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The North Fraser River greenway : using greenway design as a tool for industrial retention, environmental… Mikkelsen, Dale R. 2000

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THE NORTH FRASER RIVER GREENWAY: USING G R E E N W A Y DESIGN AS A TOOL FOR INDUSTRIAL RETENTION, ENVIRONMENTAL RESTORATION, AND PUBLIC INTEGRATION A L O N G A WORKING W A T E R W A Y by DALE R. MIKKELSEN B.A., The University of Calgary, 1994 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE D E G R E E OF MASTER OF L A N D S C A P E ARCHITECTURE in THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES and THE FACULTY OF AGRICULTURAL SC IENCES We accept this thesis as conforming To the required standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA April 2000 © Dale R. Mikkelsen, 2000 THESIS AUTHORIZATION FORM In p r e s e n t i n g t h i s t h e s i s i n p a r t i a l f u l f i l m e n t of the requirements f o r an advanced degree at the U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia, I agree that the L i b r a r y s h a l l make i t f r e e l y a v a i l a b l e f o r reference and study. I f u r t h e r agree that permission f o r extensive copying of t h i s t h e s i s f o r s c h o l a r l y purposes may be granted b y v t h e head of my department or by h i s or her ( r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s . I t i s understood that copying or p u b l i c a t i o n of t h i s t h e s i s f o r f i n a n c i a l g ain s h a l l not be allowed without my w r i t t e n permission. Department The U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia Vancouver, Canada Thesis 2000 n Fraser River Greenway ABSTRACT The north shore of the North Arm of the Fraser River represents the Southern boundary of the City of Vancouver. This boundary has been crucial to the development of Vancouver as a city that strives on natural resource processing and shipping. This industrial heritage along the North Fraser has provided Vancouver with a substantial portion of its revenue and tax base since the 1800's, but is currently under threat by land developers and residential pressures. With this development pressure comes the increased lure of immediate revenue, increased public use of the waterfront, and an increase in market housing within the city limits. However, this pressure will also result in a loss of economic sustainability and long-term revenue dollars. This is a trend that is occurring throughout the lower mainland, encouraging a commuter environment and a dissociation between place of work and place of residence. This thesis seeks to combat this issue and will illustrate that it is not only desirable, but necessary to sustain urban resource-based industry along the North Fraser. Through the implementation of a Greenway design, the thesis will prove that the portion of the North Fraser that lies between the Knight Street Bridge and the Oak Street Bridge can retain its industrial character, while becoming more inclusive of the cultural/social needs of a growing population and recognizing environmental concerns. The implementation of a public recreational Greenway will enhance the quality of the area, thereby drawing users both within and beyond the surrounding community to take advantage of a great resource that is often forgotten or hidden by intensive industrial frontage. At the same time, the Greenway will provide opportunities for education and awareness that will highlight the values and benefits of an industrial infrastructure along the North Fraser. Finally, the thesis will prove that such an endeavour is not only sustainable in a cultural and economic sense, but that a Greenway has the capacity to provide a rehabilitated ecological condition that will sustain a valuable and fragile ecosystem. Thesis 2000 ii Fraser River Greenway TABLE OF CONTENTS ABSTRACT II TABLE OF CONTENTS HI LIST OF TABLES VI LIST OF FIGURES VII ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS IX EXECUTIVE SUMMARY 1 NATURE OF THE PROBLEM 1 HYPOTHESIS 1 SOLUTION 2 FORWARD 3 CHAPTER 1: GAINING INSIGHT AND UNDERSTANDING 5 INTRODUCTION 5 A BRIEF HISTORICAL CONTEXT 6 PHYSICAL CONTEXT 7 NATIONAL and PROVINCIAL SCALE 7 REGIONAL SCALE; THE LOWER MAINLAND 8 The Fraser River Estuary 8 CLASSIFICATION OR CODING 10 Tidal Influence and River Flow 11 Sedimentation 11 Flooding and Water Control 12 LOCAL SCALE; THE SITE 12 Physical Environment of the Green way 14 Physical Environment of the Industry 15 POLICY CONTEXT: 17 NATIONAL SCALE - THE DEPARTMENT OF FISHERIES AND OCEANS (DFO) 18 Communications 19 Habitat and Enhancement 19 Fisheries Management 20 Conservation and Protection 20 Aboriginal Fisheries 21 Canadian Coast Guard 21 Oceans 21 Science 22 PROVINCIAL SCALE - FRASER RIVER ESTUARY MANAGEMENT PROGRAM (FREMP) 22 Brief on Ecological Policy 24 Brief on Industrial Policy 24 Brief on Recreational and Cultural Policy 25 REGIONAL SCALE - THE NORTH FRASER PORT AUTHORITY (NFPA) 26 The North Fraser Harbour Management Plan 27 The Port North Fraser Land Use Plan Synopsis 28 LOCAL SCALE - CITY OF VANCOUVER PLANNING DEPARTMENT (BLUEWAYS & GREENWAYS) 29 A Case for Green ways 31 Planning and Industry 33 Planning and Environment 36 Planning and Recreation 38 Thesis 2000 iii Fraser River Green way SUMMARY AND DIRECTION: 40 CHAPTER 2: BALANCE AND CHANGE IN THE URBAN ENVIRONMENT. 43 LEARNING FROM THE PAST: 43 CASE STUDIES ON INDUSTRIAL AND RECREATIONAL DESIGN 43 CASE STUDY #1 - THE HARTFORD RIVERFRONT 43 CASE STUDY W2 - PORTLAND HARBOR LAND ZONING 46 CASE STUDY #3 - MISSION BAY, SAN FRANCISCO 48 CASE STUDY #4 - NEWARK-ON-TRENT, ENGLAND 50 CASE STUDY #5-CARNEGIE MELLON RESEARCH INSTITUTE, PITTSBURGH 53 DESIGN DISCUSSION AND LITERATURE REVIEW 55 A BRIEF STUDY OF SUSTAINABILITY 59 INDUSTRIAL ECONOMICS. 62 The Landscape of Technology: 63 RECREATION AND GREENWAYS. 67 Greenways as Transportation 69 Greenway Implementation 71 URBAN ECOLOGY AND HABITAT. 80 The Ecology of Greenways 82 SYNTHESIS AND ANALYSIS - CAN WE DESIGN BALANCE?: 85 CHAPTER 3: SITE ANALYSIS AND ROUTE DEVELOPMENT 89 MAPA-1: MASS/VOID ANALYSIS- Void Situations 91 MAPA-2: MASS/VOID ANALYSIS - Void Situation by Type 93 MAPA-3: MASS/VOID ANALYSIS-Mass Situations 96 MAPA-4: MASS/VOID ANALYSIS - Mass Situation by Type 98 MAP A-5: OPPORTUNITIES & CONSTRAINTS -Access 101 MAP A-6: OPPORTUNITIES & CONSTRAINTS - Open Space and Recreation 104 MAPA-7: OPPORTUNITIES & CONSTRAINTS-Habitat 107 MAPA-8: OPPORTUNITIES & CONSTRAINTS - Interpretive Sites 110 MAPA-9: VIEWING OPPORTUNITIES 113 MAPA-10: EXISTING PHYSICAL CONDITION-Non-Evaluative 116 MAP OVERLAYS - GETTING MEANING OUT OF ANALYSIS 119 MAPA-11: COMPOSITE OPPORTUNITIES. 120 MAPA-12: COMPOSITE CONSTRAINTS 123 MAPA-13: COMPOSITE OPPORTUNITY AND CONSTRAINT (Overlay of Maps A-11 andA-12) 127 SUMMARY AND DIRECTION: 130 CHAPTER 4: FINAL ROUTE DESIGN AND DISCUSSION 131 MAP B-3 & B-4: ROUTE OPTION #1 - Strict Policy-Based 135 MAP B-4a: ROUTE OPTION #la - Kent-Based NFPA Option 139 MAP B-4b: ROUTE OPTION #lb - Kent-Based Semi-Direct 141 MAP B-5 & B-6: ROUTE OPTION #2 - Free-Form Policy-Based 143 MAP B-6a: ROUTE OPTION #2a - Multiple Route Free-Form 148 MAP B-6b: ROUTE OPTION #2b - Linear Free-Form 150 FINAL ROUTE DESIGN 152 MAPC-1: FRASER RIVER GREENWAY-Masterplan 152 General Route Description: An Industrial Greenway 152 ROUTE AND DEVELOPMENT TYPOLOGIES: 158 ROUTE FEATURES AND GOVERNANCE: 160 BUILDING REDEVELOPMENTS 167 5 Year Residential Redevelopment 167 Heather Street Industrial Redevelopment 168 Coast Appliance Distribution Centre Redevelopment 168 Modern Storage/Warehouse Space Residential Redevelopment 168 10 Year Residential Redevelopment 168 Thesis 2000 iv Fraser River Greenway Used Automotive Lot/Vacant Lot 168 HABITAT REHABILITATION/CONSTRUCTION: 169 PHASING 170 CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS 176 ANNOTATED/EVALUATIVE BD3LIOGRAPHY & RELEVANT REFERENCES 180 APPENDIX 1 190 APPENDED H 195 APPENDIX m 210 APPENDIX TV 212 Thesis 2000 v Fraser River Greenway LIST OF TABLES Table Page 1. Analysis and Overlay Flow-Chart 90 2. Matrix #1 - Opportunity Assessment 125 3. Matrix #2 - Constraint Assessment 126 4. Route Proposal Evaluation Form 155 5. Route Option #1 - Greenway Features 189 6. Route Option #1 - Area Redevelopments 190 7. Route Option #2 - Greenway Features 191 8. Route Option #3 - Area Redevelopments 192 Thesis 2000 vi Fraser River Greenway LIST OF FIGURES Figure Page 1. A-1: MassA/oid Analysis - Void Situations 92 2. A-2: MassA/oid - Void Situation by Type 95 3. A-3: MassA/oid Analysis - Mass Situations 97 4. A-4: MassA/oid - Mass Situation by Type 100 5. A-5: Opportunities & Constraints - Access 103 6. A-6: Opportunities & Constraints - Open Space/Recreation 106 7. A-7: Opportunities & Constraints - Habitat 109 8. A-8: Opportunities & Constraints - Interpretive 112 9. A-9: Viewing Opportunities 115 10. A-10: Existing Condition (Non-Evaluative) 118 11. A-11: Composite Opportunities 122 12. A-12: Composite Constraints 124 13. A-13: Opportunity & Constraint (Combination of A-11 and A-12) 129 14. B-1: Route Possibilities 133 15. B-2: Redevelopment Opportunities 134 16. B-3: Route Option #1 (Open Space/Features/Nodes) 135 17. B-4: Route Option #1 (Greenway Location Only) 136 18. B-4a: Route Option #1 a 138 19. B-4b: Route Option #1b 140 20. B-5: Route Option #2 (Open Space/Features/Nodes) 144 21. B-6: Route Option #2 (Greenway Location Only) 145 22. B-6a: Route Option #2a 147 23. B-6b: Route Option #2b 149 24. C-1: Fraser River Greenway - Final Masterplan 152 25. C-2: Development Phase #1 171 26. C-3: Development Phase #2 172 27. C-4: Development Phase #3 173 Thesis 2000 vii Fraser River Greenway Figure Page 28. Site Cross Sections and Perspectives Aa to Mm 194 29. Roadway Crossing Typologies A1 to A3 209 30. Sectional Elevations E1 to E3 211 Thesis 2000 viii Fraser River Greenway ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS For Grandpa Tony - Who'd have known I'd follow in the footsteps of someone I never truly got to appreciate. For Grandma Nancy -1 hope you're still tinkering in your garden wherever you may be. The completion of this thesis has been at once interesting, exciting, challenging, painful, arduous, and boring. However, it has been an experience that I shall not forget nor ever regret. With these pages now behind me, I can look back and reflect on the process that has led me to its completion. In this reflection, it becomes clear that completion would have been most difficult if not for the help, support, patience, and guidance of many individuals. First and foremost is the Chair of my Thesis Advisory Committee, Patrick Mooney. His patience and dedication to meeting this task head-on with a sensible and pro-active approach has led not only to my timely completion, but to a project that I feel we can both be proud of. Being that no thesis can be completed without the input of others, I must also thank the rest of my Thesis Committee. Stephen Shepphard's pickiness and attention to detail, wording, and functionality of design are without reproach and was instrumental in my production of a design that is as much doable as it is desirable. The experience and practicality of Larry Diamond, as well as his professional skills as a designer taught me new ways to present information and understand the validity of typologies and typicals in planning-oriented design. Finally, Karen Hoese of the City of Vancouver Blueways Department was a vital source of contacts, documents, information, and general awareness of the sight to be studied. If I needed information, Karen had it. Beyond my Committee, I would like to thank my wife, Layla, for bearing with me as I effectively ignored her for much of the last six months. I'm done now... let's get to know one another again. Thesis 2000 ix Fraser River Greenway EXECUTIVE SUMMARY NATURE OF THE P R O B L E M Vancouver, like many cities, continues to lose traditional forms of resource-based industry. In recent years, the trend has been to pursue the redevelopment of industrial areas to multi-dwelling residential communities (COV: 1999, F R E M P : 1996, Reid: 1990). In the past, Vancouver has favoured its ocean waterfront. Policy has been in place since the mid-1980's to enforce one hundred percent public access to ocean-fronting lands (COV: 1995). In this endeavour, Vancouver's other waterfront, the North Shore of the North Arm of the Fraser River (NAFR), has been effectively ignored. Recognition of this fact has resulted in new policies being introduced into the City of Vancouver urban planning structure. In 1998, the City produced a document called "Blueways". This document is perhaps the first to address all of Vancouver's waterfront resources. Specifically, it calls for a reversal of the neglect that has befallen the North Arm of the North Fraser. With the acceptance of the "Blueways" document as official city planning policy, the Blueways Division of the City's Planning and Engineering Departments was created. This fosters a new focus on developing the NAFR in a way that preserves industry. While this division is rather new and its current policies are somewhat vague and untested, it is the catalyst that led to this thesis investigation. . HYPOTHESIS This thesis is an exploration through design of the hypotheses that: 1. It is possible to use the greenway design tool as the primary formal element in a program that encourages waterfront redevelopment and industrial retention for the NAFR. Thesis 2000 1 Fraser River Greenway 2. Such a greenway can mitigate conflict between industry and residential development, while promoting educational opportunities and increased recreational capacity. 3. The proposed greenway can also increase both the social and ecological sustainability of the study area. SOLUTION From these hypotheses the following goal for the thesis was developed: To prove (through sustainable design methodologies) that it is possible to create a waterfront greenway that mitigates the conflict between residential demands and the retention of resource-based industry, while providing opportunity for recreation, education, and subsidiary small mixed enterprise, in a more sustainable environment. The following objectives follow logically for this goal. Ideally, the design thesis should: 1) promote a waterfront environment on the NAFR that allows a high level of mixed use that; 2) supports the ecological, economic, and social ramifications of sustainable development. The design will use the greenway as the formal element that not only holds these often disparate parts together, but joins them in a way that is cohesive and mutually supportive. Thesis 2000 2 Fraser River Greenway FORWARD The role of cities as we move into the 21 Century is changing drastically. With advances in high-technology industry and new ideals for the industrial environment, we are seeing a refocusing of much urban structure (Banerjee And Southworth: 1990). In this regard, Vancouver is no different than many other cities. Population growth and the birth of new industrial forms are beginning to place great pressures on existing industrial conditions. However, Vancouver City Planners are aware of the value in retaining its heavy industrial base, especially along its urban waterways - the Burrard Inlet and the Fraser River. It is along these shorelines that the pressure for development is greatest, but it is along these same stretches that much heavy industry is located, creating a large revenue and employment base for the city. With land developers (largely residential) offering high purchase prices for these industrial parcels, it is difficult for private enterprise to resist the opportunity to sell when leases expire. That this is occurring is evident in the average 12 percent growth in population in North Fraser River communities between 1986 and 1991, and the decline in the average household size from almost 4 persons to less than 2.5 persons during the same period. Fewer persons per home mean more homes are necessary to accommodate a growing population. (COV: 1999) Growing concerns with the environmental health of these highly diverse and ecologically rich interface areas compound the issues that occur along urban waterfronts (FREMP: 1996). There are also heavy pressures to restore and preserve the natural balances necessary for a rich avian, mammalian, reptilian, and aquatic environment on the NAFR. This concern stems from population growth, a declining resource-based industrial edge, and the "tidiness" of residential waterfront developments (FREMP: 1996). These resources not only represent a sense of history and place, but make up a large portion of the economic value of this great waterway. The City of Vancouver recognizes this crisis situation and is grappling with the question of haw a modern city like Vancouver can retain this valuable industrial base, while incorporating the needs of a growing residential environment. Thesis 2000 3 Fraser River Greenway A solution taken by the City of Vancouver along the Burrard Inlet and along the Fraser River from Boundary Road to Knight Street is the promotion of a seawall environment, where a recreational greenway acts as a buffer between urban structure/growth and the natural environment. While this greenway meets the growing recreational needs of the City and mitigates industrial and residential stresses on the immediate foreshore environment, there is some question as to the actual ability of the seawall design solution to retain biodiversity, reduce pollutants, and filter runoff. A seawall style of greenway can also be seen as a catalyst for increased residential development (a great displacer of industrial waterfront activity) (Reid: 1990). It appears from these existing conditions that the greenway and recreational environment resulting from the establishment of such a corridor can instead be designed to promote increased awareness and concern for the waterfront environment. If this greenway concept can be moved from being merely recreational, to being ecologically supportive and industrially adaptive, then recreation can co-exist with the industrial environment, while sheltering the waterfront resource. While it may be difficult to integrate residential development, urban recreation, and river-dependent industry, it is imperative that a modern city must begin to look at such solutions in order to preserve a valuable industrial resource. The City of Vancouver must do this in a way that fosters sustainable growth and supports ecological integrity, while incorporating growing needs of a society that may no longer recognize the validity of heavy industry as necessary in the retention of a strong and diverse urban economic foundation. Thesis 2000 4 Fraser River Greenway CHAPTER 1 GAINING INSIGHT AND UNDERSTANDING INTRODUCTION Let us go back in time 3,000 years. We are paddling down the North Arm of the Fraser River Estuary. There, high up on a bluff on the right bank, near where the northern end of the Arthur Laing Bridge stands today, are three villages of the Musqueam tribes. Cedar longhouses made of massive posts and planks split with antler wedges stand out over the bluff facing west. Inside the houses, families roast salmon held securely in split skewers over the fire. Children dip fish eggs into clam shells filled with seal oil, and enjoy a relish made from the green tips of salmonberry shoots. Some members of the tribe set out in cedar canoes to fish the abundant runs of Eulachon that are now migrating up the Fraser River. Some of these fish will be eaten, but most will be used to produce oil. Meanwhile, hunters prepare their harpoons for the inevitable seals and porpoises that follow the Eulachon into the estuary. Long harpoons are also used to probe the murky river bottom in search of the great sturgeon which can weigh hundreds of kilograms. Others are busy setting stationary traps out on the shallow mudflats. They are taking advantage of the tidal ebb and flow to bring great numbers of flat fish such as Starry Flounder into their traps. As the summer progresses, the Musqueam paddle their canoes to their summer camps along the river banks. Leaving the North Arm, they set up camp on the Main Arm where Steveston is now, and position themselves for the immense numbers of salmon that will soon come up the river. Other tribes, at the invitation of the host tribe and during an abundant salmon cycle, also derive their food, shelter, and clothing from the estuary. Neighbouring tribes from upstream of the Fraser River, from other areas along the lower mainland, from the northern and southern coast, and from Vancouver Island, journey all the way to the Fraser Estuary to set up summer camps for the great congregations of Sockeye Salmon. ** This summary drawn from: FREMP, 1994; FREMP, 1996; Dorcey, 1991; and COV, 1998. Thesis 2000 5 Fraser River Greenway This Chapter will draw from this image of the North Fraser River to establish the context of the project site. A brief historical resume of the North Fraser River is important to establish a background of use and growth along these shores. Just as the indigenous people were aware of the vastness of the Fraser River despite a largely localized use, this section will seek to address both physical and policy-based context at a variety of scales. This peeling away of layers from broad regional based studies to highly localized information will provide a contextual study that leads to a rich design based on a more holistic interpretation of the site. A BRIEF HISTORICAL CONTEXT In spite of harvesting by several tribes, and even by the regular summer visitors from Vancouver Island, the renewable resources of the estuary were sustained for thousands of years. The tribes using the Fraser Estuary considered it a highly valuable area because of the large concentration of edible resources, and an active aboriginal food fishery has remained to the present time (FREMP, 1996). The industrial heritage of the North Arm of the Fraser River begins with European settlement in the 1880's. The Fraser was not only seen as a route inland, but as a rich resource for exploitation and the attainment of wealth (Dorcey, 1991). The River was viewed as the great "highway" to the interior of British Columbia, offering a route of travel and of export. By the early 1900's, the European settlement along the shores of the North Fraser was increasing rapidly (COV, 1998). Wood processing operations, canneries, barrel-making, and other resource-dependent industries were beginning to establish themselves in response to new markets both within the Colonies and in Europe (FREMP, 1996; Dprcey, 1991). From the 1920's to the 1970's, water-dependent industries developed in specific and discreet locations along the Fraser (FREMP, 1996). Locations were largely based on security from flooding, shelter from large woody debris floating downstream, and accessibility for ships (FREMP, 1994). Industry along the Fraser depended on this waterway for its access to resources and markets. As time progressed new industry found locations along much of this great body of water. Thesis 2000 6 Fraser River Greenway Attracted by heavy industrial traffic and shipping volumes, industries that were not necessarily dependent on water began to fill in the marginal spaces along the banks of the North Fraser (COV, 1998). Steel manufacturers, concrete producers, and other heavy industry made their home on the North arm, creating a continuous ribbon of development in the place of the natural estuary environment that had occurred here for thousands of years (Blueways, 1999). Indeed, nearly all archaeological sites and historical locations on the North Arm have been destroyed by encroaching industry, with the Musqueam reserve near Blenheim Street being one of the few remaining non-industrial areas fronting the North Fraser (Blueways, 1999). The industries that helped to bring the North Fraser River into prominence are the same elements that have effectively destroyed much of the ecological bounty that was its original source of industrial use and appeal. PHYSICAL CONTEXT NATIONAL and PROVINCIAL S C A L E The Fraser River is the largest river in British Columbia, with the greatest drainage area of all rivers in Western Canada. It drains an area of 233,000 square kilometers, creating a watershed that is effectively larger than all of Great Britain (Healey, 1997). The Fraser River makes its debut in Mount Robson Provincial Park in the Northern Rocky Mountains and continues to flow for a length of 1,378 kilometers (FREMP, 1994). Along its route it is fed by and feeds the Nechako, Quesnel, Thompson, and Chilko River's, as well as many other major and minor tributaries (CCS, 1992). The river flows from the northern portions of the province southward, finally emptying into the Pacific at the extraordinary flood plain that marks the home of Vancouver, Richmond, and Delta. Where the Fraser meets the Pacific, a rich and diverse estuarine environment exists, that has an ability to support habitat found in few other places in the world (Healey: 1997). This estuarine environment occurs with the blending of both fresh and salt waters, providing rich environmental conditions and conditions which encourage the development of industry that is based largely on these interface conditions (FREMP, 1994). It is this massive collision of ecology, habitat, Thesis 2000 7 Fraser River Greenway density, and industry on an international scale that presents such an exciting opportunity for design exploration. REGIONAL S C A L E ; THE LOWER MAINLAND The Fraser River Estuary The Fraser River Estuary is the largest estuary along any of-Canada's ocean coastlines, making this area host to events of international significance (Blueways, 1998; F R E M P , 1994). It has an incredibly high level of biological diversity due to the mixing of fresh and salt water through the year, the varieties of sediment type (silt, sand, and small gravels), the extensive and convoluted shoreline that forms as a result of deltaic deposition, and the timing and extent of water saturation in the estuary (Healey, 1997; F R E M P , 1994). The creation of diversity is further aided by climate with a mean annual temperature of 10 degrees and between 850 and 1000 millimeters of rain annually. This climate acts to promote environmental conduciveness to the species living in the saline environment (COV, 1998). As well, the Fraser River Estuary has global significance as it hosts the great migratory bird flights of the Pacific Flyway and is home to the largest Pacific salmon migration cycle on North America's Pacific coast. A partial list provides some insight into the capacity of the estuary to house a great abundance of habitat and indicator species (FREMP, 1994): 3 4 6 2 5 7 1 Salmon: Waterfowl: Sea Lions: Sturgeon: Invertebrates: Eulachon: Raptors: six species of Pacific salmon within the Estuary small oil-rich fish valuable as a habitat species protected species of large primitive fish over 300 taxa are found within the Estuary highest wintering population in Canada; 1.4 million Birds in annual migration (Butler & Campbell) supports many endangered species year-round attracted April and May by Eulachon run Thesis 2000 8 Fraser River Greenway It is astonishing to realize that this great environmental condition occurs immediately within one of the largest urban centers in North America, with the same waters being used intensively for industry and habitation. While the aquatic, avian, and terrestrial species of the estuary attract international attention, the vegetative habitat that acts as a home to these species is often overlooked. Perhaps due to this lower level of awareness, there is some confusion as to the actual type of vegetation that exists in the Estuary. As a result, many economic interests speak of saving specific habitat blocks that will not interfere with their operations, while forsaking others in the mistake that all habitat along the foreshore environment is the same (FREMP, 1994). This is a myth, as the Fraser River consists of five different vegetative zones, and while many of these look the same, they perform immensely diverse functions that together make the ecological system complete (FREMP, 1994). 