Day 1 | Policy and Investment Leadership Implications
Summary of Day one: Key actions identified and policy leadership required to recover Canada’s downtowns.
Note to readers: This video session was transcribed using auto-transcribing software. Manual editing was undertaken in an effort to improve readability and clarity. Questions or concerns with the transcription can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org with “transcription” in the subject line.
Mary W. Rowe [00:00:05] We’ve had several hundred people on over the last several hours. We’ve covered quite a cross-section of topics and we’re just making sure that we’re doing our own continuous learning here. And so we appreciate that. We’ve got joining us nigel Jacob, who’s a senior fellow with the Burnes Center for Global Impact at Northeastern and he’s the Emeritus, co-chair and co-founder of the Mayor’s Office for New Urban Mechanics. And I always remind him he is, of course, a proud Canadian from right around the GTA. Anneke Smit, who’s the director of the Centre for Cities at the Faculty of Law at the University of Windsor. Shauna Sylvester from the Wosk Centre, the ED there and from the Centre for Dialogue and also many of you will recognize her because she was on City Talk day after day after day, coming in from Cop 26. And then Noah Zon a great colleague that’s helping us from Springboard Policy, whose founder and fellow there or principle rather. So thanks gang, for coming on. We’ve had quite the time. And we’re going to have quite the time tomorrow. So I appreciate you giving us a chance to, you know, I said to the gang to this game, when I invite them, I said, treat it like the post game show where we’re going to say, OK, what did we think of that play and what about this? And so we sort of came in on challenges, solutions, actions, I think is the frame we’ve done. I’m going to go to you first, Noah to give us a sense of what you’ve been hearing. And then I would really appreciate people that win the gold star for still being on with us. In the chat to start putting in things that you think fit this kind of analytical mode so that we don’t lose the edges that we’re trying to push here and what the agenda needs to be. So Noah I’ll go to you first and again as I said, please folks, volunteer into the chat thoughts that you’ve got. Go ahead Noah.
Noah Zon [00:01:49] I’m just unmuting myself. So I am taking Mary’s challenge seriously to think about this as the after game show, I’m going to start out with a bit more of the play by play recap that’ll help us set out that sort of colour commentary and analysis that can follow. And so our team’s been enjoying listening all day, and we’ve pulled out a couple of sort of cross-cutting themes that maybe we can use as a jumping off point for what we’ve heard and what we need to do based on what we’ve heard, some of the good ideas and challenges we’ve heard. So we’ve pulled out three challenges that we heard, three sort of solutions that came out and one call to action for us to think about both in this conversation and tomorrow and of course, for the days, weeks and months ahead. So just run through those quickly. But I want to not, I want to let folks on this panel in the chat, they had a chance to respond to and add their takes.
Noah Zon [00:02:52] The first challenge, really we heard in every panel is that every community has been hit differently. Every city has been hit differently within cities. We heard the sort of micro postal code level of the way different economic sectors have been hit, but also from a human level. Different experiences in the pandemic, whether you’re, you know, the factory you’re working in, if you can work from home or not, high income, low income gender, racial, racialized community experiences. So you need to think about our policy responses in a way that can be responsive to those differences. I’m getting already ahead into solutions, but that’s the challenge we heard. We also heard a lot about the need to bring people back. And just if we heard about transit volume still being a small fraction of what they were pre-pandemic office towers today largely empty, but also not just employees, but students and international visitors and domestic visitors. This is sort of a fundamental challenge ahead. And then when Tim Richter was speaking in the context of housing, he talked about leadership and intergovernmental leadership being like a awkward high school dance where everyone standing at the sidelines and somebody needs to step up and ask somebody else to dance. And so that characterizes the knotty intergovernmental considerations here. What we need federal, provincial and local leaders and indigenous leaders to work together in ways they haven’t on most of the issues that we’re focused on here. And so we’re going to need sort of different partnerships and leadership is something we heard in a number of fronts.
Noah Zon [00:04:46] To focus not only on challenges, but the more optimistic some of the solutions we heard cross-cutting reforming funding arrangements around cities and urban areas. Absolutely. Moving from some of these short term rescue to long term stable operating funding for core services like transit and housing. And thinking about things like revenue tools to make sure that for the medium and long term, the money matches the big challenges we need to face and sort of core services and thinking about the engagement and accountability that should match how we make, how we spend our money on the things that matter. Heard in a number of fronts needing to step up in leveraging data for better decision making that’s more responsive, that enables more innovation across all aspects of our downtowns, public, private, nonprofit services and getting more targeted as a result. And something a little bit more specific. Just building a lot more housing, which we can also think about, is just thinking big. Also in our housing conversation, we heard about the scale of the very large national housing strategy still paling in comparison to the amount of housing that was being built in each year for high growth times in the 60s and 70s. So what does that mean as sort of our call to action for all of us have gathered here together virtually and in our work going forward?
Noah Zon [00:06:23] We heard a lot about moving from the current challenges to really thinking about the vibrant downtowns we heard about making sure that people feel safe to come back, but also that people need to be lured back in a number of ways through good services, through opportunities to live and work, as well as to make things fun. People have options now an employer with hybrid and remote work, and people have considered or started to move elsewhere. And so how do we make sure that people enjoy their experiences coming back downtown? But I’ll leave it to. I’m sure others drew some other things out of the conversation as well.
Mary W. Rowe [00:07:10] Thanks Noah. I mean, as you say, we’re just getting in the beginning of this sort of trying to get some feedback. I mean, there are a lot of things that weren’t said as well, and I’m anticipating that some of the folks that have been listening will nod their head and say, Where was this? Where was that? Shauna, you did your own sets of consultations a couple of months ago about what the visions were for downtowns in and around Vancouver. And I’m curious if you want to if, someone’s just put into the chat the links to your reports, which is great, but I’m wondering if you want to reflect for a minute about what you heard through that process. And then I’m going to ask Nigel and Anneke to reflect on what they heard today. Go ahead, Shauna.
