Main Street Action Week: Planning and Urban Design for Pandemic Recovery

Joining CUI host Ariana Holt for our final session of Main Street Action Week: Planning and Urban Design for Pandemic Recovery – are presenter, Rob Leblanc President of Fathom Studio; Jill Robertson, Principal of Landscape Architecture at Dialog Design; Hazel Borys, President of PlaceMakers; Jason Syvixay Principal Planner at the City of Edmonton; and Eric Lucic, Divisional Lead of Regional Planning for City of Halifax. This event is co-presented with Fathom Studio.

5 Key

A roundup of the most compelling ideas, themes and quotes from this candid conversation

1. Main Streets as labs for testing strategies

Main Streets, according to Jason Syvixay, have the chance during the pandemic to become labs for testing ideas and our assumptions through tactical experiments, some of which are highlighted in Planning and Urban Design to Bring Back Main Street. The experiments can be for implementing short term change for physical distancing during the pandemic, but also have the possibility to continue post-pandemic, as long as we carefully monitor impacts and allow flexibility to adjust in the process. Particular attention should be paid in monitoring to who benefits and who doesn’t…and look to adjust to ensure equity for those impacted.

2. Centering community voices and participation in city building

There is a need to think critically about what ‘designing Main Streets for all’ means, and inviting community stakeholders, business owners and residents to be part of the city building process. This starts from the designing the questions, framing the issues and thinking about the research strategies. A recent example from the BBMS report is ‘Main Street Block Parties’ which include the community in identifying possible improvements and collectively exploring solutions with planners and the city. Jason reminds us that during this time of civil uprising and reckoning, it is crucial to acknowledge the racial and social shortcomings of main streets and work towards recovery through participation.

3. Consider Form before use (Form-based development codes) as one approach

Hazel Borys and others are fans of the implementation of form-based development codes. These prioritize form over use to allow for a mixture of compatible uses and character in urban development, resulting in more gentle densities. Most importantly, form-based codes have been a globally successful strategy which provides more certainty to stakeholders for planning and activates future development.

4. The need for ‘Urban acupuncture’, Secondary Planning and ancillary dwelling and commercial units

As policymaking catches up to the uncertainties of the future, the practice of ‘urban acupuncture’ or ‘code hacks’ are promising approaches for Jill Robertson. We see a rise in secondary residential suites and Jill suggests the possibility of commercial secondary suites to allow property owners to generate additional income or possibly let others set up shop. Rob Leblanc suggests secondary planning for main streets should be solidified, building on municipal land use by-laws and examination of areas through a finer lens. This includes parks and open space plans, signage, and wayfinding strategies etc., which are short term and do not require changing zoning long-term, which is expensive and time consuming. It also allows developers and landowners to better understand how the public investment will leverage new private investment opportunities.

5. A good city plan is at the heart of recovery

Edmonton is just finalizing its municipal development plan. A good plan should be the reference for recovery  for an increasingly uncertain future. Partnership across the municipality, community, business, planners and designers is crucial. Municipalities should be creating the policy environment which encourages private investment, while designers and planners should be educating clients about these spaces and streamlining good, comprehensive city building at both urban and rural scales.

Full Panel

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 with “transcription” in the subject line.

Ariana Holt [00:00:22] Everyone, I’m Ariana Holt, I’m a senior planner at Canadian Urban Institute and a project director for Bring Back Main Street. I’m very excited to be here with all of you and Fathom Studio and our wonderful panelists to talk about urban planning and design for Main Street pandemic recovery. This is our last of four discussions on Main Streets this week. So thanks to everyone who has been joining us throughout the week, and hello to anyone who’s doing for the first time. I’d like to start by saying that I’m in Toronto, the traditional territory of many nations, including the Mississaugas of the Credit, the Annishnabec, the Chippewa, the Haudenosaunee and the Wendat peoples, and this is now home to many diverse First Nations, Inuit and Metis peoples from across Turtle Island. We recognize that Toronto is covered by treaty 13, signed with the Mississaugas of the Credit, the Williams Treaty signed with multiple Annishnabec nations. We are mindful of a history of broken treaties and the urgent need to work continuously towards reconciliation. I’m grateful to have the opportunity to live and work in the community on this territory. I invite you to think about the people who have historically lived in the place you call home and how we might work towards reconciliation in meaningful ways. Now for some a few housekeeping items we’re recording this session and we’ll post it on our website in the coming week. We encourage you to use the chat function. Please toggle the option to all panelists and attendees so we can all see your comments. And while you’re there. Feel free to say hello and tell us where you’re from, ask questions and talk about what’s happening on the main streets. We’ll try to get to some of the questions in the chat if there is time. Keep in mind that we do post the recording of the webinar together with the chats and anything you post in the chat will go along with the recording.


Ariana Holt [00:02:12] Early in the spring, CUI embarked on the Bring Back Main Street project, which, if you’re here, you’ve probably heard of. I’d like to mention that last week we launched our action report, which offers a set of specific proposals to sustain and bolster Main Street through the pandemic and beyond and encourage you to check that out on our website. The report, which we’re calling ‘In it together’, builds on extensive consultation and research conducted by CUI and its partners, including Fathom Studio, in a series of solution briefs and toolkits. Yeah, as I said, we invite you to look at these documents on our website and adopt some of the actions with partners and collaborators in your community. OK, so time to get on with this session. In just a moment I’ll pass over the mike to Rob Block from Fathom studio, who will be giving a brief overview of their solution brief called Planning and Urban Design to bring back Main Street. Then we have four panelists who are going to speak to what these solutions mean for their communities. Fathom Studio is an interdisciplinary planning and design firm based out of Halifax. Rob the president and director of planning at Fathom. I’d just like to say Rob’s a very patient man and he’s very knowledgeable on the subject, so we’re happy to have him speak to us today. And I’m not going to give a bio of our panelists because we’re going to post some information about them in the chat. But just so you know, we have Jill Robertson, who is principal of landscape architecture at Dialog based out of Edmonton Hazel Borys, who’s a managing partner from a firm called Pacemaker’s based out of Winnipeg. Jason. Jason Syvixay, hope I got that right, Jason. Principal planner from city of Edmonton. And Eric Lucic, the divisional leader of regional planning at city of Halifax. So, panelists, you can now turn off the mikes and your cameras. And Rob, would you mind sharing your screen now? We already did. Perfect.