1. Marshes: - most extensive and productive habitat - characterized by cattails and bulrushes - important bird and fish habitats 2. Tidal Flats: - expanses of sand or mud within the tidal zone - home to many valuable invertebrates 3. Sloughs: - slow-flowing, shallow water habitat - protected from direct water flow - higher temperatures ideal for fish rearing 4. Floodplain Forests: - exist where dykes have not been built - play an important role in retaining and treating - excess runoff and purify water 5. River Channel: - abundant invertebrate life living within the sediments on the river-sides and bottoms While some forms of habitat are more important or fragile than others, all are necessary to maintain a cohesive ecological foundation for the Estuary, as such the Fraser River Estuary management Program (FREMP) has developed to provide a voice for the ecological concerns that have been placed upon the River. In 1994, FREMP's Estuary Management Plan showed that the abundance, distribution, and variety of Thesis 2000 9 Fraser River Greenway species in the urban foreshore environment has changed significantly over the last 100 years. The loss of natural habitats as a result of dyking, draining, filling, and dredging activities on the North Arm alone have resulted in an estimated seventy percent loss of wetlands. Between 1967 and 1982 alone, "...eleven percent of all natural wetlands in the Lower Fraser Valley were permanently altered." (Environment Canada, 1986.) F R E M P has established a classification or coding system that begins to recognize the value of particular blocks of the Fraser. The foundation of this habitat classification system is based on fish species as indicators of ecological health and importance. While they do not consider other indicator species in this classification, it does provide a valid reference for ecological assessment and is currently the document most cited and supported in municipal and provincial conservation policy. As such, it will be the system that will be considered when addressing foreshore design opportunities. Briefly, the classification system is as follows (FREMP, 1994): CLASSIFICATION OR CODING REQUIREMENTS FOR DEVELOPMENT Red Highly Productive Habitat No development permitted unless mitigation can be applied to ensure that no alteration or alienation to existing habitats will occur. Yellow Moderately Productive Habitat Development permitted subject to satisfactory mitigation and/or compensation. Green Low Productive Habitat Development permitted subject to environmentally sound design and timing restrictions. It is important to note that, while there are varying degrees of development permitted in each of the zones, no zone is able to develop without some form of regulation, design parameters, and timing restrictions - all of which play a key role in the design process to follow. A more comprehensive discussion of F R E M P environmental policy will be discussed in the "policy" section of this chapter. Thesis 2000 10 Fraser River Greenway Tidal Influence and River Flow Water in the Lower Fraser River is a function of both tides and discharge. Tides in the Strait of Georgia can affect water levels in the Fraser as far upstream as Chilliwack (90km) during low flow periods, and up to Annacis Island during peak flow periods (25km) (FREMP, 1994; F R E M P , 1996). This incoming tide creates an unusual phenomenon called a "salt wedge". This situation occurs when the heavier salt water is being pushed inward along the base of the Fraser by high tide flows, thus creating a "wedge" of faster moving water at the base of the River (Bellnet, 1999). This has important shipping implications, as large boats can move inland faster with limited assistance from Tugboats. This reduces both time and cost of transport (FREMP, 1994). During the spring tides, this wedge can push boats as far as Annacis Island, which is the terminus for many large-scale shipping and navigational needs. Over-riding the salt wedge is an annual mean discharge of 3,400 cubic meters per second - a difficult drag for large shipping-based industry to overcome without the tidal flow and' wedge conditions in the Fraser (FREMP, 1994). Sedimentation Vital to the establishment of Vancouver along the Fraser River is the deltaic activity that occurs at the outlet of the River. The Fraser River carries massive amounts of sediment from a variety of sources: melting glaciers, melting snowpack, and erosion of streambeds and banks (Dorcey, 1991; F R E M P , 1994). Eighty percent of this sediment load is carried to the Lower Fraser, where the finest sediment is dropped, forming what is know as the Fraser River Delta (FREMP, 1994). As important as the salt wedge is to shipping, this deltaic environment creates the specialized niche habitat that makes the Fraser River estuary one of the most ecologically diverse estuarine environments in the world. Not only is the quantity of deposition substantial, but the length of deltaic channel (up to nine kilometers beyond the River's mouth) provides a variety of brackish, marsh, and tidal environments that are used by a wide array of aquatic, avian, and terrestrial species (FREMP, 1996). Despite intensive dredging and Thesis 2000 11 Fraser River Greenway channel reconstruction, the delta continues to grow at rates up to 8.6 cubic meters per year, confirming the power of this great river (Healey, 1997). Flooding and Water Control At Hope, approximately 150 kilometers east of Vancouver, the Fraser begins to drop its heavy sediment load and swells in breadth (Healey, 1997). This flattening of the landscape continues to the Pacific, creating a vast and dangerous flood plain that must be considered when any design initiative along the Fraser is proposed. Prior to European settlement, flooding was a regular event and was relied upon in an iterant form of agriculture that depending on the fertility of the floodplain sediment (FREMP, 1994). At this time, a 200 year flood would cover Sea, Lulu, and Westham islands, most of the present delta, part of Port Coquitlam, Pitt Meadows, and parts of Surrey (FREMP, 1994; F R E M P , 1996). To alleviate these concerns and create a more stable agricultural environment, early settlers built a network of dykes. These dykes held until 1948, when massive flooding placed much of the existing Lower Mainland underwater (Luymes, 1999). Finally, in 1969, the federal-provincial Fraser River Flood Control Program was established to control future flooding (Luymes, 1999). This substantial dyking and water-control policy has strongly affected the development of habitats that relied heavily on the floodplain environment of the past (Healey, 1997). Any,planning and design endeavour in the lower Fraser must accommodate the policies of this program as well as the cumulative effects of water control structures. LOCAL S C A L E ; THE SITE When the Fraser River reaches Annacis Island in New Westminster, it breaks into three arms: The North, the Middle, and the Main Arm. The North Arm shapes the Southern boundary of the City of Vancouver. Like the Burrard Inlet on the North border of Vancouver, the North Arm of the North Fraser River sustains important port related activity (NFPA, 1999). Over twenty-five industries operate along the North Arm within the City of Vancouver limits (Blueways, 1999; F R E M P , 1996). The River itself is used for major log-booming operations, and as a commercial and recreational transportation Thesis 2000 12 Fraser River Greenway corridor (NFPA, 1999). Other major activities associated with the foreshore environment are residential and recreational. These two elements form much of the stress currently being placed upon the River. Several communities, such as the new RivTow and Lighthouse Drive Developments, presently border the River, as a result of high land and real estate values associated with waterfront living (NFPA, 1999). As well, there is considerable public access to parks, riverfront walkways, and golf courses along the shoreline between Burnaby and the study site. These uses form an environment of exploitation on this resource-rich waterway. As such, some level of control or restraint must be present. While not attempting to discuss policy issues in this section, it must be understood that many recreational opportunities have been established in a rather informal way, and have few regulations or restrictions governing them (FREMP, 1996). Conversely, industry and residential development is heavily regulated by both Municipal bylaw, F R E M P , North Fraser Port Authority (NFPA), and Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) requirements (see "policy" section later this chapter) (FREMP, 1994; COV, 1995; Blueways, 1998; NFPA, 1999). As such, the formation of a more formalized recreational environment that interweaves itself with these other concerns is an imperative in the future growth of foreshore activity along the Fraser. This concern for stewardship along the Fraser is often given credence by the disappearance of spawning salmon along the North Arm (FREMP, 1996). This natural environment is at great risk when human activities are not carefully monitored and controlled. While the ethic of environmental stewardship is growing and well appreciated in the Lower Mainland, simple love of the River cannot save it from heavy and often careless exploitations of its economic and residential assets. This is apparent not only by a loss of diversity within the water's of the Fraser, but also by the. loss of diversity along the water's edge (FREMP, 1996). An emphasis on tidier, more characteristically urban shorelines has altered the character of our waterfronts and reduced the size and number of small scale marine, industrial, and commercial activities (Blueways, 1998). Increased competition for water-front development lots recently vacated by industry has created a demand economy favouring "higher value uses" such as large scale residential development (NFPA, 1999). However, it is this desire to be Thesis 2000 13 Fraser River Greenway near water that has also spawned a greenways initiative by the City of Vancouver for the Fraser foreshore (COV, 1995). While much of this, discussion exists under the context of policy, it is useful to discuss the physical parameters of the site that will accommodate such a public development in a landscape often dictated by private interests. Physical Environment of the Greenway Under the current City of Vancouver Greenways Initiative established in 1995, The Fraser River Trail will be Vancouver's only river Greenway. The trail will "...proceed east-west along the north shore of the North Arm of the Fraser River, and will connect directly to Burnaby's existing trail system. The route will be a study in contrasts, parts are busy and noisy with sawmills, asphalt plants, log booms, tug boats, and other river traffic." (COV, 2000) Other parts seem slow moving and far removed from the city environment (COV, 1995). Sites of First Nations villages and early farm settlements will be located along the trail. These villages and farms marked the beginnings of industrial activity along this portion of the Fraser River - this is a heritage that continues today, with many log booming operations, wood processing, asphalt processing, and other water-related industries occupying the urban foreshore environment (NFPA, 1999). As well, the North Fraser River offers many non-industrial opportunities that make it a great waterway for an enormous diversity of users. Destinations Along the North Fraser: • The foreshore, with protected fish spawning grounds and habitat restoration efforts, that can be viewed from existing parks such as the Fraser Riverfront Park and Fraser River Park • The river environment with mud flats, remnant river edge vegetation, pioneer forest and small streams such as Vivian Creek • The public and private golf courses including Point Grey, McCleery, Marine Drive, and Fraserview with substantial views of the river and the delta • Southland's, the last agriculturally zoned lands in Vancouver proper Thesis 2000 14 Fraser River Greenway • The parks including Fraser River, Gladstone, Riverside, and Fraser Riverfront with recreational amenities including fishing docks, walkways, bike paths, and playing fields. These parks represent an average of only 0.82 hectares per one thousand residents versus the city average of 1.12 hectares per thousand residents. (COV, 1999) It is clear from this array of destinations, that the edges of the North Fraser are as complex and diverse as the urban situation that has grown against it. This imposition of the urban structure continues to press itself onto the River environment. In 1999, the City of Vancouver reassessed several industrial and commercial lands on or near the North Fraser, and rezoned certain parcels to facilitate up to four hundred residential units (COV, 1999). It is this complexity that affords an opportunity for effective and integrative design that joins as many of these diverse facets as possible into a cohesive and comprehensible corridor. Physical Environment of the Industry It is now well established that the North Arm of the North Fraser River is considered a valued industrial zone within the urban structure. The retention of this industrial base is clearly written in policy statements from the City of Vancouver, the North Fraser Port Authority, and the Fraser River Estuary Management Program. While each of these proponents of industry choose to encourage an industrial base for varying reasons, they all state the importance of a mixed economy to a city's economic and social sustainability. This imperative is driven by many physical realities of this industrial and port environment. While policy and precedents are important determinants of urban direction, it is the statistical and measurable values of these industrial lands that support the propagation of a working waterfront. Clearly, water-dependent industries are those most desired along this piece of Vancouver's Southern edge. As a result, it is necessary to define what these industries are so that their ramifications on local economy are more clearly recognized. In 1990, the Port and Industrial Development Activity Work Group established working definitions that have since been adopted by both F R E M P and the NFPA. They are: Thesis 2000 15 Fraser River Greenway 1. Marine Terminals: Ranging from facilities for local shipping to international port facilities. 2. Terminal Support and Related Uses: Such as bulk distribution and storage centers and railroad Intermodal yards. 3. Industries Requiring Waterfront Location: To facilitate the movement of raw materials and finished products. 4. Industries Requiring Occasional Access to Water: For barging and shipping. The North Arm of the Fraser River is primarily devoted to wood processing and transportation uses, as its navigational depth is only 4.5 metres (FREMP, 1994). This depth is only sufficient to serve coastal and riverine traffic such as tugboats, barges, commercial fishing craft, and recreational craft. Despite these limitations in large cargo capacity, wood processing alone grosses over $650 million dollars per year for the North Arm, while providing 9,400 direct jobs (FREMP, 1994). Wood processing in conjunction with other primary industries such as aggregate and concrete producers, ship-building and repair, and barging combine to have a huge economic impact on the provincial Gross Domestic Product (FREMP, 1994; NFPA, 2000). In 1989, all industrial activity in the North Fraser Harbour grossed 1.04 billion dollars in revenue (NFPA, 2000). These numbers reflect the economic power of the Fraser River frontage lands, and should validate the necessity for industrial retention given its potential for employment, revenue, and tax-base. However, as of 1990, Dorcey (1991) illustrates that Vancouver represented only 2.7% of resource-based industries in Canada (which accounts for only 0.37% of provincial employment). This is compared to the Interior of the province, which holds 15% of resource-based industries and 0.89% of provincial employment. Victoria also does better than Vancouver, with 3 .5% of Canada's share of resource-based industry, comprising an astonishing 0.69% of all provincial employment (Dorcey, 1991). Thesis 2000 16 Fraser River Greenway The industrial areas between the North Fraser and Marine Drive to its North consist of a diversity of use. Many of these industries are indirectly involved with waterfront industries in a secondary processing capacity, or are dependent on the river for shipping and barging facilities (COV, 1999). When these lands are taken into consideration, the area between Arthur Laing Bridge and Knight Street effectively represents nearly one quarter of the city's total industrial land base (688 hectares) (COV, 1999). Marine Drive alone is "...home to 418 firms providing 9,460 jobs. Proportionally, these represent 2 0 % of all firms and 2 0 % of all jobs in industrial lands city wide (COV, 1999). With such a high proportion of the industrial work-force being based within the study site, the imperative of integration and preservation is made even more clear and gives an urgency to the success of any mixed use plan for the region. POLICY CONTEXT: The North Fraser River, its estuary, and its foreshore are governed intensively by four different bodies, often with differing goals and objectives for the use of water-rights, development policy, and habitat protection. Just like the discussion concerning the physical context of the site, these governing bodies can be categorized and discussed by order of their scale. Again, the discussion will begin at the broadest scale, that of National regulation, and will descend in focus to the site dependent scale of the North Fraser itself. The Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) governs all water related activities from a Federal level, with their utmost concern being the waterway itself, versus the shore environment (DFO, 2000). The Fraser River Estuary Management Program (FREMP) is a group created to represent the opportunities and constraints of the Fraser River in its entirety. While much of their work is dedicated to the habitat and ecological concerns of the Lower Mainland, their reach extends from the foot of the river to its headwaters (FREMP, 1994). The North Fraser Port Authority (NFPA) governs industrial traffic in the North and Middle Arms of the North Fraser River. While they primarily represent the industrial and economic concerns of the River, they are in the Thesis 2000 17 Fraser River Greenway formative stages of developing a rather substantial environmental and recreational policy (NFPA, 1999). Finally, the City of Vancouver Planning Department is responsible for zoning and land-use management along the North Shore of the North Arm of the Fraser River (COV, 1999). This is a direct connection to the study site, and therefore offers a body of policy that directly influences any design initiative. Through the Blueways division, this policy is applied exclusively to waterfront development, ecology, and recreation (Blueways, 1998). This fragile balance of diverse policy and legislation is of utmost importance to the sustainability of the North Fraser River. It is the decisions made by these parties and their ability to cooperate with one another that will ensure the River does not exceed its habitat carrying capacity, while ideally meeting the needs of all users. NATIONAL S C A L E - THE DEPARTMENT OF FISHERIES AND O C E A N S (DFO) Vision: Safe, health productive waters and aquatic ecosystems, for the benefit of future generations, by maintaining the highest possible standards to Canadians. (DFO: 2000) The Department of Fisheries and Oceans does not play a huge role in the development of this thesis project. However, given their federal position, the DFO requires some consideration when proposing any development that may alter or affect the habitat environment of the North Fraser. As well, the DFO is responsible for the policing of all navigable waterways by virtue of the Canadian Coast Guard (CG, 1999). Besides the Coast Guard and Habitat Divisions, there are six other components that round out the responsibilities of the DFO. They are: Aboriginal Fisheries, Communications, Conservation and Protection, Oceans, and Science (DFO, 2000). Each of these divisions will be discussed briefly in order of their implication to the thesis project and study site. Thesis 2000 18 Fraser River Greenway Communications While habitat and conservation policies are crucial to any design on the North Fraser River, the issue of communication is a key component when analyzing federal policy. Regulation and control from this broad-scale body are often administratively, rather than physically, implemented. As a result, it is the communication between the DFO and more directly involved agencies that ensures all policies are dealt with effectively. The Communication element of the DFO is the source of all Ministerial statements, press releases, departmental initiatives, and other documents that directly effect the functioning of public waterways (DFO, 2000). Groups such as F R E M P and the NFPA must be versed in these initiatives and consulted in their development. If not, there is potential for confusion, misinterpretation, and error in design and implementation that could adversely affect habitat and industrial programs applied at the local scale. An excellent example was the Fraser River Action Plan developed and undertaken by the DFO to assess the environmental health of the Fraser (FREMP, 1994). It was this plan that illustrated the need for the development of "A Living Working River - An Estuary Management Plan for the Fraser River", the guiding document for all F R E M P initiatives (FREMP, 1994). Habitat and Enhancement Under DFO policy, habitat enhancement normally involves the "...protection and restoration offish and fish habitat." (DFO, 2000) This is inclusive of spawning grounds and habitat enhancement to further promote the establishment or reestablishment of fish populations. It is under this component that the DFO targets a fifty percent increase in habitat productivity in the Fraser to support projected increases in Chinook stocks (FREMP, 1994). Much of this increased productivity will occur in the upper reaches of the Fraser, as the DFO utilizes a system of "habitat-banking" to establish new habitat projects. Simply stated, habitat-banking is the process whereby habitat lands of lesser value are given over to industrial or developmental demands. The area and productivity of this land is then calculated and placed in the "bank". The DFO then takes this number and doubles it, thereby replacing the lost portion of habitat land with an area of Thesis 2000 19 Fraser River Greenway double value elsewhere. There is also a stewardship and public education component. These initiatives are often undertaken on behalf of the DFO by other governing bodies with support and funding from the DFO (DFO, 2000). This level of resource planning and protection is largely a management policy with a limited design component - a component that fulfilled mostly under cooperation with F R E M P habitat restoration initiatives (FREMP, 1994). Fisheries Management The fish component of all Habitat and Enhancement management plans are published under Fisheries Management (DFO, 2000). This body is largely responsible for the governing and enforcement of all recreational and commercial fishing regulations that occur on federal bodies of water. The promotion of knowledge concerning general species and fisheries information, as well as establishing respective fishing seasons, is done in conjunction with this enforcement agency (DFO, 2000). Again, this division is primarily policy based and does not offer design initiatives or physical solutions to identified problems or breaches of regulation. A design initiative that supports DFO fisheries regulation is likely to be encouraged at the federal level, as the design supports DFO administrative mandates. Conservation and Protection Where Fisheries Management is concerned with the administration of fishery rules and regulations, the Conservation and Protection branch is the DFO's body of enforcement (DFO, 2000). The Conservation and Protection Branch works with the Coast Guard and other waterway agencies such as the North Fraser Port Authority and F R E M P to report and control violations on the water (NFPA, 2000, DFO, 2000). Training and recruitment of DFO employees is done under the mandate of Conservation and Protection, to ensure that staff is knowledgeable in waterway ecology and sustainability (DFO, 2000). This branch may then be seen as a public liaison body that mitigates between proposed local design endeavours and federal approval when public waterways are concerned. Thesis 2000 Fraser River Greenway Aboriginal Fisheries Aboriginal Fisheries may not appear to be of direct concern to the design proposal due to the lack of any aboriginal claims or traditional use status on the site itself. However, the design area is within one kilometer of the Musqueam Indian Reserve that lies between the Arthur Laing Bridge and Pacific Spirit Park. It is therefore important to understand and respect federal policy which implements "...strategies, agreements, and programs to ensure that obligations to First Nations are met for food, social, and ceremonial purposes." (DFO, 2000) Negative design initiatives that occur on industrial water bodies could directly affect the capacity of a waterway to meet this DFO requirement. Canadian Coast Guard As stated in the introduction, the Canadian Coast Guard is an enforcement agency primarily concerned with waterway traffic. While it does monitor and seek to protect the marine environment, its primary concern is to facilitate the use of waters for shipping, recreation, and fishing (DFO, 2000). As well, they offer expertise in domestic and international issues that may be too complex or large for a local agency (DFO, 2000). This level of enforcement is a critical subsidiary element in land-use planning and design that seeks to increase or sustain a high level of industrial use and traffic. This watchdog capacity would appear to allow for the controlled and successful integration of both high traffic volumes and high ecological concerns. The Coast Guard as both a habitat and human protection agency is critical to the prolonged sustainability o f t h e N A F R . Oceans This realm of the DFO is concerned with the enforcement of the Oceans Act and is perhaps the most visible element of the DFO in the Lower Mainland (DFO, 2000). While the Ocean Act affects the North Fraser River at its outlet to the Pacific, the study Thesis 2000 21 Fraser River Greenway site lies further inland. Nonetheless, it is important to respect the Integrated Coastal Zone Management policy of the DFO (DFO, 2000). The mouth of the North Fraser and its estuary are defined as both a navigable industrial waterway and a sensitive ecosystem. Thus, the conservation element is activated by the Conservation, and Habitat components of the DFO and applied to this Ocean/River interface environment (DFO, 2000). It should be the responsibility of any inland design initiative to respect these concerns and seek design solutions with the same conservation imperative. Science While primarily a legislative, administrative, and enforcement body, the DFO supports and funds many scientific initiatives that occur on public water bodies (DFO, 2000). This funding has aided many local conservation and scientific groups in studies concerning the North Fraser River, thereby providing much of the statistical information that will become relevant in the design initiative to follow (FREMP, 1994; F R E M P , 1996; FRC , 1999). These scientific endeavours also relate to the educational and interpretive goals of the thesis design, by providing much of the information that is used to enhance awareness of the North Fraser environment. PROVINCIAL S C A L E - F R A S E R RIVER ESTUARY M A N A G E M E N T P R O G R A M (FREMP) Vision: Improve environmental quality in the Fraser River estuary while providing economic development opportunities and sustaining the quality of life in and around the estuary. Any proposal taking on the design of the North Fraser River or its foreshore and estuary requires the support of the Fraser River Estuary Management Program. F R E M P is a cooperative effort among federal, provincial, and local governments to coordinate planning and decision making that involves human activity in the estuary (FREMP: 1994). It provides an excellent framework upon which to build the thesis project, as FREMP's focus isthe integration of the ecological, industrial, and human life within the estuary environment. Thesis 2000 22 Fraser River Greenway In August of 1994, F R E M P finalized "A Living Working River - An Estuary Management Plan for the Fraser River". This Plan is the equivalent of an Official Community Plan for a municipality, in that it provides policy that will shape future development along the waterway. This policy will be expounded in greater detail in later discussions of design processes and strategies. Through the Plan, habitat management and recreation activities are integrated with strategies for log management, navigation and dredging, water quality improvement, and urban and water-dependent industrial development, including supporting infrastructure linkages (FREMP, 1994). This policy document is broad in scope and little is concerned with detailed design. The Plan works by merely high-lighting zones and areas based on ecological, avian, and aquatic sensitivity and establishing ground rules for those zones. It recognizes the industrial necessity of the river in Vancouver's economy, and encourages the integration of recreation as a means for environmentally friendly transportation and as an opportunity for educational awareness (one of the primary mandates of the F R E M P awareness policy) (FREMP, 1996). By integrating recreational access with educational access, F R E M P policy can support active recreation and environmental education in the North Arm of the Fraser River. The Management Plan contains "...targets and actions for six action programs under two major themes." (FREMP, 1994) The two themes are: Environmental Protection and Human Activities. Under the auspices of Environmental Protection are, 1. Water Quality Management, and 2. Fish and Wildlife Habitat. Both of these action programs are vital to the thesis design and should be implemented in order to achieve ecological sustainability. Of the four action plans that fall under the theme of Human Activities, two bear direct influence on the thesis design: 1. Industrial and Urban Development, and 2. Recreation. Again, the specifics of these policies will be exemplified in the design process, but it is important to note that F R E M P advocates the union of public and private spheres within the industrial grounds of the North Arm of the North Fraser. Thesis 2000 23 Fraser River Greenway Brief on Ecological Policy Water quality is at the heart of F R E M P ecological policy, as it is a key determinant in the health of any estuary environment. While the policy is primarily dedicated to the monitoring and testing of water for fecal, mineral, oil-based, and bacterial contamination, there is an element that eludes to design possibility (FREMP, 1994). The control of pollutants entering the river (primarily point source) is an issue that can be mitigated and controlled in industrial development with proper runoff and disposal remediation; a challenge that should be addressed by the design task. As well, F R E M P promotes the undertaking of "...habitat improvement projects and research and demonstration projects for habitat restoration and creation..." (FREMP, 1994). This action is both desirable and attainable through sustainable design initiatives. This restoration and preservation must begin with the identification of sensitive lands with high ecological value, in order that they be secured for long-term tenure (FREMP, 1994). These lands will then be amenable to a sensitive union of recreational open space and conservation planning. All other development decisions will be subject to survey and assessment under the F R E M P Habitat Classification System as discussed earlier. This system seeks not only to define the capacity of lands to support development, but seeks to involve multiple organizations in the process. Through the selective classification of lands, new possibilities are available to scientific or research input, municipal parks planning, private sector development, etc. (FREMP, 1994). Brief on Industrial Policy It is important to recognize landscape design along the North Fraser as a tool for industrial design. The reassessment of this waterfront in terms of its industrial and ecological capacity will illustrate the North Fraser's vulnerability to urban activities, and highlight solutions that will perhaps soften these barriers (FREMP, 1996). F R E M P seeks to illustrate that this waterway is a resource that is likely more valuable than the distant "wilderness" that surrounds Vancouver. The North Fraser has a capacity for both Thesis 2000 24 Fraser River Greenway economy and ecology that does not exist anywhere else in the Lower Mainland (Dorcey, 1991). F R E M P policy statements addressing foreshore development and zoning (design relevance discussed in chapter four) will introduce people to the value of industry in Vancouver's economy (FREMP, 1994; F R E M P , 1996). In so doing, it will also provide the opportunity for industry to showcase environmentally friendly production techniques (as is illustrated by the new Kent Asphalt Plant at Knight Street) (COV, 1999). This addresses F R E M P S policy for the promotion of developments that are resource dependent and compatible with the river and other local uses. These initiatives are all to be undertaken using the recommendations found in Best Management Practices for industrial design (FREMP, 1994; F R E M P , 1996). In order to promote a level of industrial growth that is compatible with the River's ecological health, the Plan calls for the purchasing and holding of land at key industrial "nodes". This is done in order to secure critical development sites from residential influences (FREMP, 1994). Again, the Kent Asphalt Plant was developed as a nodal prototype under F R E M P and City policy to articulate the ability of differing levels of agency to work together, and to begin this acquisition and retention of key industrial points (COV, 1999). Brief on Recreational and Cultural Policy When dealing with the recreational policy of the F R E M P program, there is some contention. F R E M P proposes the formation of "recreation units" that consist of areas with "...similar recreational or geographic features." They further this by promoting the development of linear recreational corridors that link principle sites within the unit. While these proposed units are viable ecological and recreational assets to the urban foreshore environment, F R E M P fails to recognize the vital connections that need to occur between units. It is important to encourage this policy of linear units that provide "...public access with minimal use of land", but it is also important to move beyond the constraints that F R E M P has perhaps placed upon the ecological integrity of their vision. As proposed by the Plan, educational and cultural integration will occur with special design consideration given to identified First Nations settlements, significant early farm settlements, and special ecological zones (FREMP, 1996). While there are Thesis 2000 25 Fraser River Greenway many possibilities for implementation, F