Shauna Sylvester [00:07:44] I thought what Noah had said, there is a lot of connectivity that the whole social infrastructure has been downplayed for so many years. We talk about the bigger physical infrastructure. What’s been really clear through the pandemic and then through the crisis that we’ve been going through in British Columbia around climate change impacts and the flooding the fires is that the social infrastructure matters. The hardest things that happened through the pandemic in the early days is that we shut our civic assets. So we’ve just heard from librarians how absolutely critical they are for a whole range of reasons. And so that whole idea of thinking through the city, from the social to the physical and how we create those connections, whether through our building policies, whether through our transportation and mobility policies, also the whole issue of the extent to which the arts plays a really critical role came out over and over and over in our conversations. The extent to which people centered opportunities for volunteering and connecting into community. Now those are things that are about the very local. Place based initiatives. There’s also the bigger pieces that relate directly to federal policy. And Mary, you had talked in just, you know, is it appropriate for libraries to be funded out of the property tax base? Well, there’s a whole question about what we’re what is being put on the plates of cities at this stage. It’s not just revitalizing Main Street. What has happened to those businesses that were on Main Street? Right? What’s happened because of the climate volatility to our communities? There’s a whole other question going on about resilience and what is the role of federal policy?
Mary W. Rowe [00:09:35] And who pays for that right
Shauna Sylvester [00:09:37] Who pays for that? And what are the tools that we have? And it’s a really rethinking. I’ve never felt like I’ve been in a place that is more important right now that we rethink how we have been doing? What we’ve been doing in terms of our treatment of cities and the urban environment.
Mary W. Rowe [00:09:56] I mean, do you think we’ve got an opportunity. I want to invite everybody to open their mics so that we’re, so that we can make it like an after game show. You should feel free to interrupt each other. And what about in this? Because this is really where we want to do some free wheeling, but what do you think Shauna? I mean, what do you think the chances are that we could come out of this with a different kind of approach to these investments? And is it as simple as just, well, let’s define infrastructure differently so that the federal government, when it funds infrastructure, understands that it’s also going to fund libraries? I don’t know.
Shauna Sylvester [00:10:25] Well, I think that the infrastructure is a piece. Let’s define resilience different.
Mary W. Rowe [00:10:29] Sure, okay.
Shauna Sylvester [00:10:30] So we’re not I mean, nature based solutions are really important part of climate adaptation, but resilience is about dealing with the isolation, dealing with the integrate, having emergency planning so seniors are not left in a flooding area and having no act.
Mary W. Rowe [00:10:45] Well, did you know this great anecdote out of the library? I don’t know whether we have any of the librarians still on, but we did a CityTalk on libraries early in 2020 and found out that the one of the systems had decided a couple of months in that it would phone all its cardholders who were over 65, I think, or 70, maybe just to see if they knew how to do the digital system. And so they deployed their staff to call them. And when they called them, the 68 year olds and the 70 year old said, No, no, I’m fine. I’ve got that fine. They were glad for the call because they just wanted to have a visit with somebody. And then the librarians started to say, Well, you know, work, and the staff came back to the directors and said, Well, no, they didn’t really need help getting online, but they want to keep talking to us. So we’re going to keep calling them. You know, there’s just something about this as you suggest the connection, the way that we reach out to one another. Anneke you’ve been in here on and off most of the afternoon, and I know that you’re one of the people that’s listened and didn’t hear certain things. Do you want to comment a bit on what you heard and didn’t hear?
Anneke Smit [00:11:43] Sure. Thanks so much. I heard an incredible amount of interesting, inspiring stuff, and it’s been great to be with you all afternoon. You know, maybe I’ll just I’ll say a couple of things. First, Shauna I’m really glad that you brought back in that connective tissue piece because I think that some of what CUI does so well, and it’s one of the messages that I’ve kind of internalized in my own work too, is thinking about the way we handle the connective tissue of all the pieces of city building in a perennially cash strapped politically weakend or weak environment. And so I’m really pleased to hear that, you know, I think that question of hitting communities differently. You talked about this of equity piece and all of that, and I think that’s really key. You know, we know that building back and we’ve lost businesses, we’ve lost a lot of small business and that’s something we can hear more about. And maybe tomorrow as well as I think, Noah said, even by postal code, we know that the impacts are different, essential workers where COVID has spread access to vaccines, everything. So there’s that piece coming from a mid-sized city or sitting in a mid-sized city right now. I’ll say that as well. I think that’s the lesson coming out of all of this is again thinking through how you know what these different, what these different opportunities and challenges are in different, different sized cities. In some cases, the midsize cities are actually sitting in a really good place because, you know, the down. The downside is is that housing prices are rising rapidly. The offside right now is there’s an incredible push for investment and I think real opportunity for investment and for doing that well, including on housing, right, that there is more investment in this community than there has been in some time in housing and more interest, even from those outside in doing some really creative and innovative things and the money’s there to do it. So those are, you know, sometimes the midsize cities have a little bit of a different feel. By contrast, questions like transit are even more challenging here because we didn’t have a vibrant transit system to start with. So at the same time as there was a build up and a lack of funding, including from federal, the federal level, you know, we’re now challenged with more reasons to scale back. And so those are the kinds of challenges we need to think about. And you know, I think we heard some about this, but I’d like to hear more too about the ways that we innovated during COVID that actually we don’t want to lose sight of right. Patios are an example.
Mary W. Rowe [00:14:03] The good things.
Anneke Smit [00:14:04] Struggled to do that in so many communities for so long, and suddenly there were restaurants and cafes. I will slow down things interpretation.
Mary W. Rowe [00:14:14] I’m glad they don’t just say that to me. They’re saying it to you too Anneke as that the interpreters are having trouble keeping up with us. So just slow it down a bit.
Anneke Smit [00:14:23] Yeah, patios. Absolutely. An example of of good innovation in many communities, bike lanes are another. So those kinds of pieces that have been really positive. And I’ll leave it there for now that I’ll just say I think there are some governance pieces as well, that have really been highlighted in terms of how our municipalities deal with the connective tissue and some systems pieces that we need to look at as well. In particular on housing, but sort of moving ahead. It’s not just, we know what the problems are and we really need to think about how to get this stuff done. And some of that is regulatory as well.
Mary W. Rowe [00:14:58] So I’ll come back to the governance piece in a sec, but I also just don’t want to leave completely the actual built environment of the downtown because we did hear from people over the last couple of hours, concerns about how are buildings being used? Somebody just in the chat said, What about the spaces between buildings? Maybe this is part of where the regulation goes into it. Can we, can we embrace adaptive reuse, whether it’s an old faith institution? Or maybe it’s an office building that you don’t need all that commercial space for? Nigel, you’re a person who has a very broad perspective about how municipal government has had to continue to change. And I’m wondering what your response is to some of this post-pandemic thinking. Are we going to be able to adapt our physical fabric, should we be? And how aggressive should we be at thinking about how that might work?