Rob Leblanc [00:04:12] Well, thanks for the introduction, Ariana. And I did want to congratulate the Canadian Urban Institute on this initiative. It’s been well needed and we certainly appreciate the opportunity to work with you on this. And I also want to just give our special thanks to to Eric Lucic, who was part of this Devin Lake who is director of planning in Wolfville and T.J McGuire from Develop Nova Scotia and the reviewers, Ariana and Paul McKinnon and Ken Kelly, who contributed to the content in there. I’m going to take a brief 15 minutes and chat about a topic which we are currently drinking from a firehose on over the last little bit. The report was primarily assembled over the summer. And things are changing daily. But without getting into too much detail today, we’re gonna skim the surface on just a high level on some of the topics. The report’s really broken down into three main chapters. I’ll walk through some of those sections to give you a high level overview. Just recognizing that any solution that really talks about planning and policy are normally multi-year endeavors. And we’ve seen the rapid honest with which the provinces and municipalities have responded to this. And we are encouraged to think that that same pace will continue to identify new opportunities for planning and design. And as you go through the topic, we have prepared a list of Flipboard site where we’re flipping different topics and cityShare. And I would just like to shout out to CUI for the opportunities they’re providing to allow communities to share their experience with planning and design. And overall, we recognize there is no one-size-fits-all solution for Main Street. We recognize that every main street has its own peculiarities and qualities that make it unique. So it’s a tough topic to discuss generally about what we think are solutions to bring back Main Street. But we do think that that this is really an accelerator of trends that are currently have been out there for the last little bit rather than a fork in the road. So we see Covid as a as a tipping point for many modern planning and design ideas that we’re either not convenient or not a priority upto now. Without getting into some detail, we did try to break the main street down into into three topologies, one being a business district, Main Street, which I think in many cases has suffered the most because of the reliance on tourists and office workers and theaters and all those sorts of activities that that bring bringing life to that main street. As we go down in scale the neighborhood Main Street, you know, benefits from the local campaigns, from a lot of the business owners actually owning businesses and properties on the street. So they have a greater say in how rapid change can can affect Main Street. And then the more rural municipalities, which don’t have, in many cases, bids or organizational contacts with municipalities, and they have to deal more closely with provincial organizations or transportation to get things done. So really, the first six months focused on bringing people outdoors, expanding sidewalks and providing relief for with sidewalk patios and cafes, temporary parks, tactical urban installations. And the next six months we see a move into more policy and planning issues which will address affordable housing, greater density near our main streets. And so as we move into Chapter two of the report, which is focuses on the larger scale issues of planning policy, we suggest that a number of initiatives, some of them are we classify as quick wins. And those are ones that we think can be done relatively rapidly. So this was one that was actually held in Charlottetown a couple of days ago, and it was designed to bring people together, the business community and the public in a series of workshops to look at, you know, what they could do to improve their main streets and the areas around the heritage districts. And we held a walkabout through downtown with Kathleen Hennessey here in this picture, had the media involved and had a whole series of engagement sessions asking people what they love and maybe not about their community and Main Street, what things they would like to do on the main street and what their priorities might be. One of the other quick win initiatives and some are are a smaller scale, would be looking at Winter City placemaking. You know, we’re going to continue to rely on the outdoors throughout the winter. And places like Edmonton and Saskatoon have drafted winter safety guidelines with all kinds of different insights that I think are valuable for us to learn. Then you look at places like Montreal that have been doing this for a long, long time and have some really great examples to follow. For those of you that have facade incentive programs, these are usually done either through the municipality or in partnership with regional grants of the federal government that can work. Eventually, government can provide funding, but effectively it allows the municipalities to for every dollar invested, it usually returns about three dollars in spending. And so it allows us to to activate the exterior of our main streets. This is really a time where a secondary planning needs to come into full play and secondary planning is really building on the municipal plan and the land use bylaws to look at more detailed areas in much more detail. And we think that now is the time, with everything that’s changing to start to look at the secondary plans, which include streetscape plans or signage, wayfinding strategies, parks and open space plans. But just a real opportunity for for that to happen over the next short term. Complete Streets plans are also going to be more and more important. And we’re seeing kind of tactical installations, which I’ll talk about in a second, but either on a smaller scale or we’re looking at the scale of a block or it could be a whole district in this case. This is the of Cogswell District plan, which is planning for the removal of about 10 acres of land, the 1960s overpass structure and the real allocation of that land to new downtown new Main Street uses.


Rob Leblanc [00:12:13] We also talk in the report about a revival of the Main Street Canada program. And that was a program from the 1980s to the 1990s. Many of you will remember that it was rolled out about 70 communities, 90 million dollars was spent. And it was estimated at that time that every dollar spent generated about 30 private investment. And so significant opportunity, I think, for that program to find new footing today and maybe build on the new federal Canada Healthy Communities Initiative, which is providing up to 30 million dollars in funding to support communities transitioning through Covid. Parks and open space, we all know that we’re 19 times more likely to get Covid indoors. And so we’ve seen this switch out to outdoor spaces. This is an area on the Halifax waterfront that had been landbanked as a long term for a parking lot, as a future development site. But you see these pop up uses. This is the salt yard and better days when people were able to be closer together. But a host of new uses, retail, open space activity centers, events, all those things start to come to life in what were previously just parking lots. We’re also seeing that along street edges as we see a decrease in traffic to our main streets. It gives the opportunity to reallocate some of either the parking spaces or even road changing. Looking at single road changes and new tactical installations, that could be the complete street or, could be just a half street as the streets moved from two way to one way. Again, other pictures of just parking lots that are being converted to new urban park uses. Filling some of the void on Main Street. Telling your history through parks. So, in fact, we’re talking about interpretive planning and interpretive design. As we look at more staycations and people are trying to rediscover their own neighborhoods and relearned the history of the neighborhoods, integrating these stories into our park designs without using interpretive panels. This is Fort Needham Park in Halifax that tells the history of the Halifax explosion without any interpretive panels and facts. Everything is embedded in the landscape works. The community knows a lot about the story. And so tourists are finding out the history of it through talking with local people. We also think in Canada, there’s an opportunity to explore more creative solutions for funding of parks. And you only have to look as far as the Central Park, which raises up to seventy two million dollars a year, over a billion dollars in its lifetime through the Parks Conservancy Group and through some creative, more creative exploration of tax laws in Canada. We think that these conservation organizations could be, well, ideally suited to to our main street parks. Oh, sorry, it slipped. Zoning reforms, the report goes into quite some detail about density done right and some of the work that Ryerson has done over the last little bit about distributed density, bringing better forms of density to our main street rather than concentrating it. And boy, keeps on to go back to that page. Inclusionary zoning policies. So we’re seeing what was a problem in 2019 with two hundred eighty three thousand on a waiting list for affordable housing in Canada. About two thirds of those had been on the list for over two years. Is even that much more pronounced? Every city, every community needs to be looking at affordable housing, either through incentivizing developers to include a greater proportion of affordable units and new residential developments, or up zoning land and then using some of the the upper zone to put into funds for either using a bonus rate structure where that money is put aside for new affordable housing initiatives. The use of form based codes in cities as well to being able to bribe developers and the community with certainty about what developments will be permitted in areas. And again, Halifax, Charlottetown, some other cities have looked at implementing form based codes to really streamline how a development happens. It usually requires much more investment on upfront on the part of the developer, but it creates much more certainty in the process. I just wanted to end with a few of the physical design interventions that we’re seeing, these usually happened in the first six months of it. We’re seeing road conversion projects. Just a quick snapshot of Argyle Street, which is a shared street initiative. It looked at initially classed as arts in Montreal and the work that they had done preparing shared streets. And this idea, which had its roots in Dutch forms of streetscape, has found root in places like Charlottetown that are looking at the opportunity to do these as well. So we’re seeing a lot more of these road conversions, lane narrowing, lane closures, one way street conversions on street parking removals, slow streets, road closures, transit oriented streets, and at least here in Halifax, I think a lot of those initiatives have come from the introduction of of strategic planning groups. So this is the combination of transportation planners, planners, landscape architects within municipal departments that are tasked with a more holistic view of streets, the re prioritization of streets which were originally for cars back to pedestrians. And we think that the the model that they’ve they’ve done in Halifax combining these different groups is one that can be learned from as well. Just lastly, to summarize, you know, some of these ideas will find root in in some of the larger CBD main streets, some of them are more applicable on more rural main streets. Some of them are rapid, some of them are medium term and others are long term. But I think the report provides a pretty good overview of these new planning approaches and new tactical approaches for getting things done. So we’ll we’ll leave it there. I’m interested for a deeper dive from the from the other panelists.