R E M P policy currently suggests the installation of interpretive signs, the preparation of brochures about habitat improvement, the support of public festivals, and an increase other programmed events (FREMP, 1994; F R E M P , 1996). With education, recreation, and industry integrated in the context of sustainable design, the proposed thesis project can create both useful and enjoyable space, while promoting an ethic of mixed incremental growth. REGIONAL S C A L E - THE NORTH F R A S E R PORT AUTHORITY (NFPA) Vision: Our mission is to provide innovative and responsible leadership in the administration of the North Arm's river highway and to ensure that all development enhances the economic opportunity, recreational potential, and environmental integrity of the area. In support of this mission, Port North Fraser will work with other public and private organizations as partners in areas of mutual interest. The North Fraser Port Authority governs Port North Fraser, which was -established in 1913 under the North Fraser Harbour Commissioners Act as a formal body to organize marine traffic in a highly industrialized area (NFPA, 2000). The NFPA is most noted for its responsibility as an administrator of all marine traffic in the North and Middle Arms of the North Fraser. Under this guise, they enforce all marine transport regulations as dictated by the Canadian Coast Guard and other enforcement agencies (NFPA, 2000). Beyond this most obvious and historical role, the NFPA is becoming increasingly involved in the management of land areas within the realm of its administration. As a result, the study site falls directly within the NFPA's administrative and land-use planning zone. Under section 13.0 of the Port Authority Act, the NFPA is mandated to: Thesis 2000 26 Fraser River Greenway ".. .regulate and control the use and development of all land, buildings, and property within the limits of the Harbour, and. . . to manage and operate the Harbour in a manner that ensures the integrity and efficiency of the port system and the optimum deployment of resources, which are of critical importance to the well being of the B.C. and Canadian economies." (NFPA, 2000). This mandate supports the hypothesis that resource-dependent industry is a desirable attribute to the economic health of the City. However, it fails to promote any notion of environmental well being to correspond with this industrial/economic imperative. With the reality of ecological concern on the North Fraser, the NFPA has pursued two congruent plans: The North Fraser Harbour Management Plan and the Port North Fraser Land Use Plan Synopsis. The North Fraser Harbour Management Plan In order to approach issue of ecological integrity within their zone of administration, the NFPA has established, in conjunction with the DFO, the North Fraser Harbour Environmental Management Plan (NFPA, 2000). The ecological criteria used to develop this plan are directly usurped from FREMP's Estuary Management Plan (NFPA, 1999). The NFPA have adopted FREMP's Habitat Management Units (HMU's), and categorized them in accordance to FREMP's three-tier habitat classification scheme (NFPA, 2000). With the NFPA administering F R E M P policy approaches, under the guidance and supervision of the DFO, a truly representational approach has been taken that allows embodiment of each participating group's area of specialization. While this Environmental Management Plan is little more than ten years old, its present policy is successfully founded upon the creation of a habitat compensation bank administered directly by the NFPA (NFPA, 2000). A Habitat Compensation Bank is defined as "...an agreed upon mechanism or process where habitat is developed for the purpose of providing compensation for future waterfront development projects requiring compensation." (NFPA, 2000). It is interesting to note that this kind of mechanism may fit itself successfully into FREMP's policy of nodal industrial development as discussed previously. This form of habitat preservation and redevelopment was created for four reasons: 1. It does not preclude Thesis 2000 27 Fraser River Greenway industrial development in its attempts to preserve the environment; 2. Viable habitat compensation is created in advance of a development proposals (it is inclusionary of both habitat and industry); 3. It offers advantages of scale in that larger habitat areas are more ecologically beneficial than scattered small areas; and 4. It complements DFO's national fish habitat policy (no net loss principle) (NFPA, 2000). The Port North Fraser Land Use Plan Synopsis This plan is a current objective for the North Fraser Port Authority and is currently in its draft stage. However, it is complete enough to provide direct relevance to the thesis project, as the draft goes to print June 30, 2000 (NFPA, 1999). The plan is "...to take into account the environmental, economic, and social implications of all land use planning decisions and respect all historical precedents until such time as a redevelopment or a vacation of a given property occurs." (NFPA, 1999). As it approaches its completion, it is clear that the plan has used FREMP's notion of the "Living Working River" as its central principle. In this regard, it is pursuing an inclusive policy which does not favour industrial development, but balances it with commercial, residential, recreational, and conservation uses (NFPA, 1999). From this notion stems the plan's stated goals (NFPA, 1999): 1. Everyone working together. 2. Achieving sustainable land use. 3. Coordinating industrial activity: Preserving the North Arm as a major river highway. 4. Environmental health: The measure of NFPA's success. 5. Increasing the effectiveness of management practices. 6. Utilizing innovative revenue sources. From these goals, the NFPA has been able to establish three major plan elements that will allow the successful attainment of the above goals (NFPA, 1999). First and foremost is the "...identification of Port Related Economic Development Areas (EDA's) designed to identify and protect both existing and future areas of water oriented industrial or commercial nodes and log storage areas on the river." (NFPA, 1999). Thesis 2000 28. Fraser River Greenway These EDA's are not unlike FREMP's notion of nodal development for industrial sites, and as such these policy's can be seen as complementary. This complementary nature of strategies carries onto the next plan element which re-establishes the validity of the North Fraser Harbour Environmental Management Plan. This plan element is titled Area Designation/Habitat Classification Systems and is again based exclusively on the F R E M P habitat classification scheme (NFPA, 1999). However, NFPA has added a human element to this classification scheme. Like F R E M P , they propose ecological conservation in both yellow and green zones, but unlike F R E M P , the NFPA seeks to "...marry the social with the biological..." as they attempt to coordinate upland and foreshore activities (NFPA, 1999). While there is little written on this goal, it is an objective that shows great promise in a design context and coincides neatly with a recreational component. A recreational component is discussed as the final plan element. Greenways will be a pro-active policy aimed at guiding development of public amenities along the Middle and North Arms (NFPA, 1999). The NFPA proposes linear corridors (not unlike FREMP) , but envisions them as continuous entities that move beyond recreational and ecological zones, and integrate themselves with the industrial environment (NFPA, 1999). While these corridors may not exclusively follow the river edge, this vision shows promise for a truly integrative social, ecological, and industrial environment. LOCAL S C A L E - CITY OF V A N C O U V E R PLANNING DEPARTMENT (BLUEWAYS & G R E E N W A Y S ) Vision: To create a waterfront city where land and water combine to meet recreational, environmental, and occupational needs of the City and its people. The City of Vancouver has spent large amounts of time, energy, and money on the development of its ocean-facing waterfront, with the development of the SeaSide Greenway that connects False Creek to Stanley Park and the new urban developments of Coal Harbour and Pacific Place (COV, 1999). While this recreational priority is being given to the downtown peninsula, the City has yet to realize the potential and Thesis 2000 29 Fraser River Greenway opportunities along its other great waterway - the North Fraser River (NFPA, 1999). This feature is a landscape element that has been cherished by neighbouring cities such as Port Coquitlam and New Westminster, being that the Fraser is their only opportunity for the union of a working and public waterway (Tri-Cities O C P : 1997). The North Fraser waterway has come under heavy consideration by the City of Vancouver in recent years, as the Pacific Ocean/Burrard Inlet Seawall is nearing completion, with formal implementation policy firmly in place (Greenways and Local Improvements Annual Report, 1999). As a result, the year 2000 will mark the onset of the Fraser River Greenway design process (Greenways and Local Improvements Annual Report, 1999). This greenway has been on the City of Vancouver's Greenway map since its first approval by Council in 1995, but has yet to see any active implementation (COV, 1995). As well, in 1999, a new policy-based body was introduced to the Vancouver Greenways strategy; this body was ultimately called "Blueways." The creation of such a position illustrates the City's concern for addressing the issues of bringing people to our urban waterfronts. This new planning agent is multi-faceted, as Blueways will not only look at the recreational opportunities, but will begin to address industrial uses, rezoning, private land uses, and the potential of establishing rights-of-way and easements through previously inaccessible areas adjacent to city waterways. (Blueways, 1999). The formative task of the Blueways Branch was to produce a policy-oriented document that would provide a sense of vision and direction for waterfront growth and development within the City. This document, Blueways - Guidelines and recommendations and its policy framework will form a substantial structural foundation to the thesis design. From the Blueways vision statement comes two central principles. The objective of the city is to advocate, support, and encourage: 1. Waterways and waterfronts that maximize accessibility. 2. Diversity of water based activities along the waterfront and in the water that encourage industry, commerce, recreation, and education. (Blueways, 1999) Thesis 2000 30 Fraser River Greenway This research and design project will support the Blueways initiative both in terms of precedence and design for the City of Vancouver. In so doing, it will address many of the design issues that are presently unresolved. This approach will also draw from the City's Greenways policy. While this branch has been established since late 1994, it has still left the North Fraser untouched. However, it is with great urgency that the Greenways group is beginning to look at the development of the "Fraser River Trail" (Greenways and Local Improvements Annual Report, 1999). The initiatives brought forward through the Blueways program illustrate the necessity to be pro-active and develop public waterfront access prior to the onset of encroaching residential development. Simultaneously, there have been several reports both within municipal documents (FitCity, 1998) and in the public realm (CTV News, C B C News, 1999) that illustrate a drastic decline in the physical health of our society and the lack of recreational facilities within the urban center. These two issues are mandates that the Greenways Program is designed to tackle. Subsequently, a Greenway that is both recreationally and environmentally conscientious may provide the means in which to incorporate the public realm with both the industrial and habitat requirements of the North Fraser River. A Case for Greenways Current studies show that the physical health of our society is beginning to decrease as we move past the "fitness boom" of the late 1980's (Vancouver Sun: March 1999). Other studies support this, showing a great decline in physical education enrollment at the senior secondary level of education. This encourages poor health habits that carry into adulthood. (Vancouver School Board Newsletter: December, 1999) Much of this current research highlights 1. The ease of vehicular-based transport in our society and therefore severe health and ecosystem impacts; 2. The lack of recreational opportunities within close proximity to residential areas; and 3. A reduced sense of safety in our outdoor environment. As mentioned previously, it appears that many of these issues can be mitigated or curtailed with the development of effective linear greenways (Liddle, 1997). The City of Vancouver defines a greenway as a "...green path for pedestrians and cyclists. Their Thesis 2000 31 Fraser River Greenway purpose is to expand the opportunities for urban recreation and to enhance the experience of nature and city life." (COV, 1995) This tri-lateral union of recreation, nature, and city life are three elements that often answer the growing concerns of reduced recreational activity in modern urban society (Liddle, 1997, COV, 1995). A discussion of greenways as a solution to many of the issues presented thus far is useful to understand their capacity in the context of the thesis design. From these problems, it is then possible to begin placing implementation policy into a more useful and comprehensible structure. Problem #1: Vehicular-based transport is often used as it promises to be the most effective and direct means of attaining a particular destination, without a time-based structure as represented by traditional urban transit systems (Smith and Hellmund, 1992) Solution: Greenways can be designed in ways that facilitate pedestrian and commuter priority, especially to those who live within seven kilometers of their work environment (COV, 1995). This mode of transport avoids the congestion and cost of the personal vehicle and addresses the freedom from time constraints and user fees associated with transit. Problem #2: As urban environments density, recreational opportunities within the urban core can decrease (COV, 1995). This lack of recreational opportunity is usually compounded by the implementation of user-specific park development, or small-scale garden developments that fail to truly provide opportunity for recreation (Smith and Hellmund, 1992). Solution: The idea of the greenway is that it can co-exist and be integrated with the current urban fabric. It does not require large open space or intensive facilities; rather it follows a line of best fit through the design area, allowing pedestrians priority within the urban setting. "Greenways can follow rivers, streets, beaches, abandoned railways, ridges, and ravines... they can be waterfront promenades, urban walks, environmental demonstration trails, heritage walks, and nature trails." (COV, 1995) When the Vancouver Greenways Plan is complete, the over-riding goal is to have no resident beyond a five minute walk of a greenway or greenway link. (COV, 1995) Problem #3: The urban environment is currently seen as a dangerous place in which to recreate. Parks and play areas are often vast and offer few "eyes" of protection (Jacobs, 1995). This fear is propagated by news Thesis 2000 32 Fraser River Greenway stories and television ads that promote indoor exercise as an escape from the danger that lurks outside. Solution: Greenways are designed to co-exist with the present urban structure and occur in places where there is existing activity (Lagerwey and Puncohar, 1988). Recreational corridors along streets, through working landscapes, and near residential areas are continually being observed by residents, industries, and motorists. As well, greenways are thin "ribbons" through the city that offer high visibility, a prime deterrent to crime (CPTED, 1997). Greenways become hubs of recreational activity, and are inhabited throughout the day. These three issues highlight the positive attributes of greenways in urban environments. For these reasons, the City of Vancouver has aggressively pursued implementation of a strong Greenways network. However, this implementation has proven easiest within residential environments and those areas currently being rezoned or redeveloped. (Greenways and Local Improvements Annual Report, 1999). The issue of integrating greenways within the working industrial environment in Vancouver has yet to be fully explored. This latent demand for greenway design effort and implementation, in these environments, is an appealing problem that must be addressed to provide a truly complete Greenway network. There are many documented cases of successful greenway implementation within the urban residential environment (see Appendix 1), just as there are many successful illustrations of the immersion of ecology and industry, yet few cases exist where the public can interact with nature and industry in a way that is adaptive, sharing, and considerate of all users. Adding to the challenge is the need to implement such a design in a way that is effective and affordable without drastic changes in zoning and planning policy) To guide this thesis towards a solution to these issues, a specific discussion of the municipal planning policy as determined by both the Blueways and Greenways guidelines is necessary to build a defensible framework for design. Planning and Industry Much of the urban parameters governing the foreshore and shoreline of the North Fraser River are controlled by municipal zoning bylaws. While the zoning along the River is varied, this industrial dominance has been broken over the last five years by Thesis 2000 33 Fraser River Greenway the onset of residential development (NFPA, 1999). Land acquisition by large corporate developers is the catalyst behind this change, as large sums of immediate capital gains and tax dollars are appealing conditions to promote re-zoning on previously industrial lands (CMHC, 1998). Currently, the City of Vancouver Planning department tries to govern the industrial context and development of the North Fraser through a four-armed approach: Integration, Retention, Water Traffic, and Control (Blueways, 1999). 1. Integration: Integration is a relatively new addition to current planning policy and plays an important role in this thesis project. Integration is founded on the principle of penetrating industrial areas by constructing viewing platforms and jetties to facilitate public interaction with the industrial environment (Blueways, 1999). This policy of integration was established in 1998 with the "Blueways" initiative. The motivation behind this policy initiative was the urgency to reassess the economic value of Vancouver's drastically receding industrial landbase. Waterways were determined as highly valuable lands to the industrial heritage and foundation of the City. Coinciding with this assessment, the North Fraser was identified as the most crucial node in this policy of integration (Blueways, 1999). 2. Retention: The integration and unification of the North Fraser's shoreline environment is dependent upon the enforcement of Retention under the auspices of planning policy. Retention seeks to consider the establishment of methodologies that will encourage industrial activity to remain despite rising real-estate values and property taxes (Blueways, 1999; NFPA, 2000; Healey, 1997). The policy of retention will consider establishing land banks, cross-subsidization, and/or special zoning in order to encourage the preservation of water-related industry, such as boat-building, shipping, log-booming, etc (Blueways, 1999; NFPA, 2000). Ideally, these economic strategies will keep values low on industrially zoned lands adjacent to or on the North Fraser. Not only is this a viable objective, but if such methodologies are implemented, it will be possible to attract new industries that previously found it economically impossible to operate in this environment. These land-use policies will ideally include pockets of retail uses to Thesis 2000 34 Fraser River Greenway encourage a permanent working environment and a growth in visitor numbers (Blueways, 1999; Loriing, 1994). This, in turn, would offer marketplace opportunities and other small-scale investment that would otherwise fail to occur in zoning areas biased to large lot-size and intensive occupation. 3. Water Traffic: With growing demands upon this urban waterway, it is also important to investigate issues of Water Traffic and its control. As stated earlier, the North Fraser Port Authority is looking to enact new water-use policies that will not only regulate industrial shipping uses more heavily, but will also to look at new opportunities for on-water and near-water uses (NFPA, 1999). Increased water use will inevitably create a need for industry and services along the shore that will facilitate greater userage. Foremost in this directive is the need to improve navigational and water safety through better coordination and enforcement of marine regulations (Blueways, 1999; DFO, 2000). This will ensure a safer body of water for small-scale users, recreational users, and other non-industrial traffic. On-shore opportunities that could arise from such a mandate are increasingly representative of local economies and small business ventures such as pleasure-craft fueling stations, pleasure-craft moorage, small retail, and user-oriented residential development (Blueways, 1999). 4. Control: The issue of Control is essentially the governing principle for the other three planning policy goals. Without a positive and open communication between the City of Vancouver, the Fraser River Estuary Management Program, the North Fraser Port Authority, and the Provincial Government, there will be confusion and disparity between goals, users, and uses (Blueways, 1999; NFPA, 1999; F R E M P , 1996). Many of the issues and conflicts that have occurred in the past have found resolution since 1998 with the consolidation of the NFPA, who is now the central authority on water-use in the North Arm. While the NFPA is responsible for a broad range of issues, it will act as a legitimate center for all discussion concerning development along the North Fraser and will eliminate much of the overlap and confusion that occurred with four disparate bodies (Blueways, 1999; NFPA, 2000). With Blueways policy being strongly Thesis 2000 35 Fraser River Greenway represented by the NFPA, all four bodies will have a voice; a voice that is more informed, more concise, and increasingly illustrative of all stakeholders. Planning and Environment While Blueways and the city planning department have established a rather structured and detailed policy concerning industrial development and usage along the North Fraser, they have a considerably less developed environmental policy. While this is a problem that needs to be addressed, it does leave an open framework in which the design thesis can begin to make salient recommendations. The problem with environmental legislation and governance is the diversity of voices concerned, and the inability to establish common criteria (FREMP, 1994; Healey, 1997). The City of Vancouver Planning Department often looks only at the immediate lane! base that is suitable for occupancy (COV, 1999). F R E M P is primarily concerned with the foreshore and estuarine environment of the deltaic zones, and the Department of Fisheries and Oceans is essentially concerned with the waterway itself (FREMP, 1994; DFO, 1999). Current Blueways policy addresses the environment of the waterfront under two loose mandates that seek to be inclusive, rather than exclusive of concerned parties; these two mandates are Shoreline Environment and Education (Blueways, 1999). 1. Shoreline Environment: As mentioned above, City planning policy is vague in its directives for the shoreline environment, and seeks to draw rather loosely from other governing bodies. This leads to a policy that has few real controls and enforceable regulations under municipal legislation (Blueways, 1999; COV, 1995). The policy consists of six essential goals which seek to communicate with environmentalists, educators, and city planners. They are: Thesis 2000 36 Fraser River Greenway 1. Encourage and improve environmental health of shorelines and waterbody. 2. Encourage enhancement of natural habitats in any proposal for redevelopment. 3. Develop pump-out stations for emptying holding tanks (must be cheap, accessible, and easy to use). 4. Reclaim the Western end of Mitchell Island as a nature park. 5. Adopt the FREMP habitat classification system as a means of recognizing and preserving valuable natural habitat areas. 6. Address the accumulation of wood debris throughout the North Arm. (Blueways, 1999) ** Goals highlighted in bold are most salient to the design exercise. These goals vary in specificity and lack proposals for implementation. This provides an opportunity to explore possibilities for sustainable measures of design. This lack of definition is a key factor in developing creative solutions to the North Fraser environment while respecting and incorporating existing Blueways policy. 2. Education: With a lack of public access, there have been few opportunities to educate those users of the North Fraser about the value of this great waterway both ecologically and economically. Where there is recreational infrastructure in place (the Fraserlands near Boundary Road and residential communities East of Knight Street), the development has been undertaken in a traditional fashion, with walkways and park environments that are typical of the seawall environment along the Burrard Inlet. This kind of environment, while potentially inviting to users, does little to recognize the quality of the environment, traditional uses of the River, existing uses of the river, River heritage, etc. This lack of educational structure is in part the result of an educational policy that occurs only in theory and shares no enforceable body (Blueways, 1999). Existing Blueways and Greenways policy "recommends" that education only be undertaken as a part of environmental preservation and habitat enhancement that coincides with viewing opportunities and existing public access facilities (COV, 1995; Blueways, 1999). There is no supporting policy or literature that expresses a methodology or procedure for the attainment of such objectives. As well, planning Thesis 2000 37 Fraser River Greenway policy calls for educational prerogatives to support the "Waterfront Classroom" programs as designed by both F R E M P and the Fraser River Harbour Commission (Blueways, 1999). Again, this is merely a recommendation that offers no supporting documentation or enforceability. The importance of education remains largely nondescript, in that there is allusion to its need, but no formality to its implementation. Planning and Recreation While the educational imperatives of Blueways and City Planning policy are rather limited, the iteration of recreational needs are both diverse and explicit. However, this conciseness in policy statement and site assessment is noticeably weaker in its recognition of recreational opportunities within the heavily industrial portions of the North Fraser (Blueways, 1999; NFPA, 1999). Most identified recreational opportunities are located in areas that have concurrently been rezoned for residential development. Nonetheless, a policy that stresses the importance of a recreational waterway can be applied to industrial sites, as a continuation of municipal objectives. Such a policy would be in keeping with City Greenways literature, which has called for a continuous waterfront recreational Greenway along the North Fraser since the department's formal inception in 1995 (COV, 1995). Perhaps the strength of Blueways and Greenways recreational planning policy along the North Fraser is its recognition of recreational boater needs such as moorage, dumping, and amenities (Blueways, 1999). To expedite these objectives, the existing Blueways policy has been divided into directives of Moorage and Amenities. 1. Moorage Moorage has been established as a key mandate of recreational development along the North Fraser River for two reasons: first is the potential as a revenue generator, and second is a response to the high demands for pleasure-craft moorage presently unfulfilled in Vancouver (Blueways, 1999). Both overnight transient moorage and permanent moorage are needed elements along of urban waterfronts. Accommodating this demand would provide viable income generation on public waterfronts. It can also act as a "soft" easement into the industrial foreshore where the Thesis 2000 \ 38 Fraser River Greenway interests of ecology could be integrated (Blueways, 1999). Environmentally sustainable docking and moorage facilities are a new industry, with precedents for floating and cantilevered moorage existing along the Great Lakes of Ontario and along the St. Laurence (Michaels, 1995). Infrastructure such as sewer connections, disposal facilities, and fueling facilities will open the door to small commercial ventures, while elements such as docking meters and moorage fees will generate a tax revenue without sacrificing a valuable land base (NFPA, 1999; Blueways, 1999). Currently sites under consideration are the under-utilized areas at the foot of Hudson Street, near Dearing Island, and adjacent to the Fraserlands (Blueways, 1998). However, many more opportunities may exist within the core industrial area along the North Fraser. 2. Amenities: The City of Vancouver is proposing the development of several Amenities intended to make connections between water-based tourism/recreation and the city as a whole (Blueways, 1999; COV, 1999). In the establishment of a greenway corridor, the City attempts to identify several nodal sites. These sites are usually locations of arrival, open space, or scenic quality and are intended to serve as the location for greenway amenities - washroom facilities, refreshment areas, picnic sites, parking lots, interpretive signage, etc. (Greenways, 1995). With the recognition of these areas and the siting of user amenities, the City intends the Fraser River to serve as a gateway to the City for water-based tourists just as the Burrard Inlet does on the city's Northern edge (Greenways, 1995). Considering an industrial environment as a potential tourist and recreational amenity increases the priority placed on beautification and landscape quality. Once these nodes or anchor points are established, retail and service amenities in the private realm will have the opportunity to develop in response to proposed higher user numbers and improved public infrastructure (NFPA, 1999). Early on in the planning process, some ideas specific in location and intent have already been identified by the Blueways planners: Thesis 2000 39 Fraser River Greenway 1. Consider park and/or deck between RivTow and Riverside Development. 2. Develop riverside park in Marpole near Oak Street Bridge. 3. Investigate Southlands, Hudson Street, Victoria Drive, and the Fraserlands as locations for river cruise stops. 4. Use foreshore for building a sense of community/gathering. 