Nigel Jacob [00:15:49] I think we can. And so yes, we can. The question about how inclusive that discussion is, I think, is in consideration. So you brought up right in the beginning the question of diversity and inclusion and equity, all those notions about who gets to decide who gets to be at the table to have the discussion. You know what? What what about homeless folk? What are they or the houseless folks? But how do they, you know, they are often considered to be, you know, like human detritus, you know what I mean? And they aren’t actually part of these dialogs. One of the artifacts of the day was since I’m the last guy talking right now. I wrote a lot of notes and all of them are now unintelligible because I was writing fast. And so I’m going to have to wing it. I agree with everything that’s been said. And so I have some metathemes I think that I picked up. Because with everything I would say has been said. So I mean, you’re all awesome, the whole day has been awesome. One of the themes that where we started out, so I missed a bit in the middle, unfortunately, so I was there at the beginning of the day and I have been here for the last half day. I think one of the questions we have to ask ourselves is how we measure cities, right? So I saw a lot of hard quantitative data in the beginning.
Mary W. Rowe [00:17:21] Yep, you did.
Nigel Jacob [00:17:22] Right, and there was no room there for qualitative data. So when we talk about who gets to be at the table and talk about the future of downtown, finding a way to intersect quantitative data and qualitative data, doing ethnography of city dwellers of downtown dwellers. I mean, like…
Mary W. Rowe [00:17:43] Who is actually there and what’s the composition? We did get asked it
Nigel Jacob [00:17:47] Exactly the people.
Mary W. Rowe [00:17:47] What’s the composition of people? Yeah.
Nigel Jacob [00:17:50] Yeah and the homeless and so on. So that’s one consideration is thinking more broadly about what comes as data. Right. So I think that means we’re not just, you know, I’m a computer scientist. So right. So I’m all about gadgets and gizmos, but there’s a whole anthropological side here about, you know, the ethnography of the city. So that’s one consideration. The other thing that was just mentioned is this question about how to make, how do we encourage governments to experiment and just try things, right? So that patios and outdoor seating, all those kinds of things, those are all brilliant ideas, but they’ll be forgotten, right in two years after. Right. If we don’t do anything, those things will absolutely be forgotten. And I think there is a space here for I think there should be some research done. And I think we I think there is space here for that. Experimentation doesn’t come for free, you know, I mean, it would be great if you did, but I think we have to invest in the experimentation that government does.
Mary W. Rowe [00:18:59] Who invests in that Nigel? I mean, you’re a Canadian living in the U.S., so you have a particular perspective on this. But I hear you. We’ve all been sort of musing on this that things that weren’t even possible.
Nigel Jacob [00:19:09] I think it comes from a different bunch of different places. I think it comes from local government, provincial government, you know, federal government. I think it’s, you know, and I think they all have a part to play in putting some of the money in, you know, local government is best positioned to be able to from the people. Maybe or maybe not.
Mary W. Rowe [00:19:24] You need to provide the staff.
Nigel Jacob [00:19:26] Right and then maybe there should be innovation fund. Right. So when you’re calling innovation funds to to tax dollars, that’s not cool. So maybe that’s not a place for local government, but maybe just for the federal government or the provincial government.
Mary W. Rowe [00:19:40] I mean, would you would you go even further? What about innovation zones? I mean, one of the questions, as you say, is how do you try things? You know, during the pandemic, we were forced to suddenly try things so they suddenly had to figure out how do we make roads available for people to walk in them? How do we do the patio thing? We tend to not be very open to that. We don’t. Pilots are very difficult to maneuver, but you’re in the business where you’ve encouraged municipalities to do it. Do you have sort of suggestions for our colleagues here?
Nigel Jacob [00:20:10] There’s a lot to this. So I think one of the things we got to do is move beyond pilots. Also, like in my own way of thinking, I’m not trying to pick on you, but I think pilots are something that you do because you have some space or time left over.
Mary W. Rowe [00:20:24] Right, right, right, right.
Nigel Jacob [00:20:25] You get some freebies from from IBM. I think we need to be more thoughtful about that. And so we need to be doing real experiments, know experiments in that we’re playing with the built environment. You know, sometimes those, that language or those notions come out of like tactical urbanism, you know, tactical urbanism is an idea that has been played with at the edges of government. But government doesn’t do that well. You know, it’s something that is more easily done by civil society. But maybe we should, you know, we should make space to say, you know, maybe this is innovation zones. But the questionnaire about who gets to determine the innovation zones and who gets to have a say on what happens there. I think these are all eminently doable is just they were we just can’t do them in a knee jerk way. I think they require thought. I mean, there’s a got to be thought.
Mary W. Rowe [00:21:15] Little more intentional. Yeah, go ahead, Aneeke. What would you say?
Anneke Smit [00:21:20] Yeah, I think this is this is a great conversation in the innovation zone thing I see coming up in a number of different contexts right now. And it actually ties really well with the response I had to to Nigel’s earlier comments. When you said these innovations don’t come without a cost. And I actually thought you were going to go is the sort of opportunity cost that we do one thing and we don’t do another. We move quickly to something else. I mean, that’s not where you went. But I think it is important to raise it too. One place where I really see a need and I think we can call it innovation is in the way we consult. And I know there’s some interesting work happening in different pockets. Sean, I think you’re institutes doing some work on that as well. We’ve been pretty active there too, because we really see every institution in our community and across the country in comparable circumstances struggling with this. And we went from a kind of high watermark and where in Covid where a state of emergency legislation actually allowed municipalities to move forward without even council meetings, never mind a broader consultation, and canceled a lot of the sort of normal consultation. Now we’re obviously, we’ve innovated and we found ways for those things to happen, in some cases in ways that are more accessible to others. But we’re also more and more aware again, we see who’s being left behind and whose voices we’re not hearing. And so I think when we look at even things like patios and bike lanes, there have been real legitimate concerns about who’s not getting consulted, where bike lanes are getting put. You know what, what the impacts are on some communities who are often not heard, you know, and then as we looked at things like innovation corridors and doing some really interesting stuff, there are not a lot of great examples of that happening in a way that really brings along the local community where they tend to be located. So I think, you know, the slowing down is actually a counter that’s important as well.
Mary W. Rowe [00:23:04] You know, I’ve been thinking that we’re a bit guilty of this because we tend to “we” meaning the urbanist sort of club in that we tend to sort of shorthand, Oh, well, we did patios, we did bike lanes. But the truth of it is we also did things like we got public washrooms into parks and we got ways of doing. I mean, in Vancouver in Shauna’s town, they found a way to resettle people out of Strathcona and Oppenheimer Park in a very supportive way into more supportive housing, and they were actually encamped. So I wonder if we have to ourselves start to find those stories of things that actually worked well, that were innovative and that can be instructive for us as we move forward so that we’re not and I don’t know whether it’s enough to get us over the aversion of risk that we just as Canadians have. But I’m…. Go ahead, Shauna.