Ariana Holt [00:20:29] Excellent. Thanks, Rob. So many great ideas. OK, if I can ask the panelists to turn their mics and cameras back on. Hi everyone, Great. So I’d like to give each of the panelists an opportunity to respond to the presentation. I can ask each person to take about three minutes or so to share your reactions to the presentation. And then more specifically, which of the ideas do you have the most potential to support Main Street recovery based on what you’re seeing in your communities in your in your day to day work? So I’ll start. Just on my screen. Jill, you’re first.


Jill Robertson [00:21:11] I was hoping I wouldn’t be first, but I’m excited to be first. I was a really great presentation. I really appreciate the depth of analysis that Fathom and Rob have done. And I think looking at it from an urban scale to a rural scale is really important, because I think one of the challenges that we’re facing is that one solution doesn’t fit all communities. And looking at how the solutions can be tailored to be context specific is really the work that can be built on from from the design brief. You know, for me, what resonates a lot, and it’s not just because it’s actively snowing in Edmonton today, but it’s the winter cities opportunities. And I think it’s really been a blessing that the pandemic started as we were heading into the summer. And so we could go outside and expand the public realm and create more spaces together outside. And the challenge certainly, and that’s on top of my mind is how do we carry that energy and that activity and that focus on the public realm into the winter. And I have some Danish friends and they always say to me, there’s no such thing as bad weather. There’s just bad clothing, which is somewhat true. But I also think there’s bad urban design that can reinforce having bad clothing. And so how do we create spaces that encourage people to linger outside and, you know, hot chocolate, patio heaters, blanket. Certainly having the bravery of businesses to maintain those patio spaces open in the support of the municipality is going to be really key. But then I think from an urban design and planning point of view, we need to challenge the norm that you can’t be outside in the winter, because I think Canadians historically have been scared of that and really encourage people to step outside and enjoy those spaces in those places. And maybe the bike lanes become a freeze-way for skating or for cross-country skiing. I think just because the activities change in the winter doesn’t mean the spatial allocation should change. And I I’d love to see us continuing to give space that was previously dedicated to cars over to people so we can be outside and having fun throughout the next. Six or eight months, depending on where you live in Canada.


Ariana Holt [00:23:37] That’s great, thanks Jill. Eric you’re next on my screen.


Eric Lucic [00:23:42] Thanks, Arianna. Jill touched on a lot of good things, and Rob’s presentation had a large focus on Halifax. So I can reiterate a lot of what Rob shown here, the things that we’re doing. It’s it’s it’s fantastic to see how our municipality has responded. And that includes our political our political friends, our councilors very much in support. And very much one of the things that I would say with what has allowed us to be as progressive as we have been, as some of the flexibility that’s been given to us by council and otherwise to act on things and encouraging us to get there. And now we’re looking at a situation where what do we do as the winter comes along, just like Jill said. And so even today, we’re looking at how do we extend some of those specialty patios that are in the streets? How do we extend those through the winter? Can we. You know, what are the what are the requirements to do that because of snow clearing or otherwise where a lot of these patios rest some of the early hits for us. And I’d like to say that the Atlantic provinces have actually we fared fairly well through this weather. That’s lucky or otherwise. But, you know, some of the things the early hits to us were closing parks and things like that. So there’s no opportunity to go into parks. And then the impact, you’d see it on the streets where you’d have additional crowding. So the municipality responded by expanding streets or closing a few streets that it would allow people to get out and still participate and still get some fresh air. So there’s quite a bit happening. And again, Rob touched on many things. So I’d just like to, you know, just reiterate some of the great things are these specialty streets that we have here and some of the things like even small things, like waiving fees for for these patios to just encourage them to occur. Thank you.


Ariana Holt [00:25:34] Thanks. Winter we’ve being talking about on ongoing basis so maybe we’ll come back to that. Hazel, you’re next.


Hazel Borys [00:25:44] Great. I guess that means I should stop tweeting then. So, Rob, thank you so much for that beautiful and inspiring summary of your thoughts. It’s lovely to be in this space with all of you. And I think that I love that you have made it context sensitive and realizing that many of the solutions that you have proposed are very appropriate for some parts of cities and towns and make more sense based on where we are within that rural to urban spectrum. And with I would like maybe us to also think about which kinds of interventions work in the cities that don’t have those incredibly intact, beautiful main streets that you’re showing, the ones that have become more suburbanized over time. And I think that’s probably the next progression in your work. Probably. I love this sort of scorecard for the rapid medium term and long term based on if it’s a central business district Main Street, or a neighborhood Main Street, or rural Main Street. This typology is super interesting. And thanks for the amount of thought that went into that. I would love, however, for the first item under phase three, long term of undertaking zoning reform. I think the larger, more holistic reforms of, you know, rewriting an entire development bylaw. Certainly that’s a long term initiative. But I think those sort of code hacks and that sort of, you know, urban acupuncture that’s really required right now for cities and towns to become more resilient during however long we have left with Covid is really something I’d love to see for all of us under phase one rapid. So, you know, things like the Project for code reform or other sorts of incremental initiatives, like the lean code tool, all those sorts of documents help with looking at, you know, what we can do. And I realize so many cities have already done things like, you know, allowed outdoor eating and and and shopping and learning and worshiping and all of the entertainment. But how how else can we make it easier, especially as we progress to the winter? So I think that I think that that’s an ongoing dialog that I look forward to having with you.