5. Investigate refurbishing the Celtic Shipyard into a Maritime Village as a joint City, Provincial, and Musqueam venture. (Blueways, 1999) Clearly the opportunities for recreational usage of the waterfront are both possible and desired by the municipality. S U M M A R Y AND DIRECTION: When addressing both the physical and policy-based background of the North Fraser River, it is apparent that several different public and private bodies have a stake in its development. However, despite this variety of interested groups and their individual agenda's, it is surprising to find that many of the desired results are divergent despite highly diverse strategies and initial objectives. It is also apparent that the mitigation of conflict between industry and environment is a difficult topic and few real design solutions have been offered by these agencies. In an attempt to provide a sustainable environment to the North Fraser River, it is evident that a greenway corridor may provide the buffer that addresses the apparent inability to merge these two opposing elements. When applied in its truest sense, a greenway provides a mechanism to support human movement while re-establishing environmental quality. As well, the greenway can buffer industrial uses and promote an increased awareness of the economic necessity of waterfront industry. Finally, the greenway can bring a larger number of public users to the area, meeting Vancouver's demand for increased recreational opportunities. This structure has the capacity to increase the need for amenities and services that will establish the North Fraser as an area of regional significance. This will congruently support the growth of a mixed-scale economy within an ecologically responsible setting. As such, the greenway will be the catalyst for the integration of disparate needs and common goals in a manner that is fully sustainable. Thesis 2000 40 Fraser River Greenway By merging what is now known about the physical structure of the North Fraser River and the policy that is currently in place to govern its growth, a more developed problem statement can be put forward. Initial Problem Statement: The need to illustrate (through sustainable design methodologies) that it is possible to create a waterfront greenway that mitigates the conflict between residential demands and the retention of resource-based industry, while providing opportunity for recreation, education, and subsidiary small mixed enterprise. Developed Problem Statement: Because of increased urban pressures on waterfront lands, a growing displacement of urban industry, a demand for increased recreational outlets, and the continuing loss of urban habitat, there is a need to illustrate (through sustainable design methodologies) that it is possible to create a waterfront greenway that mitigates these conflicts. Ideally, sustainable greenway design should resolve the conflict between residential demands and the retention of resource-based industry, while providing opportunity for recreation, education, subsidiary small mixed enterprise, and ecological preservation or enhancement. From this problem, a set of preliminary goals can be established that will guide the rest of the process. Goal #1: The proposed design will show that it is both necessary and desirable for the North shore of the North Fraser River between Knight Street and the Arthur Laing Bridge to become an integrated part of the Vancouver Greenways network. Goal #2: To create a design that meets the growing recreational and educational needs of the city through a sustainable approach that does not preclude the need for an industrial foreshore environment. Goal #3: To come to a well-rounded solution that embraces industrial use within a mandate of environmental care and restoration. This will come through an integration of past precedence, river ecology, historical context, existing policy statements, and sustainable development theory. Thesis 2000 41 Fraser River Greenway Goal #4: To create a design that is inclusive of the great diversity found along the North Fraser and that establishes a situation of interaction between environment, industry, and recreation, rather than a situation of segregation. Such a project could find similar solutions through separation of uses, however a multi-faceted integrative approach more fully meets the requirements of sustainable design. These goals will set forth the direction of the next chapter, as the thesis moves away from information pertinent only to the North Fraser River to more diverse information and research. External data will provide insight into urban waterfront design and offer precedence examples as possible solutions to the contextual concerns. As well, a literature review and precedent study are more effective at addressing design problems when the information can be related directly to the concerns of the North Fraser. Thesis 2000 42 Fraser River Greenway CHAPTER 2 Balance and Change in the Urban Environment As this paper moves into a new chapter, it also moves in a new direction. In this shift from site-specific background and policy to related thinking and precedent design, one must not forget the elements explored in the first chapter. When reading through the following case studies, it is important to examine these designs and apply them to the thesis site. As well, the literature review that occurs later in this chapter takes the knowledge of the site and the thinking of other designers and planners, and places these in the context of landscape, ecological, and economic theory. From this merging of site studies and external references, a synthesis of all data into a final problem, goals, and objectives is developed. This will then direct the site planning and design sections of this thesis. LEARNING F R O M THE PAST: C A S E STUDIES ON INDUSTRIAL AND RECREATIONAL DESIGN The following case studies have been selected for their ability to illustrate some of the successes and failures of recent reclamation projects. In each example, a brief explanation of the project is followed by an analysis of the important lessons to be learned. It is intended that these lessons will be applied, where possible, to the North Fraser Project Area. C A S E STUDY #1 - THE HARTFORD RIVERFRONT ** reference: Marfuggi, 1981 as in Urban Waterfronts 10. The Project: The City of Hartford, Connecticut has a history of dependency on the Connecticut River. From the time of Mark Twain and his stories of paddle wheelers and floating docks to the industrial boom of the 1950's, Hartford's economy relied on this waterfront. Thesis 2000 43 Fraser River Greenway Today, the Connecticut River lies largely forgotten. Buried behind large dykes and cut-off by rail tracks and the 1-90 Freeway, the lack of accessibility has eliminated the capacity for the River to act as a central amenity to the city. Currently the 1-90 is seen as the central problem in creating a more accessible and desirable waterfront. This four and (occasionally six) lane freeway is not just a physical barrier, but a visual barrier. With the help of a public volunteer organization called Riverfront Recapture, Inc. and the State Department of Transportation, new plans are in place to rebuild the interstate highway in order to emphasize improving access to the river. The recognition of accessibility as a key determinant in economic and social vitality is a key component in this revitalization effort. The current project, led by Riverfront Recapture, has three main goals. The first is to improve the quality of life in Greater Hartford through the creation of a continuous linear park along the river's edge. The proposed park is intended to make a variety of waterfront recreational activities more available, thereby increasing awareness of the river environment. Next, it is proposed to establish riverfront facilities that will attract visitors from outside of the region. Tourism is a key player in revenue generation, as tourists don't just spend time, but spend money thereby increasing employment and vitality. Finally, the restoration of the riverfront's significance as an economic centre is hoped to evolve from increased appreciation of the river environment. Private industry, like tourism, will generate jobs and encourage increased densification within the city's core area. Currently, the planning phase for the project is nearing completion, and the implementation of the linear recreational park will likely begin early in 2000. Lessons Learned: • For any project to be successful, it is critical to ensure that large infrastructure barriers do not prohibit easy access to the design site. The solution to the 1-90 barrier was the dropping of the elevated freeway to ground level and then spanning it with a 1.25 acre land bridge/platform. The platform will include continuous raised planted strips, serpentine seating walls, grassy areas, viewing platforms, and trees to screen the Thesis 2000 44 Fraser River Greenway highway. The platform is not designed merely as a bridge to reach the river, but as an attraction, a gateway, and a plaza itself. Rather than breaching the 1-90 as rapidly as possible, the platform will celebrate this supremacy of pedestrian over vehicle, as people move toward the river. • Several levels of governmental and non-governmental groups must begin working together to establish a project at the grassroots level. Riverfront Recapture, a non-profit organization concerned with the health and vitality of the river accepted responsibility for designing the Platform Project and leading workshops for the linear trail system. RRI was supported by the state with bond funds that allowed them to hire a professional architectural firm to design public spaces. The Connecticut Department of Transportation committed funding for the construction of the project. This multi-level tasking illustrates that a grassroots organization can be heard and their desires implemented by government if the demand and background support is available and well organized. • Increasing pedestrian activity and vitality to a neglected or forgotten area will increase the economic base of the region by attracting visitors, new enterprise, and facilitating services. Since the completion of the project, the riverfront has begun to attract many commercial and industrial interests. The increased usage of the site by recreationalists and tourists has led to the development of a support infrastructure and economy of demand along the river. While true waterfront uses are desired, many service industries are attracted to the site due to traffic volumes, scenic quality, and visitor demand. Supporting infrastructure is also starting to establish a hold along the river, with commercial water taxis and excursion boat services developing to handle the increasing pedestrian traffic. Thesis 2000 45 Fraser River Greenway C A S E STUDY #2 - PORTLAND HARBOR LAND ZONING ** reference: City of Portland, 1992 as in Urban Waterfronts 10. Plumb, 1988 as in Urban Waterfronts - Accent of Access. The Project: The City of Portland is currently dealing with many of the same demands on their waterfront as Vancouver. In response, Portland has begun planning for the preservation of a working waterfront. The goal is to retain an industrial base that will generate both jobs and long-term tax revenues for the City. This long-term vision should lead to higher capital gains and urban economic subsistence versus the short-term appeal of residential or commercial development. However, while the retention of a working port is the dominant theme, there is some impetus for a diversified waterfront that supports mixed use in special zones that are not imperative for water-based industry. To support this, the following measures have been taken: 1. Preservation of the entire perimeter of the Harbor from Tukey's Bridge to the Veteran's Memorial Bridge for berthing. 2. Recognition that property with direct water access is limited and should be reserved exclusively for marine use. 3. Allowing marine compatible use of other property that does not interfere with the activities of water-dependent users. 4. Division of the waterfront into four zones that reflect the type of berthing or land use that each zone can accommodate. 5. A renewed commitment to promoting public access to the Port for the benefit and enjoyment of its citizens and to continue to insure ecological safety through the promotion of environmentally sound practices. The key component of this plan is the establishment of special zoning blocks along the waterfront to ensure that true water-dependent uses are protected, while promoting some economic and social diversity. The Port Development Zone is designated as a zone that allows for shipping related industry. Dredging is kept to a constant, access to rail and road is easy, and access to the foreshore is kept clear. Some non-marine activities are allowed in this zone to allow some flexibility in new opportunities. These opportunities must support Thesis 2000 46 Fraser River Greenway port development uses, thereby allowing enough economic activity to retain the area's economic viability. The Central Zone is designed solely for water-dependent and water-related industry. All first floor units must have direct water-dependent needs, while all other floors must represent industry that is water-related or supports water-dependent uses. All buildings up to 100 feet behind foreshore units must contain some form of water-supporting usage. This zone will not accommodate any residential, non-marine commercial/industrial, tourism, or civic uses. Finally, a Special Use Zone was established to allow a large diversity of users, while still supporting water-dependent uses as its primary economic interest. Again, all main floor foreshore units must represent water-dependent industries, but beyond that there is considerable flexibility in occupancy. This area also supports a waterfront of nearly full public accessibility. As well, policies will be put in place to restore portions of the foreshore environment that buffer this area from residential and more intensive industrial use zones. Lessons Learned: • There is an absolute need to retain water-dependent uses as a catalyst to job creation and continued tax revenues over a long term. The recognition of water-dependent industry as a long-term investment is crucial in cities that are facing large developmental pressures near the urban core by residential and commercial interests. The simple initiation of this goal into civic policy is a crucial step in preserving the sustainability of a working harbour environment. • The development of creative zoning to retain industry is necessary, while at the same time, encouraging and supporting some mixed use to retain economic viability and public involvement. Creative zoning policies are a relatively new approach in urban planning. However, progressive cities such as Portland have begun to recognize the value that Thesis 2000 47 Fraser River Greenway mixed economies can bring to industrial environments. The use of zoning as a tool to encourage new investment and development opportunities, with a mandate of ecological concern will allow sustainable reinterpretation of working waterfronts. Ultimately, this will make them more social and interesting to those not directly involved in water-dependent industry. Mixed zoning also allows continued heavy industrial uses in a way that minimizes conflict between users. C A S E STUDY #3 - MISSION BAY, SAN FRANCISCO ** reference: Kriken, 1991 as in Bruttomesso, 1991. The Project: Mission Bay was an area of under-used and/or vacant industrial lands situated to the South of the vibrant Market District in downtown San Francisco. The owners of these lands entered into a municipal planning process in the 1970's, which continued until the early 1990's. The resultant project is representative of the changing scope of civic planning over nearly three decades and illustrates the caution that must be used when redeveloping urban waterfronts. The 1970's brought forth a plan of intensive development of office towers, hotels, and housing. This would effectively have created a "second city", completely detached in both design and spirit from the surrounding city. This plan would have called for highly programmed spaces and internalized concepts that would sustain the new community, but had little connection to neighbouring communities. A new plan was established in the early 1980's that scrapped nearly all the thinking of the 1970's plan. This plan was done in a Baroque fashion that spoke to the cachet and economic boom of San Francisco at the time. It called for a large central water feature and much ornamentation to produce an area of visual seductiveness. The program was highly pro-development and called for a heavily vehicular-based scheme that allowed the formation of large blocks, ample parking, and many area-specific program elements. While more attractive, the plan still offered no reflection of the Thesis 2000 48 Fraser River Greenway surrounding areas, and presented an almost suburban lifestyle in comparison to the bustling Financial District to the west and Market District to the north. Finally, in the late 1980's, the developer asked for municipal input. The City enlisted the landscape architectural/planning firm, EDAW to assist with a site plan. As well, the City employed another planning firm, Skidmore, Owings, and Merrill (SOM) to mediate and critique the EDAW plan. The final plan looked at the Mission Bay area as a "neighbourhood" that needed to reflect the surrounding areas and the density of the San Francisco environment. The central theme was incremental growth, with the waterfront recognized as a crucial visual and recreational resource. The plan proposed low-rise housing developments that mimicked existing architectural styles, continuous recreational corridors, narrower streets and interspersed commercial and retail developments at central nodes. The result was increased diversity and variety with smaller, less uniform parcels that were connected by a framework of nodes, open spaces, and walkways. This framework was intended to provide the foundation for incremental growth to occur in a short time-frame, but with the same characteristics as the surrounding neighbourhoods. Lessons Learned: • Waterfront planning and development must respect both the history of the site and the surrounding urban context, so as not to isolate the developed site from its environment. The case study illustrates that too often developers seek to create a beautiful and vibrant city within a city, so as to showcase their design expertise and market a "complete package." However, these communities are often short lived and lose desirability as this inclusive structure effectively excludes the needs of the rest of the city. It exists as an entity only to those who live or work in the area, and is socially rejected by surrounding, more "networked" communities. Thesis 2000 49 Fraser River Greenway • Incremental growth is an imperative approach to waterfront planning if an area is to remain socially and economically sustainable over a long period of time. Development of new communities should not occur entirely at one period of time. While the full site may be used, there should remain open spaces that are capable of build-up over time so as to allow densification versus encouraging suburbanization. This structure has the capacity to allow growth that is not discontinuous with the natural growth of a city and will accommodate changing needs and changing cultures. As well, an incremental framework does not displace economies and weaken the revenue base. Instead, it incorporates a variety of uses into a successful mixed economy that attracts workers, business, and densification. • A plan that evolves out of communication and deliberation between many interests will more effectively fulfill the needs of a city, while addressing the desires of those who may inhabit and work in this new community. As well, the community will more likely reflect the growth and condition of surrounding neighbourhoods, encouraging linkage and connectivity rather than isolation. C A S E STUDY #4 - NEWARK-ON-TRENT, ENGLAND ** reference: Scoffham, 1992 as in White, et.al., 1993. The Project: The west banks of the River Trent have long been perceived as a place of dirty, industrial activity, rather than as a place of public access and community. With the advent of fast trains and improved freeway's, Newark-on-Trent has felt immense growth as a commuter town to nearby London. This influence has not only increased residential pressure on the city, but it has created a new interest in the economic possibility of the city's waterfront. The River Trent is easily accessible by moderate sized ships due to a series of lochs built during its industrial boom of the early to mid Thesis 2000 50 Fraser River Greenway 1900's. As well, the river is sited near rail lines and the redeveloped Great North Road leading to London. Industrial use of waterfront lands in Newark-on-Trent declined in the last half of the 20 t h Century, leaving many industrial lots and buildings vacant. However, this land continued to be owned privately, virtually eliminating public contact with the river. The goal of the city was to revitalize this land to accommodate growing residential numbers, increase public accessibility to the waterfront, and regenerate a mixed economy with new water-dependent uses. The problems at issue were the increasing value of the land immediately adjacent to the river and the potential obstruction of views east to an ancient castle and South to the old North Road Bridge. The municipal government did not want to impose restrictive zoning laws that would limit the diversity of the waterfront, but wanted to retain view corridors and the feasibility of commercial and industrial development, despite residential pressures. A solution was found in traditional development patterns and preservation of desired historical features. The land-use that occurred in the region in the early 1900's represented development by planning grids in multiples of six meters. These grids often occurred in blocks of 9 by 9, thus creating minimal frontages of fifty-four meters. This grid created a usable land-planning structure with units large enough to accommodate new industrial interests, but small enough to reduce the potential of sprawling residential complexes. As well, the design of traditional industrial buildings was to be retained to create a facade that could mimic the industrial heritage of the site and perhaps encourage such uses to reestablish themselves. Height restrictions based on this same traditional construction meant that buildings under three stories could exist near the shore. New legislation was put in effect that kept any development from occurring in the high water flats, despite new construction technologies that could have easily made this land developable. Instead, development levies were placed on private owners that specified the construction of pedestrian walkways and promenades in this zone if any development was to occur. This effectively created not only a public waterfront, but retained views for all river users. In this re-establishment of the foreshore high-water flats, the developers were also required to enter into a process of habitat reconstruction. Thesis 2000 51 Fraser River Greenway This reconstruction was to be done in conjunction with the state and federal ministries of environment to bring life back to this eroded shoreline. Lessons Learned: • The integration of heritage and past industrial context can provide a template for redevelopment of urban waterways. Traditional developments are often done in a manner that is responsive to the environment in which they occur. Technological constraints limited the size and height of development that could occur, often minimizing the footprint of the structure both on the land and within the viewshed. As well, development was often done in a rather universal style that would accommodate a variety of users and functions. These construction techniques provided a precedent for a style of redevelopment that is consistent with the architectural form of the city, is responsive to environmental, conditions, and allows for a diversity of waterfront applications. • The forces of residential development and growing land values can be controlled by creative zoning that does not exclude development, but determines the quality and form of development. • Developing a planning grid that is consistent with the existing urban fabric can provide a structure that complements a city and promotes a sense of continuity. Limitations of form and size of development parcels can be as powerful as restrictive zoning practices, as size is often a determinant of use. By promoting a system of small to moderate size development parcels, the ability for one type of development to occur is somewhat mitigated, while still allowing a great diversity of uses that is often restricted under traditional zoning regulations. Thesis 2000 52 Fraser River Greenway • Development of marginal industrial lands can simultaneously allow recreation corridors, ecological restoration, and increased public awareness of a fragile landscape. The Newark foreshore environment is one of the most ecologically sensitive landscapes in its urban environment. Degradation of the foreshore ecology by industry can be repressed by limiting water-access to specific points or nodes. Often these industries do not need complete waterfront access, but can function efficiently with controlled and shared points of penetration. As well, lands not suitable for industry can be eliminated from these uses and restored as functioning habitats. These same lands can then be accessed by recreational users. This increases awareness and can educate the public on the values of this ecosystem. C A S E STUDY #5 - CARNEGIE MELLON R E S E A R C H INSTITUTE, PITTSBURGH ** reference: Olin, 1996 The Project: While this project is neither a true industrial site or located on a waterway, it merits discussion for its understanding of natural and human processes. These same processes occur on the North Fraser and their incorporation into the potential design is part of a responsible, sustainable solution to the thesis project. Landscape architect Laurie Olin approached this redevelopment of a large institution through a study of natural and human processes that had occurred over time on the site. He established that the site had previously been home to a number of natural and man-made ecosystems as it evolved into its present condition. By looking at the two elemental issues of deposition and erosion, Olin was able to build successive layers of history into a McHargian style overlay. Through layering of things that had deposited over time (sediment, waste, mill deposits, industrial garbage, etc.) and the stripping away of things that had eroded over time (stones, hills, structures, trees, etc.), Olin was able to begin mapping out a history of significant spots and patterns on the site Thesis 2000 53 Fraser River Greenway landscape. This hypothetical landscape then began informing decisions concerning scale of structures, location of roads, networks, and other design elements. While the goal was never to create a "natural" landscape, its intent was to create an environment that was ordered and met all requirements of the design criteria in a way that seemed to share the seemingly disordered natural world. The idea being that an ecosystem may seem chaotic and unstructured, but when exposed and studied over time, it truly represents a cohesive and orderly system that only operates when all parts are represented at appropriate proportions. This is the goal of most design, and perhaps the most difficult to achieve. Laurie Olin was attempting to capture the history of the site and create a "place" that characterized and embraced the site, while incorporating all elements in a way that opposed the traditional research or industrial parks. Lessons Learned: • The basic cataloging of a site's history, context, and structure in relation to the human and natural processes that affect the site do not provide a level of awareness and sensitivity acceptable for successful design. The designer must understand the relevance of site history and the processes of time and apply it in a way that is creative and representative of the new landscape. To merely acknowledge a site's history through interpretation and the retention of historical elements is superficial. To capture the spirit of the place (its genus loci), the design must encompass many of the processes that have occurred on the site and apply them to current and relevant interpretation. This new interpretation will be richer, more meaningful, and present a more creative solution to a design problem than traditional site inventory approaches. No longer is the designer cataloging existing experience, but he is transplanting layers of history into a modern form of experience. Thesis 2000 54 Fraser River Greenway • The emotion and sense of place we experience when discovering a landscape is not dependent solely on natural elements. Manmade intervention can reflect just as strongly on the character and sense of the site. Too often when seeking to expose the structure of a site, ecology becomes the founding principle and indicator of the processes that occur in the place. However the influence of man over time does much to shape the landscape, and this influence consequently shapes the perception people have of the site. To embrace this human history and apply it with the natural history is a large step in creating a modern sustainable landscape where both facets can coexist. DESIGN DISCUSSION AND LITERATURE REVIEW The pressures of economy and habitation are exacting a huge toll on our urban environments and placing immense pressures on both the environmental condition and economic stability of existing culture (Healey, 1997). Urban design can be a powerful tool to direct this progression into the 2 1 s t Century (Van Der Ryn, 1996). This quest is to define a balance within the urban environment. Balance in this case, is: "...attainment of a level of control within a municipal context that recognizes the need for stasis in given sectors of urban life, while still accommodating, validating, and recognizing burgeoning new cultures of urbanity. When this balance is achieved, cities choose to retain heritage, existing economic structure, and a social footing that is as much rooted in current infrastructure as it is in its tendency to embrace all that is new and holds assumed promise." (Reid, et al. 1998). While the cliche that change is inevitable is not necessarily negative, and in many cases is a positive element in urban life, there is a need for the retention of infrastructure as the scaffolding that supports the city during experimentation with new and often unproven ways of living. When speaking of change (and the desire to resist change) as a basic premise for continued urban stability, we are lead directly into the writings of many urban theorists. Jane Jacobs, in her work, The Life and Death of Great American Cities, Thesis 2000 55 Fraser River Greenway encourages active change in the urban environment. However, this change is to follow the structures of the past that have proven successful and have at times been forgotten in the design of our present. Simple concepts such as the "front yard" and "eyes on the street" are often neglected in our modern designs of suburban neighbourhoods with their focus on the backyard and the sprawling recreational park. These thoughts carry over in the writings of Bachelard and his notion of the attic. The attic is a place of familiarity and of retreat, where things are known and understood and embraced with the warmth of an old friend or companion. Often it is the case that we choose to advance so rapidly that we discard those things which have developed a patina of age and a sense of meaning. While this meaning may not be evident on the surface, it is often immediately apparent upon loss. The landscape is much like the attic, in that the human user becomes secure within an environment of some stability. While some change is often welcome, a replicating or continued infrastructure supports the social conditioning that is developed throughout human enculturation within a society (Van Der Ryn, 1996). The landscape of our youth and of our present is often the external manifestation of the attic, and with the loss of this landscape, comes the loss of one's centre. It is this centre that cannot