Shauna Sylvester [00:23:55] I was going to say Mary there were examples that was our starting point in Vancouver. We asked people what was compelling in this period, what happened for you? That was actually positive. We asked them what they were missing as well, and that was really fascinating. A number of those things came up. I want to go a little bit further. I want to take it up a bit because I think that there is this point right now that we’re in this really interesting moment around cities in the history of our relationship to cities with the federal government. And I think that’s come out so much through CUI work in this space is that it is time, I think, to renegotiate that relationship. Now I know we can’t open the constitution, or maybe we can’t. But this idea that cities having that direct relationship, that idea that cities have the power, the important role that they’re playing in the connection with citizens. And that’s where I see it. You were talking in innovation and Nigel in innovation, in innovation. Let’s look at democratic innovation as well at the same time. And let’s look at all of that through an urban lens. And can you imagine if this country started to think about the solutions of the issues that we’re dealing with with far greater an urban lens? And I think we would move so much more quickly and have so many more engaged citizens and residents pooling resources so that it’s not just coming from government, it’s coming from all of those other sectors. The leverage capacity that citizens, residents, people bring at a municipal level is so much easier, so much more flexible, so much faster, and you’ll ever see it at the provincial or federal level. And so.
Mary W. Rowe [00:25:43] Well you could also argue that the federal government got very involved in our lives through COVID suddenly. I mean, they suddenly were cutting big fat checks and they were the lifeline. You know, we all were tuning in. I mean, I can’t imagine another period in our lifetimes where we spent so much time listening to what the Government of Canada was talking about. So is there a moment as you’re suggesting, we know that this particular government has ambitious goals around climate and around housing and around equity and indigenous reconciliation? Is there a way for us to position municipal capacity as the way for those to actually be able to achieve this right? Noah, what have you done thinking on this yet, did you pick any of that up as you were listening to folks today? I mean, you can see on the chart there’s a whole bunch of people here who want to go to urban development agreements or they want to go to a ministry of urban affairs. Or they’re wondering whether we need a government shift sort of along these.
Noah Zon [00:26:36] Yeah and I think we need to. It’s, you know, when we’re talking about the different responses of things we’ve done differently and innovated during COVID, you know, some of the places that my mind goes are certainly federal. I mean, CERB and CUES and the various acronyms that have been the lifeblood of bank accounts for humans and businesses have generally been federal. Most of those programs were developed from scratch. There’s some good, some not as good across all of those. And we can talk about those. But I think we’d want to think about both what is good and bad and what we want to keep from those programs. But also, I think you’re raising what we want to keep about the fact that the federal government played a direct role. Working with not just provinces and local governments, but with banks in the case of delivery agents for CEBA business loans. What do we want to keep about that?
Mary W. Rowe [00:27:39] There are a bunch of relationships that have been established, and we know that there are going to be all sorts of ways in which they’ll continue to invest. So I guess that’s part of the dilemma. Nigel, when you look at that, I’m sure that just I want to go back to this idea of innovation. Do you have notions about this in the Canadian context? I mean, for instance, could we create innovation zones in downtowns? Could we alter the tax treatment both at the municipal and the provincial level? Could we give HST GST holidays for investments in downtown? I don’t know. Is there some way to rethink? I wonder about the future of ground floor retail period. And I wonder about it, certainly in downtowns, is there a way to treat it differently?
Nigel Jacob [00:28:17] I don’t see why not. I don’t see why we couldn’t. I think it would just require some thought, you know I think everyone was very, I mean, say what you will positively or negatively, you know, when Mayor Bloomberg was in New York and he was changing the flow of traffic and know street widths, and he just did it. These when did I mean, you know, essentially that’s what he was doing. I mean, he didn’t do it in a very democratic way. That is his way. But I think it could, those things can be done. And if you look, there’s lots of examples, you know, in Western Europe. You know Amsterdam does lots of really cool street festivals recently there just for brief periods of time, turning off regulation on chunks of roadway to try different things. And Barcelona has done this. And so there there are models. I think there’s a some really cool happening in Colombia, you know? So this is it’s this idea of like experimenting with the physical infrastructure with roadways is definitely there. But it is like this, this notion that it came up before the question about governance and I think it’s harder to think about, right, because it’s not roadways and curbs, but it is just as vital. And that’s where the democracy happens, right? In terms of like how like who gets to decide right and who is at the table and does everyone get a vote and all those kinds of things.
Mary W. Rowe [00:29:39] Can you can you answer some of those questions instead of just rhetorically asking them? I mean, what do you think that might be? Do we want? I mean, we know that participatory budgeting, do we want to do something like that? Do we actually?
Nigel Jacob [00:29:49] We want to go further than that. I think we want to go further than that.
Mary W. Rowe [00:29:51] OK, what would that be?
Nigel Jacob [00:29:53] So I think if we create an innovation, if we create the concept of innovation zones that are overseen for the sake of argument by an innovation department team, whatever you want to say, whose job it is to sort of work across local government and maybe vertically as well, maybe maybe to reach into the state and to try different experiments about all those questions about governance. So maybe you assemble a community, right? This community advisory boards, I mean, we know how to do that. I mean, instead of just coming up with a plan, what if they were advising on the specifics of what was happening? And these experiments are being run like not next year, but we’re going to do them on Tuesday.
Mary W. Rowe [00:30:36] And then and Nigel, could this be a fund? Could this be funded by all three orders of government? Could it be like a kind of commitment that would be signaled?
Nigel Jacob [00:30:44] I think so.
Mary W. Rowe [00:30:44] So you’d throw jurisdiction out the window basically and you say, let’s actually just solve some problems.
Nigel Jacob [00:30:49] If you look at who’s doing what, right? And so I was saying, so look, in local government, if we’re going to be doing the hiring, it makes sense for us also to be paying for staff or maybe getting some support and getting the province on staff all though it’s often hard but for the sake of argument, you know, maybe the funds for that work come from? I was about to say the state, the province or the federal government, you know, and then we and then we think differently. I just think that different levels of government are just good at different things. And I think that as you say
Mary W. Rowe [00:31:16] You know where I see that and Anneke I’d be interested, whether you respond to this. Where I could see this happening and where we have seen and actually I thought your city manager from Windsor might have mentioned it today, but he didn’t very much is in transit. That there are opportunities in smaller cities to do interesting small transit experiments, and it’s quite hard. It’s very difficult in a big city like Toronto to be able to do it because it’s just gazillions of dollars. But in the smaller communities. And I wonder also with housing, could we be actually doing some experimentation on this in smaller, more constrained environments? Because you know that if you if it works, then it can be copied? Anneke thoughts on that because you’re in Windsor? Would the city be I’m talking about small C city, would the community of Windsor be amenable to trying some things?
