City Receives UBCM Grant to Support Uptown District Revitalization Strategy

City Receives UBCM Grant to Support Uptown District Revitalization Strategy

The City of Port Alberni has received a $21,950 grant to support the development of an Uptown District Revitalization Strategy (UDRS).

The grant funds, provided by the Union of British Columbia Municipalities (UBCM) and Ministry of Social Development and Poverty Reduction, will further a number of the City’s strategic priorities and goals as outlined in the 2019 – 2023 Corporate Strategic Plan. One such priority is for the City to respond to demographic change in the community and improve quality of life, specifically by revitalizing the Uptown District.

The UDRS will provide a high-level approach to encouraging the social and economic revitalization of the Uptown neighbourhood by way of developing partnerships and action items (programs, incentives, policy/bylaws, etc.) The overarching goals of UDRS are as follows:

• Identify a high-level vision to guide City Council and staff’s efforts aimed at Uptown District Revitalization;

• Work with the public, businesses, stakeholders, and local neighbourhood residents to identify current issues, challenges, and possible solutions;

• Develop specific actions, timelines, and partnerships to help implement the high-level vision; and

• Prepare information that can also be embedded within the City’s Official Community Plan.

The grant funds received will be applied to the UDRS planning and engagement process, specifically to collaborate with local stakeholders, social service providers, vulnerable populations, and residents living in poverty to ensure that the strategy is inclusive of their needs.

“As part of the consultation program, the City recently conducted a survey on the revitalization of the Uptown District, to which 70 percent of respondents thought that the City should do more to support individuals experiencing challenges around poverty, mental health and addictions,” said Katelyn, McDougall, Manager of Planning. “Over 50 percent of survey respondents also identified “poverty reduction” to be a top priority to help encourage revitalization in the area.”

The first phase of the consultation program launched on April 30, 2020, using the City’s local engagement platform. During the three-week consultation program, the City received 599 survey responses. The City’s Manager of Planning will present other findings from the consultation program at the June 22, 2020, Regular meeting of Council.


For More Information

Katelyn McDougall, Manager of Planning