UBC Graduate Research

Neighbourhoods in Action: Exploring Challenges and Opportunities for Managing Vancouver's Neighbourhood Greenways Fernