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Moving Forward with Focus: A simplified process will ensure consistent and informed planning decisions as we implement The City Plan.

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The City has made a Land Development Application to repeal 77 plans in effect. Visit Engaged Edmonton to provide feedback.

No city is static, and The City Plan has put into sharper focus the need to simplify our land use policies. We are cleaning up our policy landscape through the City Planning Framework project, a two-phased project to simplify land use plans to ensure our neighbourhoods are adaptive and responsive to our collective city-building goals.

Streamlining our policies creates clarity and supports our city-building partners by reducing barriers and making it easier to work together with us to welcome the next one million people to our city.

Project Goals

We’re setting ourselves up for success through the City Planning Framework. The project has 4 goals:

  1. Simplify the planning framework
  2. Clarify the planning tools
  3. Develop the land use plan life cycles
  4. Align the framework with Branch work planning and corporate budget cycles

A graphic showing the City Planning Framework's 4 goals.
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Occurring over two phases, the City Planning Framework will improve our planning policy by creating a process to ensure land use plans remain responsive to the present and future planning needs. It will streamline our policy landscape, improve clarity and accessibility, and support our city-building goals. 

Phase 1 - Policy Cleanup

The City Plan directs how the city needs to develop to welcome one million more residents and the City is working to align its plans and processes to support The City Plan’s vision. 

For the first time, the City has undergone a broad review of all of its land use plans to determine which plans still provide direction for development and which have fulfilled their purpose.

Edmonton currently has more than 200 policies and plans in effect, some of which are 30+ years old. Plans are put in place to either guide the development of new areas or to address issues that existing neighbourhoods have had at specific times in the past. Some plans, though, remain in effect, even though they have fulfilled their purpose. 

The City has made a Land Development Application (LDA) to repeal these plans, and will present the rationale to Council at a Public Hearing planned for June 2021. The City will collect feedback from Edmontonians on the Engaged Edmonton platform from March 1-21, and present a What We Heard report to Council before the Public Hearing. 

Share Your Feedback

View the map of the plans proposed for repeal and provide your feedback.

How were the Proposed Land Use Plans Selected for Repeal?

The plans proposed for repeal were carefully reviewed and found to have fulfilled their intended purpose based on one or more of the following criteria:

  • Plans are no longer advancing their intended purpose, for example, to guide the orderly development of new land (greenfield) including infrastructure and land-use zoning
  • The City’s planning approach, needs, and direction have evolved over time
  • The implementation of recent planning documents provide updated policy direction for an area
  • Plans are beyond their intended time horizon

By retiring policy that is no longer relevant to current conditions, we can remove barriers to economic development for more inclusive communities. 

Edmonton offers great opportunities today because of the plans that helped create it. Residents, communities, organizations, industry and other city-building partners have contributed to our city by providing insight and feedback on how we shape the communities we call home.

The City Plan presents our vision for the future, but honours Edmonton’s foundation. By retiring plans that have fulfilled their purpose, we celebrate their accomplishments and move forward with focus, taking bold steps to achieve our larger city-building goals.
 

Phase 2 - Process Development

The second phase of the City Planning Framework will create an internal process for proactive reviews that will ensure our plans are responsive as our city evolves.

Timely monitoring, review and evaluation of our planning tools to improve customer service along with a more intentional and focused approach to the creation of planning tools will result in a planning landscape that is more strategic, purposeful and impactful. 
 
A graphic showing the City Planning Framework process.

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Timeline, FAQ and Feedback

Timeline

Phase 1 - Policy Clean Up

Q3 - Q4 2020
  • Internal Review of Land Use Plans
Q2 - Q3 2021
  • Public Hearing June 2021
Q1 2022
  • Land Development Application
  • Circulation of LDA application
  • Collection of Feedback and Development of the What We Heard Report

City Planning Framework Timeline Graphic

Phase 2 - Process Development

Q4 2021
  • Refine the Lifecycle Process
Q2 2020 - Q3 2021
  • Draft Lifecycle Process:
  1. Develop new tools
  2. Land Use Plans prioritization matrix
  3. Monitor Tools
Q3 2021
  • Engage Internal and External Groups
Q2 2021
  • Test the Life Cycle Process
Q1 2021
  • Training and Implementation

Frequently Asked Questions

What work is being undertaken?

