Courtenay’s Official Community Plan update has reached its next milestone, and the city wants to hear from you on next steps.

The city is seeking input on how and where future growth could be accommodated.

It’s estimated that Courtenay will have 4,500 new residents by 2031.

A new interactive and visual survey is now available on the project page at www.courtenay.ca/OCPupdate, where you can weigh in on where the city grows, through proposed future growth hotspots; as well as how it grows, featuring ideas for the downtown core, urban centre, neighbourhood hubs, infill, and streets.

You have until Sept. 8 to fill out the survey, for a chance to win a $100 gift card to a local downtown Courtenay business.

Other ways to provide feedback include an online Story Map where you can submit photos and comments, as well as an OCP Exploration Workbook if you’re looking to explore and share a deeper perspective. 

The workbook guides the reader through a variety of open ended questions about what is important in building a community and the future of Courtenay. 

The workbook can be conducted alone or in small groups, including with children.

“The OCP update is one of Council’s top strategic priorities, and we encourage everyone to complete the survey and share their vision for Courtenay’s future,” says Mayor Bob Wells. “All the engagement tools have been designed to be interactive and fun.”

The survey takes between 10-15 minutes to complete and asks participants to rate a series of vision and goal statements, rate and comment on the proposed growth locations, and rate a series of photos of development types in order to understand what types of housing, commercial buildings and streetscapes are locally appropriate.

This phase of the OCP update project builds on ideas generated at the Ideas Fair earlier this year, stakeholder engagement, and the Council policy direction to be a net zero GHG community by 2050, as well as be consistent with the Comox Valley Regional District’s Regional Growth Strategy.

Input will inform community planning goals and development policies which will then be presented to stakeholders and the public in the fall for further feedback. 

The city says staff will be exploring opportunities to bring virtual or physically-distanced workshops into eight neighbourhoods across Courtenay in a way that complies with public health orders.

The last significant update for the OCP was in 2005. 

The upcoming review is expected to carry the community forward over the next 10 years. 

Council will consider the plan for adoption by early 2021.

To learn more about the OCP update and subscribe to the project newsletter, click here.