Ariana Holt [00:28:38] And there’s a real tension between, you know, getting what I need to do and I start kind of thinking about that long term as well. I’m planning these things. Just take take a long time. Jason, you’re next.


Jason Syvixay [00:28:52] Sure. Well, happy Friday, everybody. And I wanted to give a big shout out to CUI for inviting me to participate in this panel. I deeply admire a lot of the folks who are on the panel. And I heard that there’s over 200 people that are tuning in. So big A plus for all of you for getting out of bed when it’s snowing outside. You know, we want to stay cozy and comfortable before I share some of my impressions. I do want to just acknowledge when that I’m fortunate to work and live in, which is treaty six territory in Edmonton, Alberta, which is the traditional meeting ground for many indigenous peoples, including Cree, Dene and a Saulteaux, Nikota Sioux and Blackfoot peoples. So I think overall the presentation was really fantastic. So really a great job to fathom. And Rob, I think it really paints the picture for why our main streets are important and and why and how investment in them can actually support revenue generation as well as cost savings. I think a lot of the ideas, though, you know, are inspirational. But I do think that for for many of us working in planning and designing and design, these are strategies that have been advocated for with communities for quite some time. But I think with Covid, we’ve really just seen an acceleration of a bit of an urgency to move forward with them with the intention and purpose. And, you know, we’ve heard the word pivot. And so that’s sort of the current city Zeitgeist of the moment. So how are our government shifting and governing differently? I think that, for the most part are desired destinations are the same. We want our main street who supports social connectedness. We want access and accessibility. We want local economic vitality. And we want a high quality public realm. But we’re really at a different, different starting point because of Covid. And so I think it’s important to recognize that and a document like this really is one of many in our toolbox that really helps to punctuate the business case and the rationale for moving forward. When I look at some of the actions and I haven’t gone through the document in totality, but hoping to do that over the weekend. But some of the actions that you referenced, Rob, in terms of the visioning block party, you know, reconverting our streets for Street-eries is having places for people to gather safely. You know, all of those to me really speak to this idea and this concept of the Main Street as being a living laboratory. Know that we say you know, we say our cities are labs. But I do think if we think about any place in our cities, you know, Main Streets are that opportunity to test our ideas and our assumptions, to see what works and what doesn’t. And it really is an invitation to everybody to really be mini scientists in their own communities. And so those actions just sort of reconvert space, really provide an opportunity for us to blow things up, you know, to see what what can be time to see what strategies we can refine. And so I think that’s one of the most exciting parts of this sort of opportunity. And sort of the silver lining of Covid is that we get to test things out. And if we think about, you know, you know, the laboratory. You know, I did my undergraduate degree in biochemistry. And, you know, there’s different roles and responsibilities in a lab. We have your principal researcher, investigator who’s helping to frame a question. You have your administrators who are inviting people to participate in the study. You have those who are actually facilitating the experiments. You have those who are collecting data. If those were analyzing the data and sort of collaboratively, you know, we’re really trying to see what works, what doesn’t. Trying to see if your findings support your questions. And I think just like a lab, we need to be conscious that our Main Street strategies might not work. And so it’s about going back to the drawing board and inviting participants to to be part of the conversation. The other point that I want to make is that, you know, as city builders, we constantly espouse building cities and main streets for everybody and for all. And I think that, you know, during this time of great civil uprising and reckoning, that we do acknowledge the racial and social shortcomings of our main streets and really think critically about what we mean when we say we’re designing Main Streets for all. So really thinking about that laboratory, you know, when we think about the principal research for investigator, who is that? Is it planners? Is it designers? Is it community? How do we invite community to be part of designing the question, framing the issue and also thinking about the research strategies. So at the city of Edmonton, with our missing middle infill design competition, one strategy that we did was actually invite the community to be part of the research team itself. So we invited them to define the issue. Define the criteria and the, you know, the design parameters that they would celebrate and embrace with parcels of land in their community. And for the most part, all of the homes in this neighborhood were all single, detached, single storey buildings. But when we invited them to participate, they told us that, you know, we would be willing to see your building go up to four stories as long as we are able to do X, Y and Z. And in the document itself, we also carved out space for them to share their perspective of their community ideas. And so I think it’s really important for us to think about as planners, what do we mean when we built our main streets for all?


Ariana Holt [00:34:27] Jason, that’s a really excellent point. I love the idea of that Main Street as a as a lab, and then I think your question is about what do we mean when we’re making Main Streets for all? Is really important. I’d like to pick up on one of your points. You know, we’ve it’s a kind of a common theme that’s been coming up throughout the week about, you know, there’s this has been a time of experimentation where municipal governments and other other players on Main Street have been taking a little bit more risk and experimenting. And that’s been a really positive thing that’s come out of the pandemic. I’m just wondering, based on, you know, you guys working on the ground, if you think that this is something that’s going to continue and it will also sort of impact with longer term planning and policy decisions as well, as these things tend to be so difficult and take take such a long, long time. Anyone can can respond. I saw you nodding, Jill.


Jill Robertson [00:35:29] Yeah, I think that this idea of a safe-to-fail experiment is going to be really powerful and carry us through, because you’re right. Changes to policy take time and things around Covid are changing so fast. But if you look at some of the great urbanism case studies, the Times Square, like they all started as tactical experiments and have led to transformation. So I think that this is a way to absolutely explore, as Jason said, the urban mean erm not just urban, but Main Street is the lab. And if we do it in a really quick light, tactical manner, if it doesn’t work, we can adjust. But because so much of this is unknown, I think this is really the best way to understand what’s going to work and what’s not and weave in that thread of context specificness to the experimentation. And there’s no downside. I think because things are it’s a pandemic. Things are pretty bad. So what’s the worst that can happen if you experiment? It’s probably not going to make the situation worse. You’re going to learn. We’re going to grow. We get the community engaged. I really think this is a great time because the barrier of sort of fear has been taken away. It is a perfect time for safe to fail.


Ariana Holt [00:36:49] Hazel, are you going to respond?


Hazel Borys [00:36:50] I think that’s so important. And I think that that also, you know, fail fast and and and evolve and, you know, and learn and grow is so important. But also, even in that process, of all the things that you were presenting today, Rob was really focused on that refinement of the connective tissue of our main street and the neighborhoods around it, and how when we strengthen that and heal the parts of that, that may be broken or that may be hostile to people outside of an armored vehicle or a car, that is, you know, then we end up with something that’s much more generative. And I know you had the happy city team on yesterday, but, you know, I think it’s important to start measuring, too, during this time of healing that, you know, what the impacts of well-being from the city are. So, you know, I feel like I have a lag in my video, and so it’s not that fun to go on, so I’m going to pause there and let someone who is less laggy take over.