Anneke Smit [00:32:07] I think so. I do. I mean, I think, you know, mid-sized cities, I think also let’s not throw the baby out with the bathwater because there’s a difference between something like the size of Innisfil, which is where, you know, they did Uber stuff, right? And then thinking of midsized cities where I actually think it is feasible to have it, you know, a functioning sort of more traditional transit system. I think actually that work has been done, which raises another question about masterplans and sort of following through with the plans that we have in the first place and not throwing that sort of, that whole innovation out the window as well. But yeah, I think the room is there, you know, and I guess coming back to that question about the role for the feds, I mean, some of that is about renegotiating the political arrangement. Absolutely. But aside from that, it’s also, again, it’s about what we do with the funding. It’s about, you know, stable funding for some of these pieces, conditional funding in some cases, right? So are we meeting climate targets, for example? You know, is it sort of some of those other pieces that come into, you know, into municipal responsibility that could actually be tied to as a condition, some of that federal funding? And I think, you know, if you’re talking about housing, but maybe on transit as well. Framing some of that funding so that it does support innovation so that it’s not just sort of core, you know, the federal on the housing piece, it’s not just about building more, but about actually incentivizing that level of innovation, about incentivizing the connective tissue piece so that if you’re doing housing and you’re doing it in a way that is also a climate win, for example, that’s pushing on densification and reducing sprawl. There’s an extra win there or there’s something tied to that. So I think, yeah, absolutely. I think innovation has its place in all of those spaces and there is a role for the feds. It’s just, it’s got to be sort of framed that way.
Mary W. Rowe [00:33:52] I mean, the thing is, Shauna, you’re a pro at this in terms of sorry, and in the climate world, I think you’ve had to be that sector has had to be much more, you couldn’t wait for governance to change. You had to get moving. And so I’m wondering if there’s something about flexible governance, you know, we get a little hung up. Oh, no, no jurisdiction jurisdiction. But during COVID, we couldn’t really. We just had to start solving. Do you think climate is going to give us the same impetus where these kinds of more ad hoc issues specific, put a governance structure together, don’t fuss too much about the Constitution or anything else. I mean, it looks like you can do it.
Shauna Sylvester [00:34:30] I do believe that climate is a game changer here. This isn’t, if we don’t have a lot of time to get this right and cities are on the front edge of this. So that is a game changer. But I also am really excited to see the kinds of tools that we’ve been working on. The center’s been around for 20 years trying to figure out how to do this well. On transportation I feel like we’ve finally got a confidence building table. We’ve learned how to do visioning, working together, people who hate each other, normally inside the room together, really working through land use, planning through the lens of health, equity, affordability, resilience.
Mary W. Rowe [00:35:09] Like somehow the outcomes, the outcomes you allowed them to work together.
Shauna Sylvester [00:35:12] To be really clear. Like what happened is we existed for six years to really help the mayors advance their vision on a livable region. We’ve actually had in Metro Vancouver 60 years of consensus on what that, you know, we were modes connected through transit in a sea of green, which is our agricultural land reserve amidst a sea of blue, which is our mountains and our oceans. So that was our generally our vision. Well, it started when you started to get populist mayors who got in because they didn’t want transit or they didn’t, they would get in on a transit issue. And so they asked us to reconvene. So we actually hold a table. I’ve been convening it for eight years with the likes of the Mayors Council, Translink, the act of transportation people, all the BIAs, the environmental. People that are screaming and yelling at each other outside of the room. But inside of the room, it’s a love affair. They really look at how can we, how can we support? So right now, there’s a big ask on transit. I took a look at the ask and said, Oh no, it’s it’s crying, the sky is falling again. Uh-uh. Transit is essential. It’s absolutely been part of our whole response and recovery. Let’s start and lead with how critical transportation is to the way in which the federal government has responded to this campaign.
Mary W. Rowe [00:36:34] Okay, so relationships, connective tissue trying some stuff.
Shauna Sylvester [00:36:38] Trust. Education.
Mary W. Rowe [00:36:38] Trust.
Shauna Sylvester [00:36:38] Learning together. So that’s one piece. The cities and COP 26 was a completely different. It wasn’t a confidence building. It was about strategy. It’s how do we go into Glasgow together and how do we get and speak together? How do cities get on the agenda of the climate, national determined contributions or whatever we’re going to say as Canada and Glasgow and whatever is going to come out of that well, we got into the agreement. You couldn’t really go anywhere in the blue zone in Glasgow without seeing cities. It worked. And all of a sudden, for the first time, you’ve got all these cities, intermediary organizations going, Oh my God, there’s such a clarity in what we’re saying. And you see that going into this federal budget?
Mary W. Rowe [00:37:26] Mhmm.
Shauna Sylvester [00:37:26] So these processes work, and I just want to come back to something Nigel said. It’s the processes of innovation. Who’s got a voice at that table? And how are we shifting the traditional siloed policy work that we’ve done to something completely different, which is much more horizontal and as you said, Mary. Not worrying about the jurisdictions. We got something we got to do here together. Let’s try and do it through deep listening and hearing where we all fit within the ecosystem. Map it, you’re doing this, you’re good at this, you’re doing this. So then let’s move together.
Mary W. Rowe [00:38:03] Then move together. Yeah. This horizontal thing nobody knows. Nobody does this well. Everybody wants to try I think the horizontal piece, we’re learning. We’re going to try to wrap in the next couple of minutes because I’m conscious that we have people that are still with us six hours later. And they want to break. Obviously, Anneke over to you and then maybe to Nigel. And then last word will probably be you, Nigel. So go ahead, Anneke.
Anneke Smit [00:38:26] I’ll just make two final comments. I mean, the one is, I think, you know, as we come into an Ontario, an election year for municipalities and province as well, of course, you know, part of the piece, I think coming back to that participatory budgeting, public engagement piece is just, you know, the other elephant in the room is the low level of public engagement, the low level of public consciousness still. Even though I think it is changing about what cities do and how important a role they have on all of these issues, climate is a classic example of that. It’s maybe the biggest one, you know, but pandemic, we saw it too. And you know, DEI what inclusive place making looks like, how we how we fit together in our communities. All of this is at the city level. And yet we have the lowest level of voter engagement of any level of government,.