be replaced by modern technology, industry, and thinking. Modernity can encourage new thought and progressive design, and is especially powerful when it incorporates the strengths of the past and the cultural context of the site into plans for contemporary design. When discussing the relevance of change, much current thinking attempts to assess the emotional and cultural impact of this change upon a society (Kaplan and Kaplan; Forman and Godron, 1986; VanDer Ryn, 1996; Reid, 1990). However, few readings link us to the relevance of changes upon the landscape. A current trend in technological advancement is the placelessness of such industry (Dorcey, 1991). This is a change in the landscape that may greatly affect the infrastructure of the existing urban environment. High tech industry and the modern office environment is often not resource or site dependent and can choose to occur in areas that have not previously been exploited, or have not seen the influence of an industrial context. However, the culturally imbued value of the urban environment and the nearness to an effective trading and economic hub remains essential to successful modernization and advance, Thesis 2000 56 Fraser River Greenway despite growths in e-mail, facsimile, tele-marketing, etc. (Hutton and Davis, 1991). This potential displacement of industry and its concurrent social changes must be balanced with the emotional and cultural needs of the existing situation. This is the kind of assessment appealed for by Kaplan and Kaplan when contemplating modern urban design. To complement this discussion of cultural and emotional values in the urban environment, the recognition of the natural environment and its balance with the industrial environment must also be considered. Humans place high aesthetic value on those few pieces of land within an urban environment where environment and ecology abut urbanity. Many studies show that in the past, these areas have been dominated by resource dependent industries that require this interface for successful integration with the urban environment. Industry and environment are intrinsically interdependent in this urban situation (Hutton and Davis, 1991). With the reduction of urban-based industry in the urban core, many cities are giving away a strong economic and cultural past in exchange for the promise of "newer" and "cleaner" technologies (Dorcey, 1991; CONW, 1988). This sacrifice of taxable earnings, land rents, and zoning considerations is often overcome by high incentives by land developers who recognize the retail potential of these highly co modified edge environments (FREMP, 1994). Christopher Alexander speaks of these edge conditions as being desirable for habitation due to their appeal to our need for proximity to natural environments. The appreciation of nature and its positive psychological benefits are well documented in landscape design and environmental psychology literature - Kaplan and Kaplan, Steiner, and Thayer all recall a time when the human condition existed without the urban landscape, and this landscape of nature is still preferred by our psyche. What is often forgotten in these arguments is the necessity for these nature/urban interfaces to support the resource-dependent industries that are often key economic inputs within the city (Hough, et al. , 1997). Michael Hough's studies on the Toronto Portlands illustrates that the exposure of these land/water environments to development that has the ability to occur in any place within the urban infrastructure greatly reduces the economic carrying capacity of a city. The result of this incongruency in desired land use and urban infrastructure needs to be overridden by aggressive zoning policies, tax Thesis 2000 57 Fraser River Greenway incentives for industry, and the education of urban dwellers as to the importance of a diverse and mixed economy. This will enable a city to retain a viable economic, social, and environmental structure that will ensure the city's carrying capacity (Hough, et al., 1997). The New Westminster Planning Department illustrates that the migration of resource dependent industries to a suburban situation displaces a large body of revenue in taxation, employment, rent, etc. (1988). As well, it is often difficult for such industry to find a home in suburban areas due to increased environmental legislation and NIMBY (Not In My Back-Yard) attitudes (CONW, 1988). It is necessary to find balance by recognizing the need for such industrial provisions, while also recognizing the desire for nearness to nature so poignant in modern urban society. Perhaps it is best explained by Thayer (1995) when he says that "...we must be able to restructure technology to serve ecological and human values, rather than overwhelm them." Thayer is saying that while technology is necessary, it must exist in a balance between people and their environment. The fulfillment of a balanced urban environment (ecology, industry, and culture) can be attained, as long as we minimize its footprint while retaining its context and resource-based sensibility (Healey, 1997). This must be done concurrently with the integration of human desires for increased interaction with the natural environment. Approaches that recognize this fragile balancing act are becoming increasingly widespread. Clare Cooper Marcus and Carolyn A. Francis have gone so far as to provide designers with a useful schematic that attempts to focus attention on a wide range of design parameters that should make the human use of space more successful. By incorporating such elements as visual complexity, microclimate, boundaries, programs, circulation, seating, public art, and other urban elements, one can begin to use this schematic to assess priority of placement, location, and usage so as to better understand the intensive demands placed on the city landscape and begin to establish a series of land use priorities. When this balance is achieved, not only will we attain a successful economic infrastructure, but we will recognize the new directions of urban life and be better equipped to challenge the issues of the urban ecological condition. Thesis 2000 58 Fraser River Greenway A BRIEF STUDY OF SUSTAINABILITY Sustainability is perhaps the first ecological "buzz word" of this century. While the term has existed in its current context since the 1960's, its use and promotion on a broad world-scale likely did not occur until 1987 (Forman, 1995; Mooney, 1999). 1987 marked the year of the World Trade Commission on Environment and Development. For the first time, leaders of many of the world's nations came together to discuss the effects of development on environment and the poverty of underdevelopment (Dorcey, 1991). The key component to be established from this commission was a definition of sustainability that reached policy makers, designer, ecologists, and planners around the world. Sustainable development was defined as "...development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs" and concludes with "...what is needed now is a new era of economic growth - growth that is forceful and at the same time socially and environmentally sustainable." (WCED, 1987). While this definition has become the hallmark by which the sustainability "boom" has anchored itself upon, there are several competing and alternative approaches to the concept (Dorcey, 1991). The W C E D definition is often critiqued as being too focused on economic growth as the primary determinant of future growth. This economic determinism can be said to be seeking the maximum outputs available from the environment in order to support human life, without valuing the intrinsic value of all life and the non-human elements of an ecosystem (Naess, 1992). Mooney (1999) suggests that such thinking places sustainability within the expansionist view. In this view, sustainable development is "...the expansion or realization of potentialities; the gradual bringing to a fuller, greater or better state." (Young as in Mooney, 1999). This can be part of an ecological view of sustainable development, but its meaning can easily be placed upon the industrial nature of the city when industry supports the elemental sustenance of the city. A second view is beginning to be favoured by environmental ecologists, landscape architects, and other environmentally based professions. This view is known as the ecological view, which focuses on "...sustaining human activity, within resource. Thesis 2000 59 Fraser River Greenway constraints and without continuously expanding the gross national product" (Mooney, 1999). This view speaks well of Naess' discussion of the Greek philosopher Diogenes, who promotes the theology that man needs little to live a rich life (1992). Life has the capacity to be filled in great joy and respect for the world itself, without a need for greedy pretension or economies of excess. It is this view of sustainability that should be integrated into the design thesis, as it represents an environment that allows industrial activity to occur and to prosper, but at a level that is subservient to the fulfillment of natural processes that must occur in the estuarine environment. To clarify the strategy that seems most valid to the project, one more definition should be presented. Forman wisely proposes that "Sustainable development is the intentional planning and design of human ecosystems through the application of ecological understanding, to make conscious, informed decisions concerning conflicts between human and ecosystems needs." (1995). This is a compelling argument for sustainable design, as it recognizes the reality of conflict, but simultaneously recognizes the ability for human intervention and landscape design to be the catalyst that allows the dissolution of these barriers. From this principle, it is possible to understand the premise of sustainability as a theory that promotes the integration of economy, ecology, and social structure into a holistic ethic (Forman, 1995; Healey, 1997). Healey expounds upon this premise: • By economically viable we mean that the human economy is capable of satisfying the reasonable material desires of the vast majority of its citizens. • By socially acceptable we meant that the vast majority of the population is willing to live in accordance with the rules of governance. • By environmentally sustainable we mean that changes to the ecosystem do not degrade its biological productivity, biodiversity, or regenerative capacity. Healey provides method to these notions when he states that all levels of government must adopt sustainability as a primary mandate. No level of government has any right to claim ignorance or refuse sustainability as an imperative part of its responsibility (Healey, 1997). Mooney supports the need for government to be responsible for the coordination and facilitation of these principles. However, he insists that partnerships Thesis 2000 60 Fraser River Greenway must occur at multiple levels of the public and private sector is success is to be achieved (1999). This notion of shared responsibility, with policy being the foundation of implementation, is a notion that will be taken into the design process. While sustainability is important on a world-wide scale, its implementation is perhaps most manageable and most successful at a local scale (Forman, 1995). Design that occurs at this scale is more likely to succeed, as the interests and concerns of the community and those directly involved in the process can be heard. As well, Noss (1983) and Cutler (1991) both recognize that while ecosystems and biodiversity exist irrespective of scale, the recognition of life processes at the local scale are important for the preservation of niche habitats. The recognition, retention, and rehabilitation of rare and native species are crucial to ecological sustainability and this level of ecological support is often only available at the site scale (Ahern, 1990). While large-scale sustainable endeavours may recognize critical habitat areas, they fail to recognize micro-diversity that is easily displaced by a mega-view. An awareness of these species rich areas can then be preserved and linked to other protected lands in an open space strategy that creates interconnected environmental corridors (Ahern, 1990; Cutler, 1991). These corridors then, can grow from the local scale to the regional scale, and ideally to the national scale. This level of assessment prior to development will enhance the sustainable success of the project, as enhancement of ecological function is determined prior to development (Mooney, 1999). Development will then occur in an iterative scheme that embraces this pre-structural research. This pre-development assessment is also applicable to the social element of sustainability. While this element is often forgotten in the powerful forces of economy and ecology, it is the users of the urban environment that determine an areas success. If there is not a sense of appreciation for the site, then there is little opportunity for an attitude of stewardship to evolve. This grassroots level of concern for the ecological health of the site and the industrial productivity of the community is vital to resist status quo development. "People need to be shown and are generally reluctant to accept sweeping change." (Mooney, 1999). If people are incorporated into the pre-development assessment and support the subsequent development, the social acceptance of the environment will be sustained. Thesis 2000 61 Fraser River Greenway INDUSTRIAL ECONOMICS Industry and technology are major cultural determinants, no less important in shaping human lives than philosophy, religion, social organization, or political systems. In the broadest sense, these forces are also aspects of technology. The French sociologist Jacques Ellul has defined la technique as "...the totality of all rational methods in every field of human activity...", so that, for example, education, law, sports, propaganda, and the social sciences are all technologies in that sense. At the other end of the scale, common parlance limits the term's meaning to specific industrial arts. All industry is driven by the development of technology, and it is this technology that is supported by economy (Van Der Ryn, 1996). More recently, Ellul has concluded even more sweepingly that technology has its own dynamic that not only reaches across political ideologies but also represents a monstrous force that must be contained with the utmost vigilance if it is not to enslave people. This negative view finds expression in various ways, from calls for a complete halt in further technological development to suggestions of scaled back, or milder, forms of controlling or taming technology. Economics and industry, as such, cannot be separated in the context of the way we shape the modern urban environment. In relation to industry, the classical objective of economic activity is to ".. .achieve the highest possible level of present consumption of goods and services that is compatible with the supply of human and material resources (or factors) available to produce them." (Samuelson, Paul, and Nordhaus, 1989). The scarcity of human and material resources, as evidenced by the existence of prices, imposes the necessity of allocating resources among alternative present and future uses (Rima, 1978). Choice, therefore, is the essence of economic decision-making. If we apply this classical economic foundation to both the current context and the design professions, we see that it incorporates no consideration of environmental concerns such as carrying capacity and Best Management Practices. Nor is there any propensity to consider basic human satisfaction within the urban environment and the "value" that quality of life may have over simple capital gain. This is the step that must be taken by the designer in Thesis 2000 62 Fraser River Greenway order to facilitate the economic needs of a city and its industrial manifestation. This way the design will successfully integrate humanity and ecology with these often over-riding technological/industrial/economic demands. But before we understand how our environment exists today, we must understand how the landscape of technology was developed. The Landscape of Technology: The term Industrial Revolution describes the historical transformation of traditional into modern societies by industrialization of the economy (Wronski, et al., 1989). The main defining feature of the revolution was a dramatic increase in per capita production that was made possible by the mechanization of manufacturing and other processes that were carried out in factories (Deane, 1980). Its main social impact according to Deane was its transformation of an agrarian society into an urban industrial society. The historical term Industrial Revolution can be applied to specific countries and periods of the past, however, the process of industrialization continues, particularly in developing countries (Glen, 1984). Since industrialization makes possible long-term increases in production and income, economists continue to study the Industrial Revolution for patterns and typologies that were founded in 18 t h Century Britain. Many of these methodologies continue to apply today in what is often called the Second Industrial Revolution (Deane, 1980). The revolution in Great Britain has immediate relevance when assessing the current industrial condition in North America. The cities of this continent are presently undergoing a reform in their urban infrastructure that is largely akin to the vast cultural changes that occurred in Britain during the 18 t h Century. While the form of the technology is vastly different, the means, methodologies, and economics are largely congruent. While historians disagree on the exact causes of Britain's Industrial Revolution (which may be viewed as stemming from a variety of related and coincidental factors), there are many advantages that existed in the British social structure that can be easily translated Into thaf of modern North America (Hindle, Brooke, and Lubar, 1986). Thesis 2000 63 Fraser River Greenway Hindle, Brooke, and Lubar show that Britain had certain natural advantages, not unlike those of Vancouver, that help explain why the Industrial Revolution began there. It was richly endowed with coal and iron ore, easily navigable waterways, and easily negotiated coasts. It was favorably placed at the crossroads of international trade, and internal trade was stimulated by the absence of domestic tariffs in what was, after the union of England and Scotland in 1707, the largest free-trade area in Europe (Hindle, Brooke, and Lubar, 1986). Political liberty was guaranteed, and a relatively open social structure made upward social mobility common, thus giving an incentive to the accumulation of wealth (Deane, 1980). The principles of the Protestant Nonconformists, who were to form the backbone of the new middle class, encouraged a combination of industry and thrift (Glen, 1984). New knowledge, especially in science, was freely disseminated, breeding an inventiveness and a willingness to accept change. In short, 18th-century British society provided the framework within where five fundamental types of change could propagate: change in agriculture, population, technology, commerce, and transportation (Deane, 1980; Glen, 1984). When applied to the modern context, we still find that these five fundamental elements of change are occurring in every post-industrial city in North America. While we are no longer an agrarian-based society, we continue to seek new and more effective forms of agricultural production, using advanced technology as a means for intensive efficiency and limited land occupancy. Hutton and Davis (1991) make this clear by illustrating that the labour force (in the Lower Mainland) dedicated to agriculture grew 32 percent between 1982 and 1986, but the landbase dedicated to these endeavours dropped more than 26 percent over the same period. This is occurring as the population continues to grow. This growth remains concentrated on urban centres, giving increased concern to the issues of pollution, over-crowding, and densification. It is expected that the Vancouver region will accommodate an average of 113 additional people per day for the next thirty years, and that the population will exceed three million people by the year 2021 (GVRD as in Mooney). In Volume 1 of his famous work, Das Kapital, Karl Marx accentuates his central objective "...to lay bare the economic 'law of motion' of modern society..." The prime mover of social change, he maintained, "...was to be found in changes in the mode of Thesis 2000 64 Fraser River Greenway production..." and as such, technology is again shifting. In Britain, the shift was from agrarian to urban, whereas in current times, the paradigmatic shift is from heavy industry and production-related ventures to the potential sterility of high-tech industry (FREMP, 1994). This change is affecting as great a change on modern culture as the Industrial Revolution did in the first formation of great urban industrial centers. In the case of high-technology, Hutton and Davis (1991) explain that we are again seeing great displacement of the labour-force and a focus on highly trained and skilled individuals. They support this on a national basis by stating the service sector has accounted for 75 percent of the growth in employment, with Vancouver representing 63 percent of the province's employment in producer services. Much of this change in urban infrastructure is fueled directly by economy, and conversely, the economy is fueled by this infrastructure. This playing of economy onto industry and vice-versa is placing new demands on the urban landscape and revaluing landscapes previously devoted to heavy industry. As stated earlier, the modern high tech industry is no longer landscape dependent, and as such, the urban/nature interface zones are gaining appeal as places of habitation versus places of resource-based industry (FREMP, 1994). This reformulation of land value based on dollar per square footage (as developed by the housing industry) is vastly increasing the land value as previously determined by industrial usage (Real Property Value Report, 1999). Finally, whereas transportation in the Industrial Revolution indicated a new-found mobility for mass produced goods, transportation in the current context relates to the general mobility of the entire population. With vastly increased urban infrastructure, we have created a place where the long-distance commuter is a reality and an individual is no longer required to live in close proximity to their work environment (Wronski, et al., 1989). This furthers the notion of displacement, as the traditional sense of community is disintegrated in the face of "freedom" and "choice" that the automobile has come to represent in North American culture despite growth in forward thinking planning policy. "It is because our social and physical infrastructure has been built around the assumption that the individual private vehicle will continue to be the primary mode of transportation." (Healey, 1997). Thesis 2000 65 Fraser River Greenway Again, this is a direct result of industrial economics. As population continues to encroach upon urban centre's as a result of increased employment opportunities, the same population must begin to move outward in search of more affordable housing prices and greater plots of land. Alternatively, people may grow tired of the costsof commuting and living in low amenity suburbs. They therefore settle for less space, less or no land, in order to be closer to the urban core. The real estate market in Vancouver (Concord Pacific, Yaletown redevelopment, and Coal Harbour) illustrates that this is a trend in the Vancouver environment. However, if suburbanization dominates, this represents a fundamental shift in the way that we choose to live within our landscape. To combat this, we must begin to seek solutions that will allow continued economic prosperity, but will stagnate displacement and recognize the necessity of more traditional economic and industrial means to retain a stable and supportive infrastructure. This consensus has "...emerged among politicians, labour, and adjacent communities that industrially zoned lands are essential to attract secure, well-paying jobs to the city waterfront." (Hough, et al., 1997). The Puritan ethic and a belief in free enterprise continues to foster technological innovation and economic growth, but it must now recognize the need to control sprawl and support the urban ecological environment. "The Industrial Revolution rendered many skills obsolete and made workers dependent upon fluctuating market forces. People often felt that they had less control over their destiny as machines, although created by humans, seemed to become their masters." Deane, 1980 Through industry and its resultant economic values, cities can be places of opportunity and personal development in ways that had never been possible in a closed, static rural society. Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels argued that only through industrialization could workers develop their social and political consciousness. In the 18 t h Century, finding strength through common experience, workers developed labor unions and political organizations to protect their interests and achieve a greater share of the profits of industry. In the 2 1 s t Century we can still follow Marx and Engels, but now we must find strength through common values and compassion for our own social Thesis 2000 66 Fraser River Greenway welfare and the welfare of our environment as we forge ahead technologically. For all its ill effects the Industrial Revolution solved the problem of the poverty trap described by Thomas Malthus in An Essay on the Principle of Population (1798) - - the cycle of low income, low consumption, low demand, and low production. Now we must combat the problem of environmental destruction and industrial displacement, while establishing a positive social environment where human habitation can occur within the industrial and post-industrial construct. RECREATION AND G R E E N W A Y S When we walk, we naturally go to the fields and woods: what would become of us, if we walked only in a garden or a mall? Henry David Thoreau Intensive preliminary studies done by the Royal Commission for the Future of the Toronto Waterfronts have resulted in substantial evidence supporting the development of a recreational infrastructure along urban waterways (Reid, et al., 1990). Such developments not only have the capacity to provide desired recreational opportunities, but link communities together (Reid, et al., 1990). As well, evidence was conclusive that there is "...an increasing interest in activities, facilities, and parks that are less programmed and more available for unscheduled, spontaneous participation." (Reid, et al., 1990). The Commission justifies the need for increased recreation as 65 percent of Canadians are active at least once a week, with percentages possibly higher in the more seasonal climate of the Pacific Coast (Reid, et al., 1990). In support of linear trail systems, a full 89.3 percent of Ontario residents agreed that Toronto should continue to develop a network of linked parks and trail systems. More than 70 percent of these individuals were participants in non-consumptive wildlife and outdoor activities near their homes that required little space for their activities to occur. (Reid, et al. , 1990). These numbers illustrate that a greenway system is likely the most viable recreational system to develop within the tight ecological and industrial constraints of the North Fraser. Greenways are often the "green threads within the urban fabric" which provide linkages between green spaces. A Green space is an open space such as a park or wildlife refuge. A Greenbelt is the network of green spaces and greenways that can Thesis 2000 67 Fraser River Greenway encircle as well as infiltrate an urban area (COV, 1995). To illustrate the diversity of thinking and literature that surrounds the growing realm of greenway design, it is helpful to explore a variety of definitions. • Greenway - a natural way based on protected linear corridors which will improve environmental quality and provide for outdoor recreation. These corridors can have scenic, historic, or ecologically significant features. ' (Greenways for America, Charles E. Little) • Greenway - a linear open space established along either a natural corridor, such as a riverfront, stream valley, or ridgeline, or overland along a railroad right-of-way converted to recreational use, a canal, a scenic road, or other route. It is any natural or landscaped course for pedestrian or bicycle passage. An open-space connector linking parks, nature reserves, cultural features, or historic sites with each other and with populated areas. Locally, certain strip or linear parks designated as a parkway or greenbelt. (Greenways for America, Charles E. Little) • Greenway - Green implies natural amenities such as forests, riverbanks, wildlife, etc. Way implies a route or path. (Greenways - A Guide to Planning, Design, and Development, C. Fink and R. Seams) • Greenway - This term was popularized during the middle of this century by William H. Whyte as a combination of the words "greenbelt" and "parkway" to describe vegetated corridors used primarily for outdoor recreational pursuits. (Rural By Design, Randall Arendt) Greenways can range in form from narrow urban trail corridors to winding river corridors to very wide, wilderness-like landscape linkages. They can straddle waterways, traverse ridgelines, or cut across upland areas independent of natural geomorphic features. They occur in different types of landscapes, from cities and suburbs to farmland and commercial forests. (Ecology of Greenways, Daniel S. Smith) Greenways can be categorized under the following project types: 1. Urban Riverside Greenways, usually created as part of a redevelopment program along neglected, often run-down city waterfronts. 2. Recreational Greenways, featuring paths and trails of various kinds, often of relatively long distances, based on natural corridors as well as canals, abandoned rail beds, and other public rights-of-ways. Thesis 2000 68 Fraser River Greenway 3. Ecologically significant natural corridors, usually along rivers and streams and ridgelines, to provide for wildlife migration and biodiversity, nature study, and hiking. 