Rob Leblanc [00:38:07] Yeah, maybe. Maybe I could just pick up on that for a second. I guess you know it in Halifax back looking at our research here at what cities were doing, the formation of the Strategic Transportation Planning Group and taking people out of the traditional silos that they tend to want to live in, where planners love to do the engagement and get good ideas. But when you put them together with enlightened engineers that have an understanding of alternate standards under attack and under complete streets, and you put those together with landscape architects and community builders that want to have a conversation with the community. So part of it is getting these pilots out and getting them built. And the next piece is testing them to see if they’re doing what you want them to do, that they meet all the needs and making small refinements along the way. I had a picture in here of the original Argyle Street as a pilot project before they moved forward about a year later, and they took everything that they learned from that process and implemented into the design. And it just makes it that much stronger. So I just a shout out for how you organize those things to work in cities makes a big difference. Take people out of their silos.


Hazel Borys [00:39:38] The one thing that I feel like that on your list, that gives me a little pause and probably just because I’m a zoning nerd and I fully acknowledge that. But, you know, the discussion of inclusionary zoning and as awesome as an idea as it is, I think it’s it’s so hard to implement. And and so we should do the things that are less expensive and more effective, first of removing the barriers to natural, naturally occurring, occurring affordable housing, which you did mention in your discussion of increasing that gentle density woven throughout the community instead of reserving density to certain locations. That is, in fact, more hostile to that community building.


Rob Leblanc [00:40:28] Well, sounds like a good intro for Eric here.


Eric Lucic [00:40:33] Thanks, Rob. And I guess that touches a little on policy in general, and Ariana brought that up in a how quick do you respond to policy when we don’t know what this pandemic is ultimately going to lead to? We’ve had asked to consider changing some of our Main Street policy to remove the commercial requirements to allow temporary residential. And while that might increase the availability of residential, what are the long term impacts on the commercial street? If you were to do such a thing so so I know my team were were hesitant to bring in things like that that will have long term effects with respect to affordable housing and all that, in the in gentle density, we’ve recently brought forward a secondary and backyard suites policy that really allows effectively every every property in the municipality to add secondary suites or backyard suites. So it’s a large change for Halifax Regional municipality and what it can bring to providing those affordable housing options. Ultimately, it will lead to the private sector or the public to provide the uptake, but at least we can provide the policy direction that allows it to happen.


Jason Syvixay [00:41:50] Just going to add to your question, so something that I heard during yesterday’s Main Street conversation from the happy city folks who really provided such a happy and convivial presentation. They said they they said that a main street is only as powerful as its community. And, you know, I reflect on the time when I used to work for a business improvements zone, and they’re called BID’s or BIA’s across the country and around the world. And I think a lot of these organizations have had these ideas and have really taken over the street for these to really attract people to their main streets, into their downtowns and now working as a city employee, you know, you’re starting to see governments now feeling that they are able to have license to also catch up to that pace and also being confident that they can also, you know, tolerate some risk as well. And so that’s been really intriguing to sort of be part of in real time is working with your colleagues who every day we’re starting to think about, well, how do we make these adjustments? What can we do for the winter? So it’s all in real time. It all feels pretty experimental. And I think that’s probably one of the exciting things about being a planner and a designer during this time, is that there are lots of precedents to be inspired from. There’s a lot of community organizations and and not for profit groups that are really pushing and leading this. And now it’s how can government respond to it? So that’s been really fun. And I think we’ve been able to show that good city planning is also one of the principles of being able to recover. And so in Edmonton, if I am now going to just kind of share some propaganda with you, but in Edmonton, you know, our recovery is really rooted in our municipal development plant. So, you know, when they’ve been thinking about how do we recover as a city, you know, our city plan or municipal development plan is really at the heart of that. So I think this is a great opportunity to really emphasize the importance of good city building, good city planning and partnership for an increasingly uncertain future.


Ariana Holt [00:43:57] Absolutely. Know, Rob, you want to speak to that, I mean, it goes to your point of the importance of secondary planning in in the pandemic. That’s something I think you felt really strongly about as being an important tool.


Rob Leblanc [00:44:09] Yeah, I mean, it’s always a great time to do a secondary plan, but in particular now we have the opportunity. I know Charlottetown in dealing with the secondary plan now for the downtown and for the main street. You know, I think there’s a kind of a wish that we had been a little more active with this stuff so that we could have had more implementation at a time when the tourists are down. You know, we could have got some things built. So, yeah, always a great time to do it. I think we now have the opportunity of taking stock of the changes that are coming down the pike and really kind of leaning into some of the new opportunities for for greater density around Main Street. And that could be using form base codes, which which we can chat about and the opportunities there. But at the end of the day, it’s really about providing greater certainty. So whether that plan is about a main street and the future investment over the next, say, five years or 10 years, it allows developers and land owners to better understand how the public investment will leverage new private investment opportunities. So, yeah, I think it’s a great time to be looking at solidifying our secondary plans for four main streets.


Ariana Holt [00:45:39] Yeah, I mean, I I’m very interested in this idea. I mean, I think what we’ve learned in our research is the importance of having residential population to support the main streets, the vibrancy and support the local businesses. And Eric, you touched on it and you talked about one strategy that Halifax is using by allowing secondary suites. And, Rob, you mentioned form based codes and wonder if anyone else has any thoughts on what they’re seeing is working. Like, what are the tools that are working to help get that gentle density into our neighborhoods?Hazel?