Mary W. Rowe [00:39:12] Which is weird.
Anneke Smit [00:39:12] So there’s that. And then I just again coming back to that accountability piece masterplans is something and I hear this from my students, my law students all the time. This has become a real preoccupation for them. How do we, how do we not only do the right stuff and make the right plans, but how do we actually hold the feet to the fire on implementation? So those plans weren’t just aspirational? And how do we fund it? Of course, that’s where the higher levels of government could come in. But ultimately, those people around the table have got to be held to account for the plans to.
Mary W. Rowe [00:39:44] And I know that Noah’s capturing all this because he’s back with us tomorrow. We’re going to try to build this nest together. But accountability and also you talked about conditionality earlier. So and how do we actually reconcile those. Great. Nigel last thought from you?
Nigel Jacob [00:39:59] You know, the one, one or two things they heard that concern me in the beginning of the day. More than once, I think we heard sort of euphemistically the notion of getting back to normal. Right? So we’re going to do this and we snap back and roll like I just want to say, like, we’ve got to throw that out like normal didn’t work for anybody. Normal was garbage already. And so we have to be, it has to be about the future. And that means right, you and I have talked about this before, like science fiction writers…
Mary W. Rowe [00:40:26] Ministry of the Future.
Nigel Jacob [00:40:27] Right, exactly. Let’s do that. The other thought that I think we should, would be useful and is the collaboration across cities. You know, so is obviously geographically. Cities are used to competing right with Toronto and in Ottawa and so on. But I think we have to get beyond that. Like we have far more to learn from each other. And when we approach these problems as a bloc, as a grouping, as we’re talking about, you know COP and those things is like we need to find a way to forge alliances that are long lasting across cities and across countries. But I think, you know, nation states, do we need that anymore? Like we need to be redefined if we’re going to be collaborating across cities. I think we need to find a way for global north city to connect the global south cities and to realize we all literally do. This is where the rubber meets the road. And so.
Mary W. Rowe [00:41:23] And that’s certainly been one of the recovery. Yeah, that’s been one of the extraordinary schisms we’ve seen around vaccine production and vaccine distribution. The chasm between the global north and global south. Next one, that’s where we need to go. All right. Well, listen, thanks gang, we’re going to be back tomorrow. I want just to say a shout out to all of, there’s several hundred people still on here. Thank you for staying on with us. We hope you have a good evening. We’re always appreciative of our super participants. And Paul McKinnon, you’ve been a prize because you’ve been on every session and active in the chat from Halifax. Thank you so much for being such a keen contributor to where we’re going and the future of downtowns. We’ll be back tomorrow at noon Eastern and just exactly what you were suggesting, Nigel. And we’re going to talk about cities working together because we’re going to be joined by Mike Savage, the mayor of Halifax, who’s the chair of the Big City Mayors Caucus, and Carole Saab, the CEO of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities. And we’re going to start our session talking about that kind of collaboration of municipal governments and what the role of municipal leadership is. And then we go from that in discussions with people working in city government around economic development, then the chambers of commerce all talking about how they’re collaborating across their different jurisdictions for economic recovery. And then we have sessions on culture and animation in public space, and it’s just going to be another great afternoon or have or morning afternoon, depending on your time zone. So thanks for joining us today. Thanks to all the producers at CUI of which there are many, many, many in the background working. You know, who are you’re great. And we’ll see you back at noon eastern, 9:00 Pacific,1:00 Atlantic Time, 10:00 Mountain Time, and 11:00 o’clock Central time. How’s that? OK, see you tomorrow! Thanks very, very much, everybody. And you can go to our website if you want to see the program for tomorrow. It’s at canurb.org/citysummit, and we’ll see you when we come back. Thanks, Aneeke, Shuna, Nigel, Noah. Great to see you. Bye.
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From Canadian Urban Institute: You can find transcripts and recordings of today’s and all our webinars at https://canurb.org/citytalk
06:31:34 Canadian Urban Institute: We are closing day one with Policy and Investment Leadership Implications with Nigel Jacob, Senior Fellow, Burnes Centre for Global Impact, Northeastern University, and Emeritus Co-Chair and Co-Founder, Mayor’s Office of New Urban Mechanics; Anneke Smit, Director and Associate Professor, Centre for Cities, Faculty of Law, University of Windsor; Shauna Sylvester, Executive Director, Simon Fraser University’s Morris J. Wosk.
06:31:47 Adriana Dossena: Thank you thanks you!
06:32:07 Philippa Von Ziegenweidt: The energy in this library discussion is so inspiring!
06:32:38 Karen Dar Woon: 👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼
06:33:21 Canadian Urban Institute: Nigel Jacob is the Co-founder of the Mayor’s Office of New Urban Mechanics, a civic innovation incubator and R&D Lab within Boston’s City Hall. Nigel’s work is about making urban life better via innovative, people-oriented applications of technology and design. Prior to joining the City of Boston in 2006, Nigel worked in a series of technology start-ups in the Boston area. This ground-breaking work has earned Nigel a number of awards including being named a Public Official of the year in 2011 by Governing Magazine, a Whitehouse Champion of Change and the Tribeca Disruptive Innovation award for 2012.
06:33:36 Canadian Urban Institute: Anneke Smit is Associate Professor in the Faculty of Law and the inaugural Director of the Windsor Law Centre for Cities. She is the co-lead of the Government of Canada-funded Cities and Climate Action Forum. Prior to joining Windsor Law she held a Lectureship at the School of Law, University of Reading (UK). Dr. Smit’s research, teaching and community engagement focus on urban planning and municipal law, and global refugee law and policy. Dr. Smit has worked on domestic and global refugee law and policy with government, intergovernmental and non-governmental organisations in Canada, the Balkans and the South Caucasus. She has been the recipient of the Windsor Law Students Law Society (SLS) Faculty Award, the Windsor-Essex Local Immigration Partnership Welcoming Communities Award, the University of Windsor Alumni Association Excellence in Mentoring Award, and the UWindsor Humanities Research Group Fellowship.
