Last year, we hired Ryder Communication Management to do a jurisdictional analysis of planning strategies and to recommend the contents of one for the Yukon. With this report in hand, we are exploring ways to collaboratively create a Yukon Regional Planning Strategy. The report comes in 2 parts: a report, and a table of strategy components used in different jurisdictions.
Since 2014, we, our staff and contractors have been thinking about Yukon land use planning and the process we can all follow to get successful plans. In 2015, Lesley Cabott Consulting & Associates drafted an analysis of potential solutions. One of the most pivotal recommendations was to develop a Yukon Regional Planning Strategy or framework. This recommendation led us to commission this report.
Though land-claims in the Yukon outline the general regional planning process, specific details are missing. A broadly supported, collaboratively written strategy would go a long way to fill these gaps. Such a strategy could contain the following elements:
- VISION: A vision for land use planning in the Yukon
- GOVERNANCE: A description of the high-level relationship and roles between the Government of Yukon and the affected First Nations
- DECISION MAKING: Plans will be developed using consensus based decision making. How governments will approve plans.
- PLANNING REGIONS: Map and description of planning regions
- PLANNING PROCESS: A description of the phases common to all future land use planning processes
- LAND DESIGNATION SYSTEM: Definitions of general over-arching land designations (i.e. protection and conservation zones; resource development; community boundaries; mixed-use; etc.)
- PUBLIC PARTICIPATION: Descriptions of how planning commissions will provide for participation and engagement with the public and other stakeholders
- LINKAGES TO OTHER RESOURCE MANAGEMENT EFFORTS: General provisions that indicate planning hierarchy and that the commission must consider other planning efforts or strategies in the region. Include information on sub-regional plans from the Umbrella Final Agreement.
- LEGACY PLANS: How to bring Legacy Plans like the North Yukon, or plans underway into alignment (or not) with this framework.
- REVIEW AND AMENDMENT: Describe considerations for reviewing and updating the strategy and plans.
Similar strategies or frameworks have been established in many parts of Canada; some examples include:
- The Alberta Land-use Framework
- The NWT Land Use Planning Policy Framework
- Saskatchewan's "The Statements of Provincial Interest Regulations"
- A New Direction for Strategic Land Use Planning in BC: Synopsis
We look forward to collaborating with the Yukon Government and Yukon First Nations in developing a strategy!