The Canadian Institute of Planners has honoured the City of Edmonton with an Award for Planning Excellence for the Open Option Parking project and an Award of Merit for The City Plan. These annual awards recognize innovation, impact on the profession and are the highest level of recognition the Institute gives for professional planning projects.
The City Plan, Edmonton’s Municipal Development Plan and Transportation Master Plan adopted in 2020, ensures that as the city grows, it is building a fiscally and environmentally viable future for generations to come. It is a bold, visionary plan that puts equal importance on building on the city’s existing strengths and undertaking the transformational work required to achieve the future city.
“I am honoured to lead such a talented team recognized for their planning excellence,” said Stephanie McCabe, Deputy City Manager, Urban Planning and Economy. “Not only do these awards recognize professional excellence, they also mean we’re continuing to serve Edmontonians with innovative and transformational plans. These projects demonstrate how we are adapting to rapidly changing times while also ensuring that we’re building a fiscally and environmentally viable future for generations of Edmontonians to come.”
Open Option Parking removes minimum on-site parking requirements from Edmonton’s Zoning Bylaw. This gives businesses and homeowners the flexibility to determine their individual parking needs, making this approach more likely to result in the “right amount” of parking. It also helps remove economic barriers to new businesses and affordable housing, supports more diverse transportation options and moves us closer to achieving the vibrant, walkable and compact city envisioned by the City Plan.
“Edmonton’s Open Option Parking strategy can transform the city and inspire other Canadian communities to look at similar changes,” said a statement from the Jurors. “Crowd-sourcing data collection, and the effort to make parking discussions interesting and relevant, were both key factors that stood-out. This project will positively impact the sustainability of Edmonton’s future, while creating a more vibrant livable community.”