06:33:44 Shauna Sylvester, SFU Wosk Centre for Dialogue, she/her: Our Reimagining City Centre reports from Metro Vancouver https://www.sfu.ca/dialogue/news/events/past-events/rocc.html
06:34:07 Canadian Urban Institute: Shauna Sylvester is the Executive Director of Simon Fraser University’s Morris J. Wosk Centre for Dialogue, a Professor, Professional Practice in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, a proud mother and a relationship focused leader. For over 30 years she has served as a convenor and facilitator to hundreds of citizen, community and stakeholder dialogues at the local, national and global level. She has led several complex global dialogues on climate and peace, dozens of national dialogues on democracy, foreign policy and energy and hundreds of dialogues locally on urban issues such as transportation and housing. As a social entrepreneur, Shauna is the Co-founder and first Executive Director of five Pan-Canadian initiatives: the SFU Public Square, Renewable Cities, Carbon Talks, Canada’s World and IMPACS – the Institute for Media, Policy and Civil Society, a media and democracy organization that operated in Canada and in conflict and post-conflict zones around the world. Shauna has been recognized as an SFU
06:34:20 Canadian Urban Institute: Noah Zon has built a career as a public policy leader in think tanks, not-for-profits, and the civil service. Before co-founding Springboard, Noah achieved concrete policy changes to reduce poverty in Canada as the Director of Policy and Research at the Maytree Foundation. Noah led the largest research stream at the Mowat Centre, a public policy think tank at the University of Toronto, developing policy agendas around technology, economic development, fiscal policy, and the social safety net. As a public servant, Noah worked in the Cabinet Office for the Ontario government, where he worked on climate change policy and intergovernmental relations.
06:36:27 Robert Plitt: The library example, office conversions in multifunctional space, reimagining churches all converge around underlying characteristic of resilience – adaptive and multi-functional spaces –
06:38:40 Laura Wall: “integrated mobility services” not just “transit mobility”, heritage designations usually only mean “colonial heritage”, homelessness the equivalent of the high school dance, libraries are social infrastructure
06:39:57 Robert Plitt: We can reimagine and redesign our downtowns as resilient systems – by creating the interpreted enabling policy, finance and governance arrangements
06:43:30 Elizabeth McAllister: Social infrastructure is about creating space where people meet to do things the love. The in-between of buildings is as important as civic buildings. How to we nudge people to meet each other and form connections.
06:43:40 Cameron Charlebois: Why doesn’t Canada have a Housing and Urban Development ministry. Given the proportion of Canadian citizenry who live in cities, the federal government needs to get involvement in the whole range of urban issues. This does not challenge the provincial jurisdiction over cities as administrations, but it does confirm urbanization as a national issue – from climate change to mobility to diversity and inclusion.
06:44:11 paul mackinnon: Amen, Cameron. If not now, with this gov’t, then when?!
06:44:24 Elizabeth McAllister: We had a department of Urban Affairs in the 70’s the provinces killed it.
06:45:27 paul mackinnon: True, but that was before the inroads FCM made with the Feds. Now they deal directly with cities, but it’s not done in a holistic way. The Feds deal with urban issues, but I think it’s safe to say there is no urban agenda or plan.
06:46:39 Shauna Sylvester, SFU Wosk Centre for Dialogue, she/her: Reposting by request: Our Reimagining City Centre reports from Metro Vancouver https://www.sfu.ca/dialogue/news/events/past-events/rocc.html
06:47:20 Marcy Burchfield: Absolutely–how does flexibility and pilots become the norm for cities
06:47:30 paul mackinnon: When Amarjeet Sohi was the Min of Infrastructure, he was asked if he felt a Fed Ministry of Urban Affairs/Cities was needed, and he said no (on a CUI panel). I wonder if he feels differently now that he’s a mayor. We should have asked him this morning 🙂
06:48:12 Elizabeth McAllister: Paul: we need better Fed-Prov-Municipal Partnerships on just about every issue from crime prevention, housing, traffic safety, health care. Our city wants to force seniors into one bedroom apartments and feds are working on aging in place.
06:50:35 paul mackinnon: Elizabeth, agreed. But the provincial governments seem very uninterested in downtowns. (They do care about some of these individual issues).
06:50:54 Mark van Elsberg: The learnings of Covid as mentioned , bike lanes and Patios.. are just a few. We keep talking bout reusing buildings and redeveloping site, but the physical fabric cant be forgotten. If we increase densities without rebuilding and reimagining our streets (our spaces in between) we will fail . This not a cost the Cities can upfront. The benefactor to great streets is actually NOT transportation services. If is our larger City, our Province and our nation that benefits from great Cities. this trickles to main streets and smaller towns and Cities
06:50:58 Shauna Sylvester, SFU Wosk Centre for Dialogue, she/her: Sarah Shulman’s InWithForward does important work on ethnographies in the citiies
06:51:57 Kay Matthews: Especially as municipalities will want to grab as much cash as possible, I imagine patio fees will be reintroduced.
06:52:29 Kay Matthews: The City of Toronto has Innovation Funds direct to BIAs
06:53:01 Jamie Van Ymeren: Do we think zoning/permits by default could be here to stay>
06:53:20 Catherine Deegan: City of Toronto just made their CAFE T.O. program more permanent and very well received by businesses, fees are slated for 2023
06:53:30 Mark van Elsberg: Patios should be incentivized not taxed. They are what makes people go out, slows down traffic and makes us reimagine our city of the future
06:53:34 Shauna Sylvester, SFU Wosk Centre for Dialogue, she/her: We have the LC3 – Low Carbon City Centers that our centre for innovation in investing in climate change reductions through loan loss reserves; in Vancouver we call it the Zero Emission Innovation Centre – it allows us to leverage funds across many sectors; program related investments, credit unions, foundation foundation etc.
06:54:12 James Tischler: Pilots should not be ‘special’ considerations, but instead enabled by-right and primary-focus across geographies and mixes…
06:54:20 paul mackinnon: One approach is a comprehensive Downtown Recovery Plan, which the 3 levels of gov’t then agree to jointly fund/execute. But create the plan first, before deciding who pays for what. That could be a pretty tangible follow-up to this very summit.
06:54:37 Jayne Engle: To be a bit provocative, most solutions proposed are within the structures, logics and systems that we have. What new institutions, governance, financing and ownership models are needed that would create not only resilient but also regenerative, radically inclusive downtowns?
06:55:26 Shauna Sylvester, SFU Wosk Centre for Dialogue, she/her: Time to have a fund for strengthening democracy in this country – we do it internationally but not in Canada and it is a clear issue; need new forms of engagement – alternatives to public hearings
06:55:44 Gordon Price: Biggest innovator in the pandemic that has had an impact on downtowns has probably been Amazon.