4. Scenic and Historic Routes, usually along a road or highway, the most representative of them making an effort to provide pedestrian access along the route or at least places to reprieve from the car. 5. Comprehensive Greenway Systems or Networks, usually based on natural landforms such as valleys and ridges but sometimes simply an opportunistic assemblage of greenways and open spaces of various kinds to create an alternative municipal or regional green infrastructure. (Greenways for America, Charles A. Little) Within the North American Economy, open land is often considered as an unused and wasted resource that will reach its full potential only if it is developed and put to 'productive uses'. This attitude is often accompanied by strong opposition to open space preservation. But, as communities increasingly deveiop, as traffic grows heavier, and as open lands steadily dwindle away, the intrinsic values of such natural areas become more apparent to larger numbers of people (Kaplan and Kaplan). As Will Rogers declared, "Land, they ain't making it anymore." The loss of open space has become increasingly apparent on the national level and is particularly striking in many urban areas. As a result, interest in all types of land conservation has risen to an unprecedented level (Wronski, et al. , 1989). At the same time, the cost of land in many places, especially metropolitan areas, has continued to rise, while federal funding for land conservation has plummeted (FREMP, 1994). Land protection has thus become increasingly difficult in many parts of the country. "Greenways are a partial solution to this problem because they often require less land than traditional, nonlinear parks, especially when recreation is the primary focus." (Smith, Daniel, 1994). Greenways as Transportation The Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991 (U.S.A.): conceives of transportation planning as a system of complementary modes; regional railroads, high-speed magnetic-levitation trains, trolleys, busses and bike paths; Thesis 2000 69 Fraser River Greenway requires states to support a broad range of transportation enhancement activities such as building scenic highways and trails, preserving historic roads and canals, acquiring scenic easements and recycling rail corridors; and requires that transportation policy be coordinated with regional and urban planning... The multi-modal view illustrates that transportation and recreation are not mutually exclusive activities. One consequence of the unpredicted decrease in leisure time is that more people seek to mix their activities. An hour spent biking to work or running errands on foot is an hour of exercise. Commuting, or other utilitarian trips, can become recreation instead of wasted drive time (FREMP, 1996; Reid, 1990). The motives of people's trips are less important than encouraging options by providing safe and attractive facilities such as greenways (Blueways, 1999). With this conceptualization in mind, it is apparent that any trail becomes part of a non-motorized transportation system. One frequently asked question is whether the greenway trails serve primarily a transportation or recreation purpose. It is difficult to make a meaningful distinction between recreation and transportation functions since, for example, bicycle commuting is a transportation activity which provides a recreational benefit. It is clear, however, that the trails provide a real "alternative" to motorized use. Greenways will play a significant role in providing bicycling and walking alternatives and help control traffic congestion on city streets (COV, 1995). The American Greenways Program believes that greenways can provide alternative transportation routes that connect people, communities, and the countryside. Area transportation networks are expanded by the introduction of greenways. Many paved greenway trails serve as alternate transportation routes for commuters, students, and tourists. ("Greenways for the S.E. Tennessee River Valley", NPS.) With transportation infrastructure representing the largest determinant in the shaping of urban form, an important aspect of greenway design is defining the way people and vehicles will move around and through the proposed greenway (COV, 1999). To address this, Flink and Seams propose six guiding questions: Thesis 2000 70 Fraser River Greenway 1. Whom do these transportation corridors serve? 2. How might the greenway enhance the existing transportation system? 3. What kind of transportation system can and should the greenway support? 4. What existing bike paths, sidewalks, or trail systems in the community can be incorporated into the proposed greenway system? 5. What are the safety factors (sight distance, speed limits, traffic volume) involved at areas of intersection between the greenway and existing transportation corridors? 6. Can the greenway system be incorporated in any future highway construction projects? (Greenways - A Guide to Planning, Design, and Development, C Flink and R. Searns) By addressing these questions and transplanting the answers into physical form, a sustainable style of transportation corridor will evolve that may reshape traditional vehicle-based urban design. Greenway Implementation The time has come to stop thinking of our cities as one place and nature as someplace else. (The Trust for Public Land) The environment begins at the edge or our shoes as we explore along a streambank, at the tips of our fingers as the water curls around them, and in the bordering woodlands in which we, hugging our knees, sit as still as stone, watching a deer glide by. Greenways, therefore, should be seen as a beginning in a journey toward an environmental consciousness starting at the edge of our shoes. (Greenways for America, Charles A. Little) Pedestrians and cyclists are much cheaper to accommodate than motor vehicles and do no environmental harm -- a strong reason to give them not merely equal, but preferential treatment (COV, 1997). The provision of greenways and greenbelts in communities function in two ways to reduce air pollution. 1. Trees and other vegetation in green spaces possess a large capacity for removing Carbon Dioxide, particulates, and other pollutants from the air. 2. Greenways help preserve the biological diversity of plant and animal species by maintaining the connections between natural communities (Liddle, 1997). While these two benefits of urban ecology are clear, there are many other opportunities to expand this ecological environment. Thesis 2000 71 Fraser River Greenway Greenways make great outdoor classrooms, particularly in urban areas. Many communities have nature centers and other interpretive programs located along their natural corridors. Greenways are very effective in introducing and connecting urban residents to the natural world by offering first-hand opportunities to observe wildlife and plant species in their native element and to interpret the human impact on nature. Through various volunteer activities such as tree planting and cleanups, greenways can instill a sense of environmental stewardship. (Greenways - A Guide to Planning, Design, and Development, Charles A. Flink and Robert M. Stearns) When people are asked where they would prefer to live, work, shop, and recreate, they invariably select communities or neighborhoods that have an abundance of trees, open spaces, and uncluttered pedestrian ways (COV, 1995). These preferences translate into clear economic terms; if a community is to succeed in attracting new residents and businesses, the community must be concerned about its appearance, physical character, livability, and 'feel' (Loriing and Schwarz, 1994). Protected open space increases the value of the surrounding land while creating little new demand for costly governmental services (COV, 1997). Greenways offer economic benefits both in the form of higher property values for private properties located near the greenways and in opportunities for economic activities supporting their use (Real Property Values Report, 1998). Examples include equipment sales or rentals, dining and overnight accommodations, and commercial enterprises selling outdoor recreation items. The contribution of greenways to the environmental quality of an area, which in turn may attract desirable economic development or revitalization, should not be overlooked. Some techniques for the inclusion of trails and greenways in comprehensive plans are: 1. Combining recreation and transportation plans, and combining different modes of travel. 2. Linking adjacent subdivisions with non-motorized connections, bikeways, walkways, and short-cuts that encourage walking and bicycling. 3. Providing trail linkages to workplaces and trails near employment centers as well as to residential areas. Thesis 2000 72 Fraser River Greenway 4. Using major planning initiatives as opportunities for trail system development. 5. Looking at all kinds of corridors—transportation, utility, streams and drainage—as opportunities to include greenways and recreation. 6. Working with all varieties of agencies, governments, and institutions to include greenways in planning efforts. 7. Looking beyond the movement of people to attract support from environmental, education, and open space preservation interests. 8. Promoting trails- and greenways as a resource for the future: an investment in more livable communities. ("Green Threads in the Urban Fabric", Stuart H. Macdonald) In the attainment of a conceptual framework and master plan, it is necessary to briefly tackle one of the biggest issues in actual implementation - land use and acquisition. Access to land is undeniably the key issue in any open space planning initiative, as it is access to the land that allows the opportunity for design to occur. Regretfully, land use and acquisition is the most difficult part of the process, as it involves large financial commitment on behalf of government, NGO's, private parties, local greenway groups/grassroots organizations, and large business (Northeastern Illinois Planning Commission, 1992). When the financial issues are compounded with existing land tenure issues and liability concerns of property owners, the process of greenways is no longer so clear. It is a misunderstanding of ownership issues, liability, and the tools that are in place to remediate these concerns that may lead to the failure of a greenways and trails program. This phase in the greenways design process must begin to address the question of land ownership at the micro-scale, dealing with people on an individual to individual basis to meet and address case specific needs. This is perhaps the most difficult aspect of greenway design and as a result occupies much time, labor expenditure, and economic outlay in order to merely begin the construction of such a trail system (Northeastern Illinois Planning Commission, 1992). It is essential to outline and evaluate some of the tools and mechanisms available to greenway planners, as well as Thesis 2000 73 Fraser River Greenway to offer some insight to cases of successful implementation (cases presented in Appendix 1). A study of greenway literature and legal policy illustrates that there are three essential tools to gain access to private lands for recreational access: Purchase and Donation, Temporary Land Agreements, and Easements. The discussion of these three tools has been condensed into imperative points relevant to the design and planning initiatives of the thesis. ** For fluidity of reading, the discussion of greenway land acquisition tools will not be repetitively cited. Rather, all sections have been condensed and interpreted from Loriing and Schwarz, 1994; Quayle, Paterson, etal., 1992; BCGov., 1995; BCGov., 1996; and Reid, 1990. 1. Purchase and Donation: Fee Simple Acquisition: This is perhaps the most common and straight forward method of acquiring land for a greenway or trail system. However, it can also be the most costly, as it represents the simple purchase of land in its entirety. Those interested in implementing a trail system gain full rights and title to any parcel of land that is purchased fee simple. In situations where the land is deemed a "necessary" piece of the greenway system and is required in its entirety, yet insufficient funds are available at the outset, the buyer may enter into an installment contract where the existing owner continues all present usage and rights of the land until payment is made in full. Here, clauses can be set where the greenway group can utilize portions of the land during the payment term, so that needs of both seller and purchaser can be satisfied in the interim. Donations/Gifts: Giving land to a group interested in greenway design and preservation may at first seem unrealistic and completely unfeasible to the existing landowner. However, if the land is largely unused or non-profitable, yet desired as a travel route by those representing the needs of the greenway, an owner may opt to gift this land under the auspice of preservation. With this donation, the donor becomes eligible for charitable tax credits that may far outweigh the value of the land in the sense of open market sale. Often the taxes on land alone grow at such' a rate, that donation of high tax bracket lands can be highly rewarding in a financial sense, while promoting the preservation and public use of lands. An alternative form of gift giving is the turning Thesis 2000 74 Fraser River Greenway over of land to a registry. This is a formal list of significant areas on a particular parcel of land that makes it desirable for preservation and potential greenway use. Registries are handed over on a voluntary basis and the owner is subsequently rewarded with formal recognition of the significance of their property. Bargain Sale: This essentially represents a blending of fee simple and donation as forms of land acquisition. A bargain sale can be procured when a landowner requires substantial assets in a short period of time. The greenway group may have enough funds to purchase land below market cost. The landowner receives some monetary compensation, and is able to write off the remaining unclaimed value of the land as a taxable deduction, creating a dual value situation. Right of First Refusal: Simply stated, right of first refusal allows a group desiring land for greenways to enter into a contract with a landowner who may not yet be ready to sell. However, this land represents a necessary acquisition for the greenway's success, and through this contract, the land must first be offered to the greenway development group before entering sale on the open market. Ultimately, this favors both the landowner and purchaser, as the owner likely has a guaranteed sale (and supports the community good) and the purchaser acts to complete a linkage in the trail system. 2. Temporary Land Agreements Often it is necessary for a greenway group to establish temporary agreements with landowners in order to secure critical nodes and passageways. Temporary lease(s) and agreements afford the landowner some time to contemplate the value of the greenway and come to a decision as to what type of more permanent agreement is most favourable. As well, it allows the further implementation of the greenway system and may demonstrate its value and necessity to the wary landowner. Again, there are several styles of temporary land agreement, however only a few cater neatly to the demands of a trail or greenway system. Formal Land Lease: Just as fee simple is the most clear-cut way to purchase land outright, a formal land lease is a direct lease of the land from the owner. The lessee is Thesis 2000 75 Fraser River Greenway subsequently allowed to implement land upgrades to improve land value and ensure the safety of users. In return, the landowner gains permanent upgrades to the land and may procure rent payments over the term of the lease. This presents the owner with an opportunity to earn an additional income, as well as to reduce the level of maintenance and its associated costs over the term of the lease. Management Agreement: This is similar to a formal land lease, with the exception of monetary gain. Such an agreement is made between the owner and the greenway group so that a landowner can be freed of the maintenance and upkeep of lands that may be sitting under-utilized. As well, basic upgrades made to the property at the expense of the greenway group go to the benefit of the landowner, as do any revenues that the added traffic and tourism through the site may bring for him/her. Such an agreement may occur on the whole or a portion of the land and may last in term from one year to perpetuity. Caveats to Temporary Agreements: When granting a long term lease or management agreement to the greenway group for the establishment of trail rights-of-way and land/facility upgrades, such permits are usually consecrated through a one dollar fee and considerations such as liability protection and property tax relief on that portion of the land being used. For the particularly uneasy landowner, a revocable lease may be instituted, where the temporary agreement can be ended immediately if terms or conditions such as safety and maintenance are not sustained. This acts well to alleviate much of the fear and doubt that a landowner often carries into such negotiations. 3. Easements Easements are the most common means of sorting out the public/private issues that often revolve around the implementation of a greenway or trail system. Essentially, easements are the sale, lease, or donation of only a specific portion of the owner's land for the implementation of the greenway. Easements are popular for a landowner due to their flexibility in establishing opportunities and constraints, and in their clear definition of uses, management demands, boundaries, and facility construction. Likewise, Thesis 2000 76 Fraser River Greenway easements work well for the greenway group in that procurement of lands is usually less-than-fee simple or of below value rent, making easements affordable and easier to negotiate. Easements attained for greenway implementation are usually called affirmative easements. Affirmative easements essentially allow the group that has acquired the property rights full access to the site and the ability to erect structures and commit upgrades to its entirety. In return, the original landowner is most often entitled to tax incentives along with the rent or purchase price of the easement lands. In British Columbia, easements or covenants place restrictions on the use of land protected by the land title system. In this case, the landowner retains title to the land, but cannot develop it and thereby cedes management or control to a greenway group or trust. A greenway group or trust whom assumes responsibility for easements is essentially a multi-disciplinary body which acts as an urban conscience for the municipality or region. It attempts to steward partnerships to facilitate public realm planning and to work with the public to reallocate funds for acquiring, constructing, and regulating greenways. Concurrently, like all other systems of land acquisition, there are several forms which easements can take. Right of Public Access Easement: This represents the corner stone of easement acquisition for the interest of public greenways and trail systems. Right of Public Access essentially embraces the freedom of public use, including cycling, pedestrian, and equestrian activity. However, clauses are usually enacted that prohibit any motorized use, vandalism, hunting, or removal of vegetation by all but the landowner. Joint-Use Easement: This is essentially a multiple-party easement agreement, where two interest groups join forces (and combine financial assets) to secure dual use within the easement corridor. This methodology is becoming more popular, as a larger group of concerned individuals is supporting the acquisition of land rights/access. Often utility company's pair up with trail groups to create utility rights-of-way and trail development in conjunction with one another. This fully supports the ideal of sustainable land use. Thesis 2000 77 Fraser River Greenway Conservation Easement: While not addressing the needs of greenways fully, conservation easements may be enacted alongside Public Access Easements or for the development of ecological greenways (non-human). These easements are entered into so as to protect valued natural resources and govern the physical limits on use, development, and treatment of the land. PROACTIVE GREENWAY PLANNING Not only is it necessary to enter into discussion with landowners for access to lands for greenway implementation, but it is also necessary to regulate or legislate land use to curtail these issues in the future (Greenberg, et al., 1989). In essence, it is imperative that land use planners, municipalities, and local/district government's take into account future greenway goals so as to reduce the amount of costly and time consuming negotiation that is incurred in the land tenure process (Loriing and Schwarz, 1994). This may be done on the macro-scale, when designing Official Community Plans (OCP's) or at the micro-scale, when planning subdivisions or retail developments. The key however, is to have a visionary greenway and trail system plan so that the direction of growth can be monitored in conjunction with the proposed route of the pedestrian system. If designed holistically, growth can occur in harmony with ease of pedestrian movement, thus facilitating more user-friendly urbanization and increasingly cost-effective implementation (COV, 1995). Starting with the macro-scale, it is essential to implement the immersion of greenway planning with the O C P or Community Master Plan (as it has been known in the past). Throughout the 1950's and 1960's, Master Plans failed to provide for green infrastructure; instead, they campaigned for green parks scattered widely about through communities, with little in the way of "green links" (Mertes and Hall, 1996). The only provision available for greenway retrofits was through preservation zones along creeks, streambeds, shorelines, non-developable natural terrain, and recreational areas (BCGov., 1996). However, these preservation areas, while providing for possible ecological greenways, are not often compatible with human use (or the blending of a natural and human corridor is not feasible). Thus, it is necessary to plan for these Thesis 2000 78 Fraser River Greenway human use recreation and transportation corridors prior to development (COV, 1995; Gittings, et al, 1996). By planning for the long term and looking five, ten, or twenty years into the future, the process of land acquisition can be on-going and pro-active, rather than retro-active and expensive. Continuing on the macro-scale, zoning is a tool that is readily available to land use planners and is heavily ingrained into the psyche of urban development. Zoning affords the opportunity to place restrictions and levies onto land before development occurs (BCGov., 1995). As well, overlay zones can be established in areas of current zoning that will compensate for deficiencies in the promotion of greenway establishment. Overlay zones allow for legislation along certain feature areas of a land parcel that is zoned for non-greenway or non-ecological purposes (BCGov., 1995). This is effective as a way to create a uniform contiguous zoning over a linear route which may have several underlying zoning classifications. Essentially, zoning acts as the means by which land can be legislated on a city or region-wide scale to fulfill the needs of greenway planning (Wronski, 1989). When looking at the procurement of lands before development on the micro-scale, there are several site and situation specific tools that come into play. The important thing to remember, is that each of these tools are only effective if implemented in the early planning stage of new development, so that the campaign of pro-active holistic design is adhered to (Greenberg, 1989). In this day of sustainable design, utilizing Cluster Development incentives is perhaps an ideal way to procure land for greenways, while facilitating the needs of a developer (BCGov, 1995). In a cluster development, the developer is encouraged by way of density bonuses to focus built form into a more densified portion of the land, thereby leaving more public open space and green corridors, which can subsequently be used for habitat encouragement and/or greenway construction. By controlling the form of development on a parcel of land, a bonus number of properties can be sold and the needs of public space are fulfilled, thus improving both profit for the developer and quality of life for the recreationalist/trail user (BCGov., 1995). Along a similar line of thought, Subdivision Regulations can be enforced before any development plans are in place. These regulations require the developer to reach Thesis 2000 79 Fraser River Greenway certain performance standards and place the "burden of proof on the developer to use caution when developing on sensitive ecosystems, wetlands, etc. (Loriing and Schwarz, 1994; BCGov. , 1996). Subdivision Regulations are in place through legislation, and thus limit the need to provide incentives or bonuses to the developer, thus making the application more feasible to the municipality. Rather, the rules are instituted through legal enforcement and must be adhered to by the developer (Loriing and Schwarz, 1994). With this kind of strategy in place, it is realistic to demand the retention or creation of trails as a mandatory part of subdivision (COV, 1995). If no essential part of a greenway system occurs within a development parcel, further measure can be taken to ensure that the development company pays "cash-in-lieu" towards a greenway fund. Ultimately, legislation that is activated prior to subdivision planning is the ideal goal for greenway planners in terms of ease and cost effectiveness of implementation (COV, 1995; Blueways, 1999). Finally, policy can require the enactment of development right transfers (Mertes and Hall, 1996). The Transfer of Development Rights (TDR) is utilized in a way similar L to density bonuses. If a developer owns a parcel of land with moderate density zoning that is situated in a key greenway and habitat location, the developer may (in conjunction with the municipality) trade that land for higher density value parcels nearby which do not conflict with greenway development (BCGov., 1995). Tools such as this are only effective if there is enabling legislation in effect and if the landowner is willing to sell development rights. While not as easy to implement as other tools, TDR's are highly lucrative when the permanent procurement of highly valued greenway and ecological land is deemed invaluable. URBAN E C O L O G Y AND HABITAT Ecology is the scientific study of the interrelationships of plants, animals, and the environment. In recent years, the word has sometimes been misused as a synonym for environment (Liddle, 1997). The principles of ecology are useful in many aspects of the related fields of conservation, wildlife management, forestry, agriculture, and pollution control. The word ecology (Greek, oikos, "house," and logos, "study o f ) is generally Thesis 2000 80 Fraser River Greenway believed to have been coined by Ernst Haeckel, who used and defined it in 1869 (Mcintosh, 1986). The historical roots of ecology lie not only in natural history, but in physiology, oceanography, and evolution as well. It has occasionally been called scientific natural history (a phrase originated by Charles Elton) because of its origin and its heavy reliance on measurement and mathematics (Mcintosh, 1986). Ecology is variously divided into terrestrial ecology, fresh-water ecology (limnology), and marine ecology, or into population ecology, community ecology, and ecosystem ecology (Liddle, 1997). It is both completely reasonable and completely ludicrous to place the terms urban and ecology one after the other. On one end this is perhaps the greatest oxymoron, yet on the other, the urban environment is one large living, diverse organism. In Douglas Paterson's search for the definition of the words urban and city, he too was led to answers of both structure and formality - of answers of softness and emotion (1996). According to Paterson, the word Urban has its roots in the Greek word "Urbs", or the stones of a city. The stones speak of the formation of a city to meet utilitarian needs of survival and sustenance and shelter. In contrast, the word city derives from "Civitas", a term that speaks about "emotions, rituals, and convictions that take form in a city." (Paterson, 1996). Where Paterson seeks to unite these two opposites in a rather literal sense (where structural form meets emotional/spiritual function), it also makes sense to look at the union of hard and soft, of concrete and vegetation. Where urban speaks to the physicality of the built form and human industriousness, city speaks to the materiality and sensuousness of the earth and the land that the city has been built upon and relies upon for its support. The city cannot be without the ecology, yet ecology can be without the city. This reliance on urban ecology is largely passive in the modern city. We take the parks, the trees, the soil, and the paths as a given, yet what would a city be without them? While it may be an exaggerated question, this is the crisis that is approaching. In our move to modernize, Vancouverites often look beyond their city for nature; to the setting that surrounds them and embraces them, yet is beyond their tangible grasp (FREMP, 1996). It is the ecology that is within the touch of the city that should concern urban designers (FREMP, 1996). The Fraser River is a key example of such a place. Thesis 2000 81 Fraser River Greenway In the urban definition, the North Fraser has embraced the stones of development and great industry, while neglecting the responsibility of the "oikos" or the "house" that contains this great city. Indeed, the urban environment is merely a middle organism that feeds off of the greater organism of ecology and environment - only with an insatiable appetite that must be curbed if urban ecology is to remain a successful and compatible oxymoron. The Ecology of Greenways Greenways offer a catalyst for the establishment and maintenance of urban ecology. As discussed earlier, the recreational greenway essentially forms a continuous ribbon over a diverse setting seeking to link communities, urban centers, and other nodes together (COV, 1995). This image of a ribbon also works in ah ecological sense. Just like human beings do not necessarily need large open spaces, ecological corridors are the heart of successful biodiversity within an urban environment (Liddle, 1997). Animals that exist within the confounds of a city environment often depend upon the rare and fragile "green" linkages that connect larger environmental "patches" together (Dramstad, et. Al , 1995). These movement corridors mimic the recreational and transportation function of the recreational greenway (Forman, 1986). As such, it is often suggested that urban greenways seek to provide both ecological and recreational linkages (Smith and Hellmund). To understand this concept in ecological terms, it is important to look at the notion of the "community." Organisms live together in assemblages called communities (Liddle, 1997).