DIALOG receives national recognition for urban planning excellence

The Canadian Institute of Planners (CIP) has recognized DIALOG for its work on three major urban planning initiatives. The Hurontario Main Street Corridor Master Plan for the City of Brampton and the City of Mississauga received an Award of Excellence in its Transportation and Infrastructure category. UniverCity at Simon Fraser University in Burnaby received an Award of Excellence in its Neighbourhood Planning category, while the City of Edmonton Capital City Downtown Plan received an Honorable Mention in the same category. All of these collaboratively generated initiatives envision a bold new future for the urban context of these communities. The annual CIP awards program honours excellence in planning and innovation while taking into consideration an initiative’s impact on the profession, its implementation potential, and its overall presentation.  This year’s awards event will be held in conjunction with the CIP Annual conference taking place July 10-13, 2011, in St. John’s, Newfoundland.

The Metrolinx Big Move Regional Transportation Plan, adopted in November 2008, sets many goals to improve the state of transportation across the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area, the most notable of which is the construction of a comprehensive regional rapid transit network. The Big Move recognizes the Hurontario/Main Street corridor between Port Credit in Mississauga to Downtown Brampton as a top priority corridor for the implementation of rapid transit within the next 15 years. The Hurontario Main Street Corridor Master plan focuses on the integration of planning for rapid transit, intensified land use and enhanced urban design. The project is fundamentally about city-building along the Hurontario corridor – creating a main street for the 21st century, where people can live, work and play in a highly sustainable and active way.

“Both cities have shown tremendous leadership, by closely integrating mobility and city-building objectives, and by placing the creation of transit-and pedestrian-oriented environments as a distinct priority,” remarked Antonio Gomez-Palacio, principal and urban designer with DIALOG.

DIALOG completed the master plan for UniverCity at Simon Fraser University, integrating a wide range of housing for both university and non-university related households, new retail and office developments, parks, schools and community facilities.

The City of Edmonton selected DIALOG to lead a team of consultants in the development of the City’s Capital City Downtown Plan.  The plan focuses on the development of four key pillars – Policies, Zoning, Implementation, and Catalyst Projects. The overarching goals of the plan include preserving and sustaining Edmonton’s environment, improving livability, transforming the urban form, shifting transportation modes, ensuring financial stability, and diversifying the economy.

“The Capital City Downtown Plan is recognition that a City is only as strong as its core neighbourhoods, with great placemaking starting at the centre. The Downtown Plan is about civic engagement and creating a sustainable legacy,” commented a CIP jury member.  “It unveils the community core and showcases Edmonton on the world stage as a vibrant place to live, work, play, and learn.”

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