06:56:20 Elizabeth McAllister: Stats Can has the demographic data. We did a study on our community which conveniently is covered exactly by Stats Can. We were shocked at the level of poverty and have been working hard on addressing it since! Not easy …took years to have our poverty acknowledged by funders and the City. Stats Ca should help communities to use their data.
06:56:21 Mark van Elsberg: tactical urbanism is key to making change. It paint the future. and changes driver behaviour This allows incremental change by the change agents (redevelopments) Green standards and incentives require sustainable boulevards
06:56:35 James Tischler: Systems-focus instead of object(s)-focus…
06:57:02 paul mackinnon: Case in point in Halifax: City needed to step up and pay for housing (provincial mandate), so are now balking at supporting a provincial art gallery. But both things are good for downtown. These sorts of turf wars are not helpful.
06:58:50 Catherine Deegan: 100 % agreed Shauna
06:59:09 Nancy Tissington: Paul you are 100% correct
07:01:06 Shauna Sylvester, SFU Wosk Centre for Dialogue, she/her: climate is a game changer – who do residents look to when the floods, fires or heat dome come – cities – there has to be a way for cities to renegotiate their relationship with the federal government
07:02:24 Mark van Elsberg: Cities need to empower the community experts with skin in the game (BIAs and Community groups) creating the visions, supporting objectives of all levels of govt and identifying and engaging the local partners to build each piece of this puzzle. The FED DEV recovery program was for Shovel ready projects. Noone has shovel ready unless they have funding.. Communities need funding to create the shovel ready designs, find funding partners and once organized there needs to be a threshold where higher levels of govt fund the gap.
07:03:46 Kay Matthews: There is only one taxpayer
07:04:00 Shauna Sylvester, SFU Wosk Centre for Dialogue, she/her: Innovation on democracy – change the public hearings; citizen assemblies; citizen juries; Oregon citizens review panel – these are existing models
07:04:12 Mark van Elsberg: Model it on waterfront Toronto and make sure design excellence and equity is also part of the formula
07:05:05 Kathy McLaughlin: Mark makes some excellent points! Funding drives a lot of this work… it would be great to get funding to develop the projects rather than needing to have them ready in case funding becomes available.
07:05:11 Shauna Sylvester, SFU Wosk Centre for Dialogue, she/her: we have a existing transportation/land use planning table – Moving in a Livable Region – confidence building space for new thinking, innovative ways of working, visioning across the region
07:05:54 Shauna Sylvester, SFU Wosk Centre for Dialogue, she/her: Check out the City of Burnaby’s You’re Home. Your Voice. Process – new way of approaching housing – with residents – great innovation and responsive
07:06:04 Sarah Vereault: re: Housing, various levels of govt need to provide both carrots to incentive private sector to build affordable housing and sticks to require a certain percentage of development to be affordable – realizing these things are already in place, but clearly not in the right amounts/configurations for the whole country to be facing a housing crisis
07:09:20 Gordon Price: In Vancouver, indigenous development is one of the greatest opportunities for innovation and non-traditional responses. MST Development + private sector developers – quite a combo.
07:10:59 Kristen Shima: 🥰
07:11:14 Mark van Elsberg: We need a rating system which quantifies how our ROWs , our streets impact health, climate,safety, equity etc. We need a menu on how to go from a D to an A. We need a mechanism to incentivize other partners along the edges, and the utilities down below to participate in the rebuild. This needs to come from above, through legislation and permission. Once there are visons that can be properly assessed, all levels of govt must play a part in the cost and success
07:12:06 Shauna Sylvester, SFU Wosk Centre for Dialogue, she/her: I think they are living it now so climate is coming up in terms of understanding and engagement
07:13:28 Mark van Elsberg: Back Better Build
07:13:36 Jayne Engle: Mayor’s Offices for the Future
07:13:36 Colette Murphy: Wise words to support making big change from Alex Himelfarb https://afhimelfarb.wordpress.com/2021/11/07/making-big-change/
07:13:49 Mary: Increase in Population will support efficient transit system. Attracting people and talent to the City is key
07:14:14 Catherine Deegan: across cities/states/globally both vertically and horizontally
07:14:38 paul mackinnon: Great panel!
07:14:47 Laura Wall: thank you everybody!
07:14:52 Sarah Vereault: thank you! great sessions.
07:14:54 Canadian Urban Institute: Thank you everyone!!!
07:14:55 Kate Fenske: Thanks all! Especially Paul. 😉
07:14:57 Jenna Davidson: Thank you so much for the fantastic and inspiring day!
07:14:57 Shauna Sylvester, SFU Wosk Centre for Dialogue, she/her: Thanks for the great discussion especially on chat
07:14:59 Rebecca Kaiser: Thank you so much for all of this.
07:15:02 Tzu Chen Wang: thank you!
07:15:04 Maryam Mahvash: Thanks everyone!
07:15:17 Kay Matthews: 🙌🏻
07:15:18 Canadian Urban Institute: For everyone who was asking, here’s a link to our “cities” playlist: https://open.spotify.com/playlist/2FYY7rZ9QiTZ8opbfTQyWA?si=r8LgYX6JQ2yCpoDn6rMmqA&fbclid=IwAR0ewKrR7UX7Uoqv24mDlQN_jZ_bUVysDKY-7HFGjYofpLBkKCjniJkIK1E&nd=1
07:15:24 Sophia Symons: Thanks to all the panelists for the great perspectives!!
07:15:27 Shauna Sylvester, SFU Wosk Centre for Dialogue, she/her: I love CUI’s programming – fantastic!
07:15:29 Catherine Deegan: Great sessions all day – thank you, looking forward to tomorrow
07:15:30 Canadian Urban Institute: Send your songs to us!
07:15:36 Jane MacCarthy: Thanks—looking forward to tomorrow!
07:15:37 Donald McConnell: Great stuff! Thanks.
07:15:37 Janice Campbell: thanks and CHEERS folks … very informative day.
07:15:40 Voncelle Volté: ⚡ Thank you, for another amazing summit. 🌻🌻🌻
07:15:48 Marcy Burchfield: Great job CUI staff!! & Mary
07:15:55 Craig Walker: Thanks panelists!
07:16:01 Nancy Tissington: Thank you !!
07:16:58 Sean Carter: Thanks for a great discussion!
07:17:59 Mary W Rowe, she/her, Canada’s Urban Institute/IUC: thanks all!
07:19:02 Tom Yarmon: excellent presentations and discussion today. Thank you Mary, CIU and panelists. Mind opening. Ty