- Some communities are very small, such as those composed of invertebrates and decomposers living within a rotting log. Others may be as large as an entire forest. Communities are composed of both plants and animals. Each species is distributed according to its own biological requirements, which may be affected by other species (Liddle, 1997). For example, sugar maple seedlings require shade and may therefore mature easily in dense forests, whereas seedlings of eastern white pine require full sunlight for vigorous growth. Therefore, some species are sometimes associated with each other, but the exact degree of dependence is difficult to determine and has led to differences of opinion concerning the extent to which communities are Thesis 2000 82 Fraser River Greenway discrete entities. By tabulating all plants found along a line passing through adjacent communities on mountainsides, it has been shown that the distribution pattern of each species is independent of most others, suggesting a continuum rather than a few discrete communities (Kormondy, 1984). It is this continuum of a community that gives the essential evidence for the necessity of continuous environmental or ecological corridors. This need is emphasized in the urban environment when many large habitat patches are dispersed by great distances and ecologically unfriendly zones. The number of species within a community is called species diversity. Species diversity has two components, richness and evenness (Kormondy, 1984). If there are many species in a community, it is said to have a rich diversity. All species, however, are not always equally represented. If, as commonly happens, only a few species are abundant, the diversity is said to be uneven (Kormondy, 1984). If a community is made up of many species and each is relatively abundant, the community is considered relatively stable, because the reduction or removal of any one species would be far less important than the loss of an abundant species in a community where only a few are numerous (Kormondy, 1984). The urban environment is not an even environment, with most dominant species being invasives or scavengers. With the intensity of urban development and the lack of concern in industrial areas, the elimination of a species can be immediate and devastating to the ecological cycle of that community. It is this fragile state that the ecological greenways can help to remediate, by linking together other habitat communities, increasing diversity, and increasing species evenness (Van Der Ryn, 1996; Forman, 1986; Dramstad et. Al , 1995). If this can be attained, the ideal of true urban ecology is closer to ultimate realization. There are many theories revolving around the ideal integration of ecological corridors within the urban environment. However, there are some established constants that are determined as necessary for successful habitat retention. Perhaps the most important of these is the establishment of land "mosaics" (Dramstad, et.al, 1995; Forman, 1986). Mosaics are essentially the integration of many ecological corridors at certain key nodes or patches. The more corridors intersect, the greater the chance that ecological diversity and mixing will occur (Dramstad, et.al, 1995). When one looks at the proposals for an urban recreational greenway network it is immediately evident that Thesis 2000 83 Fraser River Greenway the system of trails and paths are choreographed to continuously meet and intersect to allow maximum userage and proximity to residential areas. Under Vancouver's Greenway policy, no residential dwelling should be more than a 25 minute walk or a 10 minute cycle to the nearest greenway (COV, 1995).. This kind of network, if designed to accommodate urban ecological demands, are also ideal for the housing and movement of habitat (Van Der Ryn, 1996). The more intersections that occur, the greater the species diversity. These results occur because the intersecting nodes often house both "interior" and "exterior" species (Dramstad, et al. , 1995). Dramstad, Olson, and Foreman define interior species as those that rely on larger patches or areas that have a high internal area to edge area ratio; these are illustrative of those environments that occur at intersections. Conversely, the same authors define edge species as those that seek the external portions of corridors, and often constitute the predators and invasive species in the biological order of urban ecology. As well, a network of corridors reduces the negative effects of inevitable gaps and disturbances in other corridors throughout the urban environment, as the efficiency and safety of movement is enhanced (Forman, 1986). If a diverse and integrative greenway network can be established, then urban ecology can become a positive and exciting reality. Finally, it is wise to address the notion of the "edge" environment that is established by virtue of any linear corridor - in this case, the North Fraser River. Any corridor that exists on the boundary between two very disparate environmental conditions often have the capacity for intensive ecological development (Liddle, 1997). This is due to the fact that these interfaces are often the areas where two or more different biological communities exist concurrently (Dramstad, et.al, 1995). In most situations, the urban edge condition is linear with hard edges, while a natural edge condition is ultimately curvilinear and complex. The adjacency to the Fraser River allows at least one edge of such an ecological corridor to be curvilinear, allow greater diversity in habitat and sheltering conditions. This is an opportunity that is rare in the urban environment, as cities usually homogenize or harden their natural edges under the guise of "tidiness" (FREMP, 1996). This is the case of the seawall condition around Stanley Park and much of English Bay and the West End. While this condition may Thesis 2000 84 Fraser River Greenway appear appealing to users, it is not conducive to quality of ecological life (FREMP, 1996). A large, convoluted, naturalized edge condition with a variety of intersections, nodes, and intermittent large patches is a real possibility along the North Fraser River -a possibility that may allow ecology to creep back into a presently hardened industrial environment. SYNTHESIS AND ANALYSIS - Can We Design Balance?: In this chapter we have addressed the core components of the thesis design, and it should now be evident as to the parameters that industry, ecology, and recreation have placed upon the site. With an understanding of industry within the urban context, it is clear how the urban environment is functionally dependent on the retention of industry as an economic basis. This is an interdependence that lies at the root of city formation throughout history, and remains today as a key determinant for many planning decisions and policies. Conversely, recreation is a rather new phenomenon in terms of city planning, with greenways being even more immature in its formal implications within the urban' environment. However, it is well documented that the recreational capacities of our cities are far below the demand by inhabitants, yet there is marginal open space remaining to include such facilities. This is the argument for a greenway-style intervention, where linear corridors and easements can be established on small parcels of land that will fulfill many recreational and educational demands of the urban environment, without the expense and difficulty associated with traditional park development. Finally, ecology is an element that is often neglected, forgotten, or taken for granted in the urban environment. We must begin to recognize that just as the city has its foundation in the structural elements of industry (the urbs), it also has its foundation in the ecological elements of habitat, soil, and resources that have formed much of the emotion and spirit of the city (the Civitas). It is an obligation to restructure and improve the ecological health of the city in order to ensure the survival of rare species and rare Thesis 2000 85 Fraser River Greenway environmental conditions - often the same conditions that make industry lucrative. Again, greenways offer a potential solution with a limited disturbance to the economic base of a region - in some cases, greenways may be an economic boon with an increase in site use, regional amenities, elevated land values, etc.. Ideally, a corridor-based ecological network will sustain a biological community within a modern, urban, human community. This is the essence of the thesis project; to establish a recreational and ecological environment that administers to the needs of existing industry, while recognizing the potential for responsible urban growth along the North Fraser River. Such a multi-lateral approach will inform a set of attainable goals and supplement those goals with objectives that will systematically fulfill the design endeavour. As such, it is now appropriate to conclude this section with these revised goals and subsequent objectives in order that the design process is pursued in a defensible manner that is responsive to the existing background, site context, literature, and precedent work. Brief Problem Statement: It is necessary to integrate the differing needs of foreshore and river ecology with water dependent industry through the use of greenway design as ecological buffer, recreational corridor, and public amenity. Detailed Problem Statement: Because of increased urban pressures on waterfront lands, a growing displacement of urban industry, a demand for increased recreational outlets, and the continuing loss of urban habitat, there is a need to illustrate (through sustainable design methodologies) that it is possible to create a waterfront greenway that mitigates these conflicts. Ideally, sustainable greenway design should resolve the confl ict between residential demands and the retention of resource-based industry, while providing opportunity for recreation, education, subsidiary smal l mixed enterprise, and ecological preservation or enhancement. From this problem, a set of goals are determined that give a sense of direction for which the thesis should take. Thesis 2000 86 Fraser River Greenway Goal #1: The proposed design will show that it is both necessary and desirable for the North shore of the North Fraser River between Knight Street and the Arthur Laing Bridge to become an integrated part of the Vancouver Greenways network. Goal #2: To create a design that meets the growing recreational and educational needs of the city through a sustainable approach that does not preclude the need for an industrial foreshore environment. Goal #3: To utilize site history (both natural and human) to establish a structure of scale and sensitivity that not only reflects the natural ecology of the river, but incorporates the surrounding communities and urban structure. Goal #4: To create a design that is inclusive of the great diversity found along the North Fraser and that establishes a situation of interaction between environment, industry, and recreation, rather than a situation of segregation. Goal #5: To make linkages to the surrounding community whenever possible. Linkages are not only physical, but are social and structural linkages that speak to consistency in architectural form, civic needs, and landscape interpretation that already exist adjacent to the site. Finally, to obtain these goals, a series of objectives have been established that will guide the project to its completion. • Develop a comprehensive site inventory of existing physical, social, and economic conditions. • Construct a map that is representative and inclusive of each of these inventories in order to locate key structures, nodes, or centres. • Construct six preliminary conceptual master plans that will begin to look at the location of a greenway structure, possible zoning revisions, and potentials of internal and external linkages (land use options). • Develop a revised master plan from a synthesis of the three land use options. • Establish a set of phasing recommendations to be representative of incremental growth. Thesis 2000 87 Fraser River Greenway • Demonstrate the implementation of the master plan by detailing a series of "typical" conditions and responses within the site. Typicals: Features, structures, or forms that will occur throughout the site and will represent the general structure of the design. • Evaluate the final design in terms of its ability to satisfy the project goals, and thereby determine its success in meeting the problem and hypothesis. Thesis 2000 88 Fraser River Greenway CHAPTER 3 SITE ANALYSIS AND ROUTE DEVELOPMENT I Planning and design is an iterative process. It is therefore important to adopt a methodology that is testable against itself, testable against existing precedent, offers multiple solutions, and can be replicated. In order to accommodate these needs, it is crucial to clearly define each of the steps that occur throughout the planning process and elaborate upon the objective, rationale, and result of each of these steps. The first of the site-specific tasks to be undertaken in this thesis was that of site analysis. In keeping with the need to justify and validate the process undertaken in the site analysis, each level of inventory and data collection was recorded and placed into a graphic format. While these graphics are visually provocative and say much about the nature of the site, they can fail to represent the rationale behind the decisions made. To resolve this issue, this chapter discusses each of the graphics represented in the Appendices and illustrates how they relate to each other. When each of these data layers are compiled and placed upon one another, they begin to form a map of opportunities and constraints. This map can then be used to form the initial framework for a successful greenway route. Using an overlay methodology promotes a rational, testable approach that elaborates upon the cognitive structure of a site and is usually developed through the analysis phase. Graphically, the analysis methodology is as follows: Thesis 2000 89 Fraser River Greenway o z D_ < Q O (fi < 5 MASS ANALYSIS Y TYPE MASS ANALYSIS MASS B' LYSIS UJ VOID ANA >-VOID ANA VOID B CD z D_ < D O CO co < 2 MAP A - 1 : MASSA/OID A N A L Y S I S - V o i d Situations Objective: By establishing a map of void or blank areas within the site, it is possible to suggest networks of open-space that could be further developed in the design process. This technique also begins to indicate the amount of space that is occupied by impermeable surfaces such as rooftops and pavement areas. Criteria: • Use on-site mapping and aerial photography to identify void spaces; • Void spaces can be: vacant lots, existing parks, open storage yards, parking lots, under-utilized industrial spaces, roadway interchanges, etc.; • Only identify void spaces greater than 100 square meters. Rationale: • Void areas often represent under-utilized areas within areas that face excessive developmental pressures; • Void areas may provide an opportunity for the development of an open-space network; • Areas near the foreshore environment may provide opportunity for habitat restoration or creation; • Viewsheds can be elaborated upon by the preservation of void areas; • Redevelopment potential may exist in under-utilized areas. Results: The Void Situation map proved to be an effective tool in highlighting large open spaces within the study area. Many of these voids begin to form a visual network of open spaces that may offer the potential for development into recreational and habitat corridors. The surprisingly large number of foreshore void areas proves promising in the development of new habitat opportunities. As well, the extent of void areas illustrates the quantity of industrial lands that are devoted to passive by-products of resource-based industry; largely storage and shipping. Thesis 2000 91 Fraser River Greenway MAP A-2: MASS/VOID ANALYSIS - Void Situation by Type Objective: When the location of void situations within the study site is known, it becomes necessary to understand the context of these voids. The objective, then, is to establish a typology of voids that would provide some evidence to the accessibility of these areas. Criteria: • Visit each of the void locations identified in Map A - l ; • Assess what type of land use occurs in each of these void areas; • Develop a classification typology of voids to minimize excessive description and redundancy in labeling; • Classify each of the voids into the following typologies: Water use storage areas, Shipping and storage, Parking, Vacant or for sale, City of Vancouver owned land, and Parks or park-like environments. Rationale: • Identification of site condition allows the recognition of void spaces that would be most receptive of greenway and industrial (re)development; • A n awareness of primary stakeholders are in these areas will allow for further research and land-use negotiation; • • To become aware of the specific needs of these void sites; • To establish what sites are most conducive to purchase. Results: When the void becomes a classified entity, its meaning and value is greatly enhanced. While the overlay of the void and void type maps may not result in different site selection, they illustrate a hidden layer of use and occupancy that may be placed on a void site. The identification of void types not only elaborates the location of industries, but provides a frame of reference into primary land-use patterns and the plausibility of identifying void spaces as potential design opportunities. The recognition of the limited number of parks and park-like Thesis 2000 93 Fraser River Greenway settings, and the rarity of completely vacant lands indicates the current lack of recreational/open-space opportunities within the site. These sites may prove valuable in the direction of Greenway and public open space as the design process progresses. Thesis 2000 94 Fraser River Greenway MAP A -3 : MASSA/OID ANALYSIS - Mass Situations Objective: The identification of mass areas is not merely the opposite of void areas, but represents a new pattern of land use within the study site. By simply analyzing the void map, the true bulk of land use on the site is often overlooked. A Mass Situation map provides information concerning built form, intensive land-use, and potentially undevelopable lands. Criteria: • Use on-site mapping and aerial photography to identify void spaces; • Mass spaces can be: industrial buildings, warehouse structures, resource processing facilities, public service facilities, parking structures, housing, and retail venues; • Only identify mass spaces over 100 square meters. Rationale: • Promotes the identification of areas where easy passage may not occur; • Develops an understanding of the intensity of built-form on the industrial urban landscape; • Begins to identify potential gaps or openings between large built forms; • Recognizes the potential extent of impervious surfaces within the site. Results: The establishment of a Mass Situation map provides insight into the intensity of land-use that occurs within the site. Not only does it become evident that there is substantial build-up on the site, but the intricacy of finding spaces between these large forms will be a challenge that will have to be faced in the design process. Finally, the occurrence of mass situations is rather homogenous throughout the site, with no one area facing more intensive build-up jthan others. This likely illustrates that no portion of the study site is more or less desirable for the purpose of industrial growth. Thesis 2000 96 Fraser River Greenway M A P A-4: MASSA/OID ANALYSIS - Mass Situation by Type Objective: When identifying mass situations within a study area, a rational map of built-form is established. However, the lack of specific information concerning the built-form limits the mass analysis. To make decisions concerning the built structure of the study site, the mass areas must be classified into a system of types that may provide insight into the permanence and/or malleability of these locations. Criteria: • Identify, through on-site analysis the specific nature of the mass forms identified in Map A-3; • Classify these mass forms into a typological system for greater clarity of use and more manageable decision-making; • Identify each mass as one of: Resource processing, Other Processing, Storage or warehousing, Corporate or commercial, and Residential. Rationale: • Classification of mass areas highlights those most difficult to acquire or access for greenway/residential development; • Encourages the identification of built-form that may be semi-permanent or flexible in use/occupancy; • Recognizes predominant industrial zones, residential zones, or commercial zones along the site, which may in turn direct design development. Results: The identification of mass situations by their specific type is very important to the design process, as an understanding of primary land-holders and site use identifies measures that must be accounted for when establishing a route. Soft industries such a shipping and storage, as well as residential and commercial developments are likely to be more conducive to recreational and social integration than are sites that are devoted to heavy industry. Establishing a route and zoning considerations that favour these sites is a valuable tool in the design process. Those areas near Prince Edward Street Thesis 2000 98 Fraser River Greenway represent the greatest potential for mixed-used zoning and multi-layered developments, while the space occupied by Doman Enterprises represents a heavy industrial build-up that is likely to be inaccessible. Thesis 2000 99 Fraser River Greenway 100 M A P A-5: OPPORTUNITIES & CONSTRAINTS - Access Objective: Access is a key element in any design proposal that seeks to bring public activity into an area where industrial activity is predominant. It is necessary to locate areas where site access is most prevalent or easiest, by both land and water. As well, this level of analysis should seek to discover those areas where barriers to access occur. These barriers may be penetrable (by way of controlled pedestrian crossings, signage, etc.) or they may be currently inaccessible (due to industrial occupancy, riverfront location, fencing, etc.) By developing a map of access opportunities and constraints, the means by which people enter and move through the site may be more easily established. Criteria: • Look for North/South connections throughout the site that have controlled crossings, developed sidewalk circulation systems, and link the site to other portions of the City; • Highlight those areas where movement within and to/from the site are most prevalent so as to identify activity nodes; • Identify those areas of private or public lands that are inaccessible by virtue of dangerous access, industrial environment, habitat sensitivity, physical barrier, or transportation-based barrier (road, railway, etc.). Rationale: • To begin to identify opportunities for increasingly broad connections; • The recognition of areas deemed inaccessible and the potential to ameliorate this condition where possible; • To develop an archive of nodes or centres to establish where arrival or departure will most likely occur. Results: An analysis of site accessibility for residents of greater Vancouver and Richmond emphasizes the lack of convenient public entry points. Marine Drive offers few safe-crossing options, despite the abundance of cross-streets that enter into the site. As well, the waterfront is largely inaccessible from land to water and from water to land. Thesis 2000 101 Fraser River Greenway This is largely the result of industrial monopolization of the waterfront, and/or the lack of developed water access points. Finally, while the railway lines along Kent Avenue and the roadway itself, are the primary East-West linkages through the site, there are no provisions for pedestrians wishing to travel in the same direction. Indeed, accessibility can be recognized as one of the most important and most challenging issues in the development of this site design. Thesis 2000 102 Fraser River Greenway 103 MAP A-6: OPPORTUNITIES & CONSTRAINTS - Open Space and Recreation Objective: Open Space sites are similar in some extents to void sites. However, open spaces ideally represent those areas that are greater than 200 square meters, are currently vacant, and show some signs of current recreational use (whether it be legitimate/organized use or not). 200 square meters is a crucial number, as this amount of space will facilitate a wide variety of structured recreational activities, as well as provide the opportunity for programmed festivals or public gatherings. As well, constraints against the establishment of an open-space network need to be identified to assess the plausibility of creating recreational/open space nodes or anchors along the proposed route. Criteria: • Identify, through on-site analysis and aerial photography, the existence of site over 200 meters square; • Identify potential clusters and networks of open spaces; • Identify disparate open spaces and those spaces separated by large tracts of highly developed industrial lands; • Identify on-site, which of these areas are currently receiving recreational use (dog-walking, non-organized games, bird-watching, etc.). Rationale: • To understand the potential of the site to accept increased open-space development; • To identify multiple open-space locations that may easily be tied together into recreational and networks; • Recognize the occurrence of large industrial barriers between identified open-spaces, highlighting difficult route locations and redevelopment necessities. Results: Large open spaces are extremely rare within the study site, yet represent a key element in attracting potential Greenway users and residential development. The identification of key open space sites near the Knight Street Bridge, Prince Edward Thesis 2000 104 Fraser River Greenway Street, and the Oak Street Bridge may serve as potential sites to develop increased recreational opportunities. As well, these open spaces may guide design decisions regarding both residential redevelopment and route choices. The recognition of the large area of industrial lands along the North Fraser between Ontario Street and Heather Street illustrates a potential concern in route development. Identification of this constraint early on is valuable in that other maps can then be analysed for potential alternative solutions for breaching this industrial gap. Thesis 2000 105 Fraser River Greenway M A P A-7: OPPORTUNITIES & CONSTRAINTS - Habitat Objective: The primary objective in assessing the habitat that occurs in the study site is to identify areas of existing habitat and areas dangerously degraded or unable to support habitat in their current state. The preservation of habitat and the rehabilitation of disturbed lands are two of the most important elements in attaining a sustainable design on each of the levels in which the term is applied. The identification of potential habitat areas is also significant, as these areas may represent areas where minimal effort is necessary to establish a true habitat corridor that coincides with the recreational greenway. Criteria: • To identify existing habitat through the identification of indicator species on site and data provided by FREMP off-site; • Identify on-site and through aerial photography those areas that are highly degraded. These are identified by high propensities of weed species, hardened seawall edges, and industrial encroachment within a minimum 15 meter buffer as recognized by FREMP and DFO; • Assess all open-space areas as potential habitat nodes that support the formation of a larger network. Rationale: • Identification of existing habitat to minimally retain the existing natural order of the site; • Promote the development or rehabilitation of habitat areas to create an ecological greenway that coincides with the recreational/interpretive greenway; • Recognize the potential of a diversity of habitat types to support a greater variety of species and encourage biotic growth concurrent with industrial users. Results: Existing habitat is astonishingly low within the study site and is outweighed by highly degraded environment almost two to one. When taken in the context of urban development, the site is of great habitat concern due to high levels of impervious surfaces, lack of vegetation, and inadequate treatment of industrial by-products. Those areas identified as having habitat value or habitat potential meet the requirements to Thesis 2000 107 Fraser River Greenway minimal levels - levels that are not recognized by F R E M P in their classification of habitat areas along the Fraser River (FREMP, 1996). Thesis 2000 108 Fraser River Greenway 109 MAP A-8 : OPPORTUNITIES & CONSTRAINTS - Interpretive Sites Objective: While this is perhaps the most subjective of the Opportunity and Constraint maps, it is important to assess the site under the mandate of interpretive potential. It is necessary to identify those sites that offer some interpretive potential to the future greenway user, whether this be industrial, ecological, or cultural interpretation. As well, those areas that are not conducive to interpretive input should be noted, due to potential site hazards, access issues, or incompatibility with current land uses. Criteria: • Identify, through on-site analysis those areas of cultural, ecological, or industrial importance or interest to visitors of the area; • Locate those sites which are not available to the public for interpretive opportunities due to safety considerations (WCB regulations), despite interpretive interest or relevance. Rationale: • Identification of interest areas and educational opportunities can establish key nodes or stops along the proposed greenway; • Recognition of interpretive sites and the dissemination of information creates user awareness and appreciation of the site; • Development of education objectives creates a corridor that is desirable for individuals and groups with varying needs; • Identification of hazard areas promotes safe route planning. Results: While it is necessary to subjectively decide what elements are of most interest to potential users of the site, it is crucial to develop an interpretive component along with the trail itself. The distribution of industrial, ecological, and cultural-interpretive opportunities on the site is rather even. This provides an interpretive/educational experience that is successful on many levels for many different users. The historical context of traditional river uses and the old Fraser River bridge, the industrial context of Thesis 2000 110 Fraser River Greenway resource processing and the railroad, and the ecological context of habitat enhancement and animal life give vitality to a site that is often seen as dirty, non-public, and inhospitable. Thesis 2000 111 Fraser River Greenway 112 MAP A-9: VIEWING OPPORTUNITIES Objective: The study site is located on a South-facing slope that falls from Marine Drive to the North Fraser River. This geographic position naturally gives rise to exciting and beautiful viewing opportunities. An analysis of viewsheds within the site needs to take place on three levels, with the identification of three view types: Long-range views, Mid-range views, and Short-range views. This division of view types identifies what kind of development should be focused at certain view locations to best capitalize upon both scenic quality and sightlines. Criteria: • Identify, through on-site analysis all areas where views within and beyond the site occur free of built-form obstruction; • Classify these views into one of the three typologies illustrated above with the following specifics: 1. Long-range views: Views greater than 1 km 2. Mid-range views: Views 500 m to 1 km 3. Short-range views: View less than 500 m; • Locate the key location for the view and the span of its visible range. Rationale: . • The recognition and preservation of view corridors promotes the potential citing of route rest-stops, park areas, and amenities; • View opportunities can be a catalyst to residential desirability; • Identification of key views can act as interpretive elements providing more depth to the visual experience. Results: The site consists of comparatively disproportionate amounts of long and short-range views, in comparison to mid-range views. The views from Kent Road are often obscured by heavy waterfront industrial development, and as such inhibit most of these moderate views. Strong, but directed long-range views occur from Marine Drive and act Thesis 2000 113 Fraser River Greenway as powerful draws into the site and down to the water. These long-range views have the potential to expand into vast viewsheds, especially atop each of Oak and Knight Street Bridges. These views promote strong awareness of the site and its context along the River. Short, but broad views up and down the river and across to Mitchell Island and Richmond occur along the waterfront whenever the foreshore is accessible. These viewing opportunities are intimate and draw the viewer into the immediacy of the site and its current surroundings. These views are well suited to greenway and residential development, as they are focused on the sense of the site and offer security within the area. Thesis 2000 114 Fraser River Greenway 115 MAP A-10: EXISTING PHYSICAL CONDITION - Non-Evaluative Objective: The existing physical condition of the site does not seek to apply any sense of evaluation or weighting into the analysis. Rather, this form of analysis is necessary to simply identify existing site users, specific locations of features, arterial roadways, rail corridors, current access points, etc. The objective is to establish a baseline of information that can be applied to the previous nine analysis maps. This should be done so objective information can be applied to information that may be somewhat subjective, and provide a more meaningful/realistic