Hazel Borys [00:46:15] Well, you know, I’m so excited to hear form based codes being talked about in a Canadian context. We’ve written seventy one and the vast majority of those are in the US or in Eastern Europe and Asia. And so I’m so excited that the people are considering form based development bylaws and form based codes as well as ways to to do this. But once again, I think those like incremental steps, especially for the places that don’t necessarily have the budgets in place right now to do that. One time I was at dinner with the planning director of the city of Nashville, and over the years they’ve written one form base code at a time for twenty four neighborhoods and now it has over those collectively have over a billion dollars of new construction under that those zoning and subdivision regulations. But he said long before he wrote the first form based code, he just changed three sentences in their existing Euclidian use-based zoning. And that was for anything that’s a pedestrian priority’s street, the setbacks are changed to build two lines. The parking either has to be on street or behind the building, and there’s a minimum of 70 percent glass between two feet and 10 feet above the ground plane. And so those very simple things doesn’t require a large dollar amount, a large political understanding or, you know, a long amount of time. But it can really help. And, you know, some of the other zoning initiatives that are so useful right now with Covid are doing things like you already said with respect to ancillary dwelling units or enabling, you know, additional residential on one piece of property. But what about ancillary commercial units? So in a time where jobs are being decanted into neighborhood centers, you know, that’s so important to allow people to use their property and to generate some extra income from them for themselves, but to also either for themselves as their own business or let other small mom and pop business owners be able to be in that space doing tiny home zoning ordinances. Sorry. This is clearly one of my loves. So I could go on for a while about it. Somebody just asked in the chat. What is the definition of form based codes for non planners? You call it basically just means a zoning and subdivision ordinance and street design standards that turned the way we’ve been doing things inside out. So right now, those regulations first prioritize you use. Then secondly, they prioritize administration. And thirdly, they do prioritize the form of the urban environment. A form based code just takes those and turns that inside out. So it first prioritizes form. Secondly, it still deals with administration and it certainly deals with use. It only allows the mixture of compatible uses and compatible, you know, character. So we talk about it a lot. I run a website called, and you can see the cities around the world on that study that are currently adopting them and that says, what are the paybacks to people who plan it and profit for doing those sorts of initiatives?


Ariana Holt [00:50:09] One of the things I was going to add is that I think we need to have that blend of ingredients so the municipality needs to help create the policy environment. We need to make sure we’re supporting private investment. So, so much of the recovery is going to be tied to private investment because municipalities are financially strapped. So, you know, when I meet because I work in the private sector, when this started, we saw a lot of projects go hold as private development developers weren’t sure what’s going to happen. How is the pandemic and influence the market conditions and so now as there’s a bit more not certainty, but maybe stability, we see interest and development restarting with more interest and consideration of the public realm around those spaces. So it’s a chance, I think, as planners and designers to educate our clients about the importance of these spaces, but also then work with the municipalities to make sure that the tools are in place to streamline really good city building. And this is both at a rural scale, but also at an urban scale.


Jason Syvixay [00:51:20] I just want to add to what Jill was saying. I think in Edmonton there is a density and mass of various stakeholders who are really pushing to see changes happen in their community and throughout Edmonton. And so recently, folks might know that Edmonton actually changed our zoning bylaw to allow for zero parking minimums across the entire city. So big city building move that was just addressed and our city plan or municipal development plan was just approved, which integrates both land use and transportation and identifies various goals for nodes and corners and intensification, actually doubling down with our target from 25 percent of new units from infill to 50 percent in the city and in our current boundaries. And now we’re actually rewriting our entire zoning bylaw to match the policy intentions there. So one of the things that I’ll give a shout out to our zoning Bylaw team, because I’m not on that team, but I chatted with them beforehand and so excited to Robert Ruthorford and the team there. But they’re looking at sort of these context modifiers that looking at Mixed use zones that would support land use intensification based on the scale and the site of the area, really trying to, you know, double down on sort of the the what we’ve already seen in terms of successes and challenges, with our current main street overlay.


Ariana Holt [00:52:41] We have about five minutes left. So I think what we’ll do is we’ll we’ll go back around and give everyone a chance to, give about a minute to do most important takeaways from this discussion and and sort of what you think are the most important things that planners and placemakers and policymakers should think about when it comes to the future of planning and urban design for Main Street. So I’ll go the opposite way this time. That means starting with Jason.


Jason Syvixay [00:53:08] Well, this has been such a great conversation, I know it’s only been like fifty five minutes, but I would love to be able to keep chatting and loved hearing all of the perspectives here, I think. And as we say, partnership is crucial. But I think that’s one of the big lessons for me is that we’re going to need to draw upon all of the different ideas and alignments with different stakeholders to really make our ideas stick. And I saw a lot of that sort of come forward in the chat window there. So really excited about those opportunities as we move forward.


Ariana Holt [00:53:40] Hazel, you’re next.


Hazel Borys [00:53:41] I would just echo what Jason said. Thank you so much for convening this conversation, because convening community right now is so much about about zooming around and so really appreciate being able to hear voices from across Canada. And to be encouraged that the work that you’re all doing is so important. So keep it up.


Eric Lucic [00:54:07] I think it’s fantastic conversation that just opening up the opportunity for the discussion is your biggest start for making sure that change happens going forward. I reiterate the value of flexibility, trial, things like that. You know, now’s the time to make your change. I’ve heard a comment made by our CIO is like you don’t want to waste, you know, in a situation like this that is a pandemic where you can make change for good. So going forward, I think this is our opportunity.


Jill Robertson [00:54:50] I echo everything that’s been said, it’s been a great conversation and actually from it I’m taking a sense of optimism. I think that the pandemic. It’s a grind. You know, when we started, I think everyone thought it was a sprint and it was a marathon. Now it turns out it’s one of those 100 mile ultramarathons. So it’s hard to remain optimistic. And so but that’s so important to our individual well-being, to our community well-being and as planners, we have an opportunity to to lead a discussion and let people know that there are solutions. And we can create spaces for people to gather, to see their neighbors, to socialize, to address these challenges. So I feel really blessed to have been part of this conversation and energized. And I hope that everyone can take a piece of optimism back to their individual practices after today. And thanks to Rob and and the team for organizing it, this has been great.


Ariana Holt [00:55:48] Give the last word to you, Rob.


Rob Leblanc [00:55:50] All right. No pressure. Yeah, I just wanted to reiterate the street experiments that are going on now that we perhaps wouldn’t have had the opportunity to engage in the need for the de-silo-ization of different departments and bringing together, you know, like minds to do things. I didn’t get as much time as I would have liked to talk about the importance of parks and open space, because I think, you know, if the thrust is trying to get more density near Main Street, more people living on Main Street, we need to take stock of our park and open space networks and make sure that we’re planning them for future populations. And so there’s it’s you know, while land prices are relatively low and uncertainty is high, now is a good opportunity for municipalities to be looking and taking stock at that and and perhaps investing in their park spaces.


Ariana Holt [00:56:54] Well, I’m glad people are feeling optimistic, right? I feel that there’s a lot of energy and great ideas here and. Yeah. Thank you all very much for your time. And thanks to all everyone for tuning in and participating in the chat. Big things to Rob and Fathom Studio for all your work on the solution brief. And they’re actually we’re we are planning a couple of talks and think next week or the week after on parks with the people. So you can stay tuned for more conversations on that. This concludes Bring Back Main Street Action Week. Thanks again, everyone, for tuning in. And we’ll we’ll be in touch soon. Thanks.


Jason Syvixay [00:57:35] Thanks all.


Ariana Holt [00:57:35] Thanks, everyone.


