regulations and policies that respect and preserve the character of single-family neighbourhoods, while recognizing that we can’t go back in time, or even stand still,” the mayor said.

Giving kudos to council liaison Peter Lambur and the district’s planning staff, Booth said the team met the challenge, “and it was a long and rewarding journey.”

“For more than two years they worked on this complex, multi-faceted file, and did a commendable job, that’s now proudly acknowledged as an award-winning job. They found the middle road to preserving character while introducing more options for coach house infill and subdivision.

“Their recommendations recognize the importance of being a good neighbour, and that character includes a diversity of people. Strong neighbourhoods build strong communities, and everyone benefits.”

More information regarding the planning awards, along with other award winners, can be found on the PIBC website.