application of the data. Criteria: • Identify, through on-site analysis, aerial photography, and development permits, the specific nature of various physical site elements; • The classification of these site elements into core entities which can be compared, assessed, and discussed. They are: 1. Water access points 2. Bridges and/or piers 3. Points of interest or activity 4. Public parks 5. Residential areas 6. Log booming locations 7. Vehicular arterials 8. Rail corridors 9. Businesses and Industries (further identified by specific name). Rationale: • To create a baseline of information that can be applied to other analytical maps; • Develop a catalog of existing physical conditions within the site to understand the primary structure and sustenance of the site; • To identify the specific land-users between Kent Road and the North Fraser River to assess the type of use: Resource dependent industry; Industries requiring waterfront access for material movement; Industries that support water-dependent uses (as identified in Chapter 1). Thesis 2000 116 Fraser River Greenway Results: The creation of a baseline physical inventory is a useful tool in which to assess other analytical processes. While it offers little in the way of site evaluation, it does provide a foundation for comparison and comprehension to occur. By identifying key nodes, industries, arteries, and access points that are currently established within the site, a template for future expansion can be established. The template that stems from an understanding of existing conditions, will most successfully integrate the current necessities of the site, with the proposals that will be established in the design process. Thesis 2000 117 Fraser River Greenway M A P O V E R L A Y S - Getting Meaning out of Analysis Site inventory is the first phase of physical site design. Upon completion of the inventory, the data needs to be interpreted in order to apply it to a design process. This interpretation of site inventory data has been explicated in many different ways, all yielding excellent design results when used in the appropriate context. In the context of a pre-design initiative such as this thesis, the project has a very real set of circumstances based largely on the natural physical environment and the site's built form. When dealing with a rather concrete urban design problem that seeks a specific and definitive intervention (such as a greenway), it is most useful to apply the site inventory information using an overlay methodology. The overlay technique is a method often attributed to Warren Manning and was placed into common usage and respect by the great Landscape Architect, Ian McHarg. With this technique, each successive layer of the site inventory is "layed" atop the previous layer. This layering effect forms a composite map that illustrates the results of several levels of inventory. The result of the overlay methodology is a map that is representative of trends and weaknesses in the inventoried landscape. Areas that have multiple layers of positive attributes appear darker than those areas that have less consistency between layers. These gradations in darkness over multiple layers then form a pattern of design intervention - from most desirable to least desirable location for design to occur. This methodology can also be performed as a measure of non-desirable design attributes or design constraints. Again, when site inventory maps are developed to recognize areas of design constraint at multiple levels, an overlay methodology will define those areas most adverse to greenway development. The same gradation from dark to light occurs as overlays are added, and form a hierarchy of developable versus non-developable environments; this time with an emphasis on those least qualified for greenway use. This is often called a composite constraint map, whereas that which measures positive attributes is most often called a composite opportunities map. To develop a more sophisticated and thorough overlay map, one more step should be taken. When both composite constraint and opportunity maps are developed, they should be overlaid upon one another, to illustrate where potential conflicts may Thesis 2000 119 Fraser River Greenway occur between the two. Given varying criteria, the two maps may have areas of both positive and negative attributes. A final overlay will exacerbate those areas, and allow successful design that mitigates or resolves conflicts that may not have been recognized using only a constraint or opportunity map. Upon development of this final Composite Opportunities and Constraints map, it is now possible to apply the inventory to design. Knitting together positive greenway attributes, while avoiding those that constrain the route, forms a "line of best fit" through the site. Often there is no one "best" route, but a variety of options become available. No route will ever have the potential of addressing all positive site attributes unless it takes an inconvenient and convoluted route. Similarly, all routes will have to mitigate issues of constraint through creative design, as they will inevitably have to pass through some areas identified as not conducive to greenway development. It is this weaving together of routes from composite maps that provides meaning to the site inventory and develops the foundation for a successful greenway design. M A P A - 1 1 : COMPOSITE OPPORTUNITIES Objective: As illustrated in the flowchart at the start of the chapter, this map is the amalgamation and overlay of maps A-1 through A-10, with the exception of maps A -3 and A-4. The overlay of these eight site inventory maps will develop a composite map that illustrates those areas with a strong capacity for greenway development within the mandates of sustainable design - ecology, economics, and cultural context. Each of the identified locations should illustrate a high potential for supporting increased recreational and social development, while encouraging or not disrupting existing water-dependent industrial uses. Concurrently, several areas should be identified that meet many of these prerequisites for design implementation, but do not satisfy all elements of sustainable design. These need to be indicated on the map, and may serve to act as linkages of best fit between those areas of strong design opportunity. Criteria: • Overlay maps A-1 through A-10, with the exception of A -3 and A-4; • Develop a composite map that illustrates those areas most suitable for sustainable greenway design; Thesis 2000 120 Fraser River Greenway • Establish areas that are moderately suitable for sustainable greenway design. Rationale: The rationale for choosing each of the selected opportunities through the overlay technique is difficult to translate from graphic format into iterative text. However, the development of a matrix to cross-reference each opportunity location to a specific landscape situation (addressed in each of the overlays) is a useful tool for establishing the validity of the overlay methodology. Each of the identified opportunities on Map A-11, are classified as numerical units along the top of the matrix. The landscape situations assessed in the site inventory appear down the left hand side of the matrix. Each unit is given a correlation between each of the landscape situations ranging from high correlation to no correlation. This matrix can then be used to dissect the Composite Opportunities map and understand the specifics of the landscape as it occurs at each site. As well, it can identify which positive attributes are most reflective of that particular location, (see matrix following discussion of Map A-12) Thesis 2000 121 Fraser River Greenway 122 M A P A -12 : COMPOSITE CONSTRAINTS Objective: This map is developed from the overlay of site inventory maps A -3 through A-10. The exact overlay methodology can be seen in the methodology flowchart at the start of the chapter. The objective in the creation of this map is to establish a composite image of those areas that are least receptive to sustainable greenway development. These sites likely fail to fulfill any of the mandates of sustainable design, or offer extreme safety concerns to public users. Unlike map A -11, there is no recognition of areas of moderate constraint. This is done deliberately as any strong physical constraint that limits the feasibility of sustainable greenway design must be mitigated if the route is to pass through that location. This is true whether it be a location with multiple constraints or a location with only one constraint. Criteria: • Overlay maps A-3 through A-10; • Develop a composite map that illustrates those areas not suitable for sustainable greenway design. Rationale: As in map A -11 , the rationale for identifying individual constraint locations is better understood in matrix format. The two matrices follow the next map. Thesis 2000 123 Fraser River Greenway 124 1 fill" §1*1 1 S i £ f i l l i l l s i f f I S CO CO UJ to CO < a: O Q. OL O : X a: -C & Q . o s •5 o i CO UJ i l l • m 3 1 1 • • i • m i l i II i •• i i n i i • i • i • i i i i II i i • i i i II i II i i i i i i " -• II • •• •• i i > II • i i i HI < E < t CO UJ 0-< o CO o CO >- K K O s < o. g 3 •D (0 lie to m 118 < c c 3 •c o a. a. O o u X UJ 1| o > I 8 II 11 UJ Si E a> i d < c c 3 r o Q. a O •o o o o < c f o a a. O e to O z E o o m 125 CO CD i — < 8 c-| i i 8 * 5 81 i £ CD 0-! c *" X S 2* i s To » > <D 11 6 o —J 2 LU co (0 LU CO CO < CO z O o I CM X or >< or CO 2 h-co O o LU O < 0-co LU 0. o CO < LU or < m z> CO LU CO I I I I I I .v.-.I CM I < CO LU 0. < o CO D CO >- a: or o a. 9 B M i l l I I CO CO to to 00 00 2 oo O W g 3 t. n o > •c J f i ! s 2 | 0 _ 15 £ 11 | I 1 » 2 o 0) CD JO O E £> 3 OJ z a I a. +J c CD E a o v > a Q O c o c i to c o o .£ U) i f ca I c o c I (A c o o 3 2 CD co I O Z a: o o 126 MAP A-13: COMPOSITE OPPORTUNITY AND CONSTRAINT (Overlay of Maps A-11 and A-12) Objective: The goal of this map is to graphically super-impose the composite opportunities and composite constraints maps on top of one another. The resultant map should highlight those areas where no conflict between opportunity and constraint occur, thereby offering high potential for sustainable greenway development. This final overlay will also highlight conflicting areas that may or may not be suitable for the route to travel through. Each of these conflict points must be mitigated on an individual design basis, in order to successfully address the concerns that arise in constraint locations. Criteria: • Overlay maps A-11 and A-12; • Develop a composite map that illustrates those areas most suitable for sustainable greenway design; • Identify those areas where conflict between opportunity and constraint occur. Rationale: • The development of such a map will provide the framework for all potential route design; • Recognize those areas that are most conducive to industrial retention, residential development, mixed-use zoning, open-space design, and public accessibility; • The creation of multiple route options that take advantage of a variety of opportunities, while taking into consideration viewshed locations; • Recognize those sites that are conducive to the rehabilitation and restoration of habitat environments (both foreshore and inland) while concurrently accommodating recreational greenway potential. Results: The. overlaying of the composite opportunities map with the composite constraints map led to both expected and unexpected results. Most surprising was the congruence in proportion of both opportunities and constraints. While the site at first glance appears dominated by industrial activity and intensive commercial and storage Thesis 2000 127 Fraser, River Greenway facilities, there is a substantial amount of space with minimal occupation, civic occupation, or no occupation, as well as space capable of incorporating greenway design into existing structure. This combination of no occupation and mixed-use potential is most prevalent along Prince Edward Road from Marine Drive to the North Fraser. This entire stretch of road has the potential to link the site to Vancouver as a whole, provide open-space development, facilitate residential growth, interpret industrial and cultural heritage, and accommodate habitat rehabilitation. Also unexpected, was the propensity to accept development near and under both the Oak Street and Knight Street bridges. While bridges are often seen as places of darkness and insecurity, these two locations offer ample open-space, limited industrial activity, potential public water access, and increased habitat capacity. As well, the bridges strongly anchor either end of the most highly industrialized land remaining in Vancouver. This strength on each end accentuates the character of the internal portion of the site, making the experience more potent by juxtaposing open space with intensive land-use. Finally, Kent Avenue was expected to provide a strong opportunity for greenway design. While it does offer some opportunity along its length, the impact of the railway and the road itself does not complement recreational and ecological design. The route is perhaps more conducive to the City of Vancouver Bikeways strategy, where convenience and directness play a strong role in route definition. While Kent Avenue will play a key role in linkage between disparate route choices and connection north and south, it has too many constraints to become the dominant linear route. Thesis 2000 128 Fraser River Greenway 129 S U M M A R Y AND DIRECTION: Site inventory and analysis is the formative step to strong planning and design endeavours. While site inventory is often done quickly so as to reach the design process faster, this thesis has attempted to fully explore the validity of strong site awareness. By carefully and thoroughly analyzing, exploring, researching, and cataloguing the site, the level of data that enters into the design process is both comprehensive and informative. Not only does this information inform the designer, it informs the design, ideally making the design work successfully on a greater number of levels. By manually recording site inventory information and manually mapping the data, an acute awareness of site context is established. This awareness is compounded by the power of the composite maps created. Strong site knowledge and a careful overlay procedure will elevate the complexity and quality of the design. The recognition of strong opportunities and the careful mitigation of constraints and site conflicts will lead to the development of viable and testable preliminary route designs. These designs then, will be amalgamated into a final product that not only offers enjoyable and useable design, but fulfills the goals of sustainability and expresses the level of site intimacy in which the analysis represents. It is at this point that site planning and design begins and research and inventory ends. All data, history, precedent studies, and research must now be integrated into a design that expresses this information in a successful, coherent form. The first step of this design process is the determination of potential routes. From these potential routes will stem a solution that maximizes ecology, industry, and recreational opportunity in a way that is beautiful, accessible, and safe for all users. Thesis 2000 130 Fraser River Greenway CHAPTER 4 FINAL ROUTE DESIGN AND DISCUSSION The process of developing potential Greenway routes through the industrial portion of the North Arm area evolved from the assessment of the final Opportunities and Constraints overlay. This level of analysis, along with the scoring system developed in the matrices, identified those areas that were not only desirable, but necessary, to integrate into the design of the route. However, the method used to connect these sites was varied and rather complicated. There proved to be a multiplicity of ways to tie the essential route features together, all of which involved weaving around and skirting areas deemed unfit for Greenway development and public immersion. Potential routes varied from rather linear routes, primarily following existing roadways, to convoluted and twisting routes that might appear almost haphazard in their quest to maximize route opportunities. In order to mitigate this diversity in route selection, it was necessary to adjust potential route choices to the existing policy, reviewed earlier. This incorporation of policy statements and design goals as stated by the City of Vancouver, the North Fraser Port Authority, and the Fraser River Estuary Management Program allowed the route to begin to take a form that had a viable and defensible structure. From this policy directive, it remained possible to derive a variety of route options with increasingly subtle variances that were more representative of the goals of Greenway design as identified in civic planning strategies. Two potential routes that met a wide variety of identified opportunity areas, while remaining rather fluid and direct in their orientation began to emerge: 1. A strict policy-based route that derived its design from tight adherence to City of Vancouver Greenways strategies; and 2. A more, varied route derived from adherence to central policy initiatives, while incorporating a more fluid integration of opportunity sites. Alternative options, that explored some of the nuances of the site, addressed slightly different policy initiatives, and sought to maximize site opportunities were developed from these two route options. The assessment and scoring of these route options was then undertaken using a strategy often found in modern Geographic Information System (GIS) theory. The Thesis 2000 131 Fraser River Greenway ability to analyse a route and apply a numerical criteria to each of its components is a useful tool in addressing the viability of design. However, it is imperative to provide some criteria to the scoring strategy utilized. GIS systems often utilize a system of weighted categories in order to more accurately reflect the importance of specific issues to the site design. While GIS facilities were unavailable for this thesis, the same notion of scoring and weighted evaluation can occur manually and continue to provide defensible results. In this case, the scoring system was broken into six primary categories: Ecology and Habitat; Industry; Land Use; Recreation; and Connections. These categories represent the key elements necessary to achieve sustainable design as discussed earlier. Within these six primary categories were several sub-categories that further identified the goals of route design. Each of these sub-categories were given a weighting of 1 to 3, and were each scored on a five point scale (0-4). On this five point scale, a score of 0 represents a route that completely fails to achieve the goal, while a score of 4 represents a route that completely fulfills the goal. When a weighting of 3 is applied, for example, a goal receiving a score of 4 would achieve a final score of 12, thus giving it high presence in the final rating of the route. Weighting was determined by the central concerns of sustainability as discussed in the first two chapters. All goals promoting the retention of industry (economic sustainability), the rehabilitation of habitat (ecological sustainability), and the integration of public and public accessibility to/from the site (social/cultural sustainability) were given weights of 3. Those goals that directly supported these sustainable mandates were given a weight of 2 and those goals that were largely subsidiary (but still pertinent to route design) were given a weight of 1. Finally, all scores for each route were totaled, with the highest and lowest scores removed from the total, in order to offer a normalized final score that may be free from skewed data (the scoring spreadsheet is found following the final route description). This system then provided a testable and replicable system for Greenway route design that would highlight those route options most favourable to a sustainable Greenway design. Thesis 2000 132 Fraser River Greenway 133 MAP B-3 & B-4: ROUTE OPTION #1 - Strict Policy-Based Objective: The objective of this option was to establish a route that utilized the current thinking and methodology for Greenway design within the City of Vancouver's Blueways and Greenways Departments (as discussed in detail in earlier chapters). This route would also facilitate the goals and design ideologies of the new North Fraser Port Authority Land Use Plan. With these two policies at hand, the resultant route would be defensible and testable against existing city Greenways and civic policy. As well, it would engage a maximum number of key features, while remaining cost effective and easy to implement, with a minimum of land rights and easement negotiations. Finally, the route would allow some redevelopment to occur in order to provide some diversity and mixed-use opportunity to the area. Criteria: • Develop routes that occur largely on city-owned or city-controlled lands. • Concentrate any new mixed-use developments and zoning around one concentrated area so as not to displace industry and ensure easier implementation. • Use roadways and existing right-of-ways to reach the maximum number of potential Greenway features. • Provide multiple access points to the waterfront from both the route itself and the residential community to the North of Marine Drive. • Create urban habitat corridors that correspond closely with the Greenway route to ensure movement of urban habitat through and beyond the site. • Develop a mixed network of linear pathways and open spaces for a diversity of experiences and user needs. Rationale: • Greenways are recreational corridors that should link a variety of interesting and interpretive experiences together in a way that is both inviting and convenient; • Greenways should also provide opportunities for urban habitat, by establishing a matrix of open space patches and planted habitat corridors throughout the route's entirety; Thesis 2000 135 Fraser River Greenway • Routes that follow roadways and existing right-of-ways are more economical and logistically feasible to implement in a timely fashion; • Access to the waterfront and valuable site features that occur off of the main stem of the Greenway can be accommodated by route spurs and branches, thereby promoting accessibility with a minimum of inconvenience; • The development of linkages to the communities across Marine Drive will ensure a high population draw for the Greenway and will validate and support the development of open space facilities along the route; • Limited mixed-use development will provide opportunities for live-work situations, increased public service amenities, and a more diverse visitor experience. Results: Route Option 1 is a route that stems from strict adherence to policy statements and as such, lacks creativity or exploration in route design. This is made apparent by its final score of 110.5 out of a possible 204. While the route seeks to incorporate many of the identified route features (see Appendix I), it does so in a way that follows a network of existing roads, creating a pedestrian environment that is often uncomfortable and somewhat unsafe. As well, such a route tends to disrupt the flow and accessibility of industrial and rail traffic as there are numerous crossings and conflict points. Finally, access to many key Greenway features (particularly waterfront access) is done through the implementation of street-end developments. This street-end structure, while commonly used in Greenway development, is discontinuous and often unapparent, as infrequent users of the site frequently carry past these numerous diversions. This discontinuity also endangers the feasibility of a successful habitat corridor, as many key ecological points are overlooked in favor of ease of structural design and implementation. Thesis 2000 136 Fraser River Greenway 137 138 MAP B-4a: ROUTE OPTION #1a - Kent-Based NFPA Option This route is a derivative of the basic Route Option 1, but is modified to more closely fit the suggestions for recreational development made in the North Fraser Port Authority's Land Use Plan. The NFPA, like the City of Vancouver, seeks to develop recreational opportunities within the industrial portions of the North Fraser. However, their primary mandate is the preservation of an industrial base, while concurrently promoting some rehabilitation of the foreshore environment as per FREMP policies and guidelines. The route developed with this policy bias is still largely oriented towards the linear road/rail corridor along Kent Avenue, but seeks to mitigate recreational user/industrial need conflicts. Although there are fewer water access points, the level of development to facilitate interpretive facilities, water taxis, public watercraft launch, and other activities is greater. This concentration on higher quality street-end development may act to draw more people off of the primary linear route along Kent Avenue, creating enhanced visual connections to the river and a better understanding of industrial needs. This improvement in a linear-style of route is reflected in an increased score of 115. The higher score is largely due to the decreased conflict of industrial and recreational user, thus supporting a more successful integration of the two groups. Thesis 2000 139 Fraser River Greenway 140 MAP B-4b: ROUTE OPTION #1b - Kent-Based Semi-Direct This route proved to be the most successful of the three strictly policy based routes, with a final score of 147.5. While not greatly different from Route 1a, this route improves public access to the waterfront and the utilization of vacant or idle industrial or lands under City ownership. The semi-direct nature of this site is evidenced by diversions off of Kent Avenue between Sherbrooke and Chester Street and again between Shaugnessy and Oak Street. The first diversion is possible through the utilization of currently unoccupied City lands at the east end of the Kent Asphalt Plant. This area will likely see little development within the next ten to fifteen years, and can be turned over to public use and habitat rehabilitation. The second diversion makes use of public lands in front of the Shaugnessy Industrial Park and follows the foreshore environment alongside Ocean Construction's storage facility. These diversions not only bring the public to the water and create safe immersion within the industrial shoreline, but provide more substantive opportunities for habitat restoration and ecological corridor development. Finally, increased accessibility is made possible by the reestablishment of the old Fraser River Bridge at Prince Edward, thus creating a relatively continuous open-space corridor from Marine Drive to Mitchell Island in Richmond. While keeping within policy, this route mitigates many of the constraints of the previous two, with little or no reduction in industrial capacity of the land-base. Thesis 2000 141 Fraser River Greenway MAP B-5 & B-6: ROUTE OPTION #2 - Free-Form Policy-Based Objective: This option sought to recognize all possible route options, whether they be on City-owned land, private land, or leased land in an attempt to identify a line of best fit that would effectively bring together a maximum number of features. While this style of route planning can tend to be incongruent with the goals of feasibility and efficiency, this blending of more flexible route forms with the pressures and realities of modern urban planning provides a new perspective on policy-oriented planning that may not be apparent using traditional methodologies. Coinciding with a more creative and flexible Greenway route was the desire to promote more creative redevelopment and special zoning considerations for new and revitalized structures within the site. Ideally, the result would be a route that has the largest number of features while integrating the site's industrial reality and embracing the site's redevelopment potential. Criteria: • Develop all possible routes throughout the site that do not conflict with resource dependent industry (regardless of land ownership) • Assess these routes according to the municipal, NFPA, and FREMP policy statements observed in the Option 1 design • Move the trail through and around industrial site's with a minimum conflict to both foreshore industrial needs and railway industrial needs • Look for opportunities for structural redevelopment and mixed-use zoning throughout the site on all non-foreshore sites so as not to preclude industrial waterfront uses • Provide multiple public access points to the waterfront from both the route itself and the residential community to the North of Marine Drive. • Create urban habitat corridors that correspond closely with the Greenway route to ensure movement of urban habitat through and beyond the site. • Develop a mixed network of linear pathways and open spaces for a diversity of experiences and user needs. Thesis 2000 143 Fraser River Greenway Rationale: • Greenways are recreational corridors that should link a variety of interesting and interpretive experiences together in a way that is both inviting and convenient; • Greenways should also provide opportunities for urban habitat, by establishing a matrix of open space patches and planted habitat corridors throughout the route's entirety; • A route that integrates the maximum number of Greenway features and avoids industrial needs is the most desirable for public use; • Route opportunities that exist away from roads and along natural edge conditions are more desirable and usually carry more interpretive opportunity than road-oriented routes; • Maximizing waterfront access in linear bands along the entire route has a higher capacity to fulfill the recreational needs of users and the ecological needs of habitat enhancement and rehabilitation than roadway oriented routes; • The development of linkages to the communities across Marine Drive will ensure a high population draw for the Greenway and will validate and support the development of open space facilities along the route; • Increased redevelopment on non-industrial or vacant sites that exist away from the foreshore environment will offer more facilities, services, and amenities for user of the Greenway, employees within the area, and new residents. Results: The resultant design gives the Greenway designer a greater level of freedom in choosing a route that is diverse, interesting, and appropriate given an appreciation of site context. The necessity to adhere to existing policy maintains a design that is defensible and ultimately, doable, in a construction sense. The basic route proposed in this option successfully avoids a road-oriented Greenway structure for almost fifty percent of the route's length, making this route more enjoyable for users and creating a safer working environment along Kent Avenue. As well, there are up to ten opportunities for users of the trail to immediately access the foreshore environment, versus the maximum of seven opportunities recognized in any of the Option 1 choices. This accessibility to the waterfront is not only desirable in a recreational/human sense, but may also act as a catalyst for ecological restoration. Making these areas more Thesis 2000 144 Fraser River Greenway appealing to the human user can be done in coincidence with habitat enhancement. Finally, a route that moves away from Kent Avenue reduces the number of user conflicts between the CPR line and pedestrian traffic, likely increasing safety and functionality of the rail lines and storage yards. This basic free-form structure is given design credibility by a score of 165, versus a high of 147.5 in any of the prior design solutions. While some goals are still not met, and some conflicts still exist, the overall effect of a more creative solution is clearly evident through this empirical evaluation process. Thesis 2000 145 Fraser Rjver Greenway 

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