Full Audience
Chatroom Transcript

Note to reader: Chat comments have been edited for ease of readability. The text has not been edited for spelling or grammar. For questions or concerns, please contact with “Chat Comments” in the subject lin

From Canadian Urban Institute: You can find transcripts and recordings of today’s and all our webinars at

12:03:15 From Canadian Urban Institute: Welcome! Folks, please change your chat settings to “all panelists and attendees” so everyone can see your comments.
12:03:46 From Canadian Urban Institute: You can find transcripts and recordings of today’s and all our sessions at
12:04:04 From Hazel Borys: Hello! Winnipeg, Manitoba.
12:04:07 From Canadian Urban Institute: Keep the conversation going #BringBackMainStreet #citytalk @canurb
12:04:08 From Khatereh Baharikhoob: Hi from Toronto
12:04:09 From Lindsey Sexton to All panelists: Hi from Boulder, Colorado
12:04:21 From Ayusha Hanif: Hello from Penetanguishene, Ontario
12:04:24 From Brenda Gagnier: Hi from Kingsville Ontario
12:04:26 From Jordan Riemer: Hi from Edmonton
12:04:28 From Rick Michalenko to All panelists: Hello from Calgary
12:04:33 From Canadian Urban Institute: CUI extends a big thank you to our partner for today’s session WWW.FATHOMSTUDIO.CA
12:04:35 From James Horan: Hi from Waterloo
12:04:37 From Katie Joyce to All panelists: Good morning from prospective planning student in Vancouver!
12:04:38 From Scott Cluney: Hello fron Downtown St. John’s, Newfoundland
12:04:40 From Abby S to All panelists: Hi from Toronto
12:04:44 From Brian Buchardt: Hello from the City of Peterborough!
12:04:47 From Canadian Urban Institute: Fathom Studio Report: Planning & Urban Design: Bring Back Main Street 01VOLUME A Pandemic Recovery Solutions Brief
12:04:51 From paul mackinnon to All panelists: Hello from Halifax!
12:04:53 From Lucia Huang: Hi everyone! This is Lucia from Chinatown Toronto
12:04:56 From Jill Robertson: Happy Friday from Edmonton!
12:04:56 From George Robinson: Hi from Windsor Ontario!
12:04:58 From Abby S: From Toronto
12:04:59 From Adam Coombs: Hello from Halifax
12:05:03 From Sahar Alinezhad to All panelists: Hi from Montreal!
12:05:11 From Darryl Gaston to All panelists: Greetings, I am Darryl Gaston from Charlotte, North Carolina, USA
12:05:20 From Canadian Urban Institute: To read this and other solutions briefs, visit:
12:05:47 From DeeDee Nelson: Hi all! From Vancouver, Musqueam Territory.
12:05:49 From Canadian Urban Institute: @jilly_robertson Hazel Borys, PlaceMakers @hborys Jason Syvixay, City of Edmonton @DowntownJason Eric Lucic, City of Halifax @LucicEric
12:06:04 From Jonathan Giggs: Jonathan Giggs from Port Credit in Mississauga
12:06:06 From Laleh Derakhti to All panelists: hi friMalmo
12:06:25 From Jaime Brush to All panelists: Hi from Pullman, WA., USA
12:07:12 From Astra Burka: From Astra Burka Toronto
12:08:11 From Canadian Urban Institute: Reminding attendees to please change your chat settings to “all panelists and attendees” so everyone can see your comments. Thanks!
12:08:50 From Jaime Brush: Hi from Pullman, WA., USA!
12:09:56 From Abby S: This segmentation is really interesting and I have not seen it before…it is helpful to take this approach.
12:10:07 From Abby S: (seen it before on these talks)
12:11:24 From Abby S: Diversity?
12:12:03 From paul mackinnon: Hi from Halifax!
12:12:23 From Anne Poirier Basque to All panelists: Hi from Moncton
12:12:53 From Crystal Chan: Greetings from Richmond BC!
12:17:34 From paul mackinnon: Fathom did a terrific job on Needham Park (Halifax Explosion)! One of my favourite places to take the kids/dog.
12:17:57 From Andrew Struthers: how long ago was that?
12:18:30 From Yurij Pelech: Greetings from Bessant Pelech Associates Inc (Mississauga ON) land use planning and gerontology / ltc consultants
12:18:55 From paul mackinnon: Well the explosion was in 1917. Don’t know when the park was created. But the re-do was completed 2017 to honour the centenary.
12:21:15 From Abby S: These are wonderful initiatives. I can’t wait to visit Halifax again one day….
12:21:57 From Jonathan Giggs: Making me quite depressed about the lack of change in Mississauga
12:22:23 From Abby S: @jonathan It should not take a pandemic to make streets more people friendly. I hear ya
12:23:02 From Jonathan Giggs: Where there is a will, there is a way…
12:23:16 From paul mackinnon: I’d love to see those fire pits pop up throughout Canadian downtowns! I’m sure city insurance depts. would not like it, but it seems to Canadian, and it engages multiple senses, as we talked about yesterday.
12:23:23 From DeeDee Nelson: I very much enjoyed that presentation, thank you Rob.
12:24:05 From Andrew Struthers: The history, story-telling with parks and spaces. Great angle.
12:25:36 From Marie-Josée Houle to All panelists: When I spent time in Oslo, I noticed a lot of patios open in cooler weather. Blankets and patio heaters were provided.
12:26:07 From paul mackinnon: Curious to hear ideas for what is the BEST immediately doable thing for winter in our downtowns (particularly as Feds have announced their $31m program)
12:26:41 From Jill Robertson: a lot of the Scandinavian countries are wonderful in terms of year-round outdoor spaces
12:27:06 From paul mackinnon: Halifax’s municipal election is TOMORROW. Fingers crossed for continued and even more progressive council!
12:27:50 From Marie-Josée Houle: When I spent time in Oslo, I noticed a lot of patios open in cooler weather. Blankets and patio heaters were provided. It was a great example of Scandinavian spending time outside when Canadians isolate inside.
12:29:20 From Cheryl Cohen: Hello from Toronto! As important to me as outdoor heaters and converted outdoor spaces, during the Winter months, is improving lighting in public spaces. I find that most winter clothing comes in dark colours and the sun sets so early, improving outdoor lighting is very important.
12:29:42 From Jordan Riemer: A local pub in Edmonton has a cheaper beer menu for those who sit in their outdoor patio – the best kind of incentive to get people to try winter cities
12:30:29 From Andrew Struthers: Good one.
12:30:57 From Jonathan Giggs: @Cheryl Agree about lighting. I don’t like being outside in Port Credit not because of the cold but how dismal the lighting is.
12:31:14 From Abby S: love the term urban acupuncture!!!
12:31:26 From Ralph Cipolla: hello from Orillia thank you great presentation can anyone speak on winter projects in downtown regards Ralph Cipolla
12:33:13 From Sheena jardine-Olade to All panelists: @Cheryl there are also really interesting ways of incorporating lighting that is playful and useful. Umea– their bus stop lighting have SAD lamps, in Montreal in Quartier Spectacles light is also used for way finding. Lighting really has the ability to transform space so totally in agreement.