The City Planning Framework is proposing to repeal plans that have served their purpose through a Land Development Application. The City Planning Framework simplifies the City’s planning process, making it easier to use and understand.

A simplified process helps us make consistent and informed decisions and achieve the goals in The City Plan.

How will a plan repeal impact me and my neighbourhood?

There is no immediate impact expected on Neighbourhoods or their development. Dozens of neighbourhoods across Edmonton have functioned well without land use plans for decades. When a land use plan is repealed, the Zoning Bylaw continues to regulate the use of every property. Policy direction for neighbourhoods that currently or no longer have an area plan are guided by the Municipal Development Plan, the City Plan.

City-wide planning directions, such as policies in the City Plan, guidelines, best planning practices and technical considerations, as well as public engagement will continue to influence how planning proposals are reviewed and recommended before Council.

If a landowner wants to change their zoning they will still need to make a Land Development Application to have their rezoning reviewed and approved by Council. Notifications of these applications will continue to be governed by the Municipal Government Act.

Please note that repealing these plans will not alter your existing land use rights.  

Why are you repealing these plans?

There are many benefits to repealing plans, including:

  • Clearer policy reduces barriers to economic development
  • Fewer plans means fewer amendments saving builders and homeowners application and consultant fees
  • Improved resource efficiency for Administration and communities by reducing the number of notifications to prevent engagement fatigue
  • Helps to simplify the application process by reducing plans that are outdated or challenging to interpret
  • Aligns growth expectations and allows for greater flexibility in how we plan and achieve our city-building goals

The City of Edmonton has no cyclical process to repeal plans that have either served their intended purpose or are no longer aligned with current policy. This results in plans remaining in effect beyond their intended use creating confusion for Council, community members, industry partners and sometimes administration.
 

Why are they being repealed now? Why not wait until after the pandemic, when District Plans are in place?

The work that is proceeding is the result of multiple years of work through Evolving Infill (2016-2018), The City Plan (2018-2020), and the City Planning Framework which was underway prior to the COVID 19 pandemic. While the pandemic has certainly led to changes in how the work is approached, it remains important work to do. 

With over 200 plans in effect, repealing those that have fulfilled their purpose prior to the District Planning work helps simplify our land use policies and allows us to focus limited resources at a time of fiscal restraint. Their purpose and direction no longer provides additional guidance towards meeting the City Plan. This will reduce redundancy as district plans are developed and contributes to the District Planning team's ability to focus on consolidating relevant land use, mobility and infrastructure information from remaining policies, strategies and geographic plans. 
 

What does it mean that a plan has “served its purpose”?

Plans have served their purpose if:

  • They are no longer advancing their intended purpose (ie guiding the orderly development of new land, infrastructure, or land use zoning)
  • They are done informing the creation of other statutory plans which are now in place in the area
  • The city’s planning approach and direction has evolved since the creation of the plan, and the purpose was never achieved
  • A newer planning or policy document that provides more up-to-date and relevant direction for the area has been implemented, rendering the plan obsolete
  • They are beyond their intended lifecycle (if they have an identified time horizon)
How were communities consulted on these repeals?

While the specific plans for repeal will be engaged on through the Land Development Application process, there has been a significant amount of engagement on the need to repeal plans more generally.

Both Evolving Infill and work that supported The City Plan, included specific actions and discussion that drove forward this need. The repeals are primarily an administrative function based on whether they had fulfilled their technical purpose as a land use plan. Policy is not changing or shifting.  The repeal process represents a clean-up of the City’s policy landscape. 

Meetings were held with city building partners such as Edmonton Federation of Community Leagues (EFCL), Urban Development Institute - Edmonton Region, IDEA. The list of plans selected for repeal will, be made public in conjunction with the Land Development Application process which will include notices to community leagues and Business Improvement Areas (BIAs), ensuring the public can provide feedback about plans selected for repeal and/or be notified and speak to this application public hearing.
 

Share Your Thoughts

Use the General Feedback Form to let us know what you think.

For More Information

City Planning Framework Team

Email cityplanningframework@edmonton.ca

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