12:33:33 From Sheena jardine-Olade: @Cheryl there are also really interesting ways of incorporating lighting that is playful and useful. Umea– their bus stop lighting have SAD lamps, in Montreal in Quartier Spectacles light is also used for way finding. Lighting really has the ability to transform space so totally in agreement. @Cheryl there are also really interesting ways of incorporating lighting that is playful and useful. Umea– their bus stop lighting have SAD lamps, in Montreal in Quartier Spectacles light is also used for way finding. Lighting really has the ability to transform space so totally in agreement.
12:34:47 From Cheryl Cohen: Thank you Sheena. Great ideas!
12:35:35 From Andrew Struthers: Good point Jason. I’d include smaller scale endeavours, with more regularity
12:36:02 From Lindsey Sexton to All panelists: I’m not in city government. Who do I look to contact in my city to share ideas I have for creating community events on Main street?
12:36:10 From Jordan Riemer: Great points here, Jason. Inviting the community is the key to make innovative thinking stick.
12:36:15 From DeeDee Nelson: Thank you Jason for including social and cultural aspects in the strategies.
12:39:42 From Canadian Urban Institute: Lindsey — Business improvement area associations are a great place to start. Not every main street is covered by one, but many are
12:40:06 From Canadian Urban Institute: And their role is to improve main streets!
12:40:35 From Abby S: the downtown initiatives are wonderful. can the panelists speak to some of those segmented areas and what initiatives might look like in business districts (was that parking lots?) but tower dominated spaces? and rural decentralized downtowns?
12:41:26 From Andrew Struthers: Or big refinements if things aren’t working
12:41:30 From Abby S: although in some cases rural downtowns are not decentralized within smaller towns.
12:45:36 From paul mackinnon: Agree, Jason. BIAs (now 50 yrs old!) should now have proven themselves to be reliable partners to the municipality. Ideally those groups can share ideas/risks, particularly with these pilots.
12:45:54 From Andrew Struthers: DECL doing a great job though, too
12:46:03 From George Robinson: In Windsor each BIA has a different approach to streetscaping and temp outdoor patios so really nice to see similar ideas implemented in different ways / materials this past summer.
12:47:57 From Andrew Struthers: A secondary plan for Churchill Sq. with the library opening…
12:48:59 From Alanna Morton: Support from the City of Edmonton has been crucial for BIAs to execute short term sidewalk & patio expansions
12:49:52 From Abby S: definition of form based codes for us non-planners???
12:50:55 From George Robinson: Abby:
12:50:59 From DeeDee Nelson: That’ very interesting about Nashville. So great to learn from others who have already solved certain problems!
12:51:20 From Abby S: thank you!!!
12:51:27 From Astra Burka: From Astra Burka I have never understood what is a secondary plan. Would it not make sense to create a Master Plan based on an organic circular economy script and develop the city around the vision? We are over studied and not allowing creative thinking to our policy makers. These are all great ideas and the key is to change the thinking of the decision makers.
12:52:49 From Hazel Borys:
12:53:19 From Andrew Struthers: Re starting but also all the new development along the valley line
12:53:24 From Hazel Borys: to see where form-based codes are happening globally — collaborative study, so please add any FBCs that isn’t
12:53:35 From Hazel Borys: included in the study
12:54:03 From Crystal Chan: Bus bulbs are being implemented in Vancouver (along Main and Robson St for instance) to help reduce congestion times within these pedestrianized hubs where lots of sidewalks are being transformed and winterized to carry outdoor patios further into winter! And to help facilitate safe movement of people, pets, and multi modes of travel.
12:54:10 From Hazel Borys: Also, shows the paybacks to resilience for adopting form-based codes and other tools for enabling walkable urban places.
12:54:27 From DeeDee Nelson: Love seeing plans that guide towards sensitivity to climate and environmental goals.
12:54:46 From James Horan: Ontario has a Development Permit System or Community Permit System which can be employed like a form based code.
12:54:58 From Canadian Urban Institute: Fathom Studio Report: Planning & Urban Design: Bring Back Main Street 01VOLUME A Pandemic Recovery Solutions Brief To read this and other solutions briefs, visit: Also check out our Main Street Design Challenge Playbook
12:55:32 From Andrew Struthers: Thanks to all, organizers also
12:55:35 From Hazel Borys: More on the coding proces:
12:55:52 From Brenda Gagnier: Will you be sending us all an email including all these hyperlinks?
12:55:53 From DeeDee Nelson: Thank you so much everyone!
12:56:22 From Hazel Borys:
12:56:31 From Hazel Borys:
12:56:32 From Chelsea Whity: Great conversation! Thanks to the presenters and CUI!
12:56:33 From Canadian Urban Institute: We will post the recording, the chat, five takeaways and a list of all the links posted
12:56:49 From Canadian Urban Institute: and a transcript!
12:56:51 From Brenda Gagnier: Great. Thank you all.
12:57:07 From Jason Syvixay: Thank you to the panelists today, loved the conversation! Learned a lot from all of you. And thanks to all of you for tuning in!
12:57:15 From Canadian Urban Institute to Brenda Gagnier and all panelists: Hi, Brenda! We will post the chat and you will be able to glean all of these references. Not100% sure, but you may be able to save the chat now.
12:57:44 From Mark Roseland: Thanks all and CUI!
12:57:46 From Randy Kay to All panelists: Great webinar, very inspiring
12:57:48 From Ralph Cipolla: from Ralph Cipolla …thank you great job everyone
12:57:51 From Canadian Urban Institute: You can find transcripts, chats and recordings of today’s and all our sessions at Keep the conversation going #BringBackMainStreet #citytalk @canurb To support CityTalk and the Canadian Urban Institute’s other city building initiatives, please donate at CUI extends a big thank you to our partner for today’s session WWW.FATHOMSTUDIO.CA
12:57:52 From Abby S: planners like you can really drive change. thank you!
12:58:32 From Khatereh Baharikhoob: Optimism is the key to move forward! Thanks Jill.
12:58:48 From Meeri Durand: Thank you everyone! Exciting ideas – can’t wait to get them going on the ground and happy for the reference to embracing winter (as a Swedish Estonian – winter is my jam)
12:58:48 From Andrew Struthers: Would love to hear that conversation
12:59:01 From Hazel Borys: Thanks to everyone on today’s webinar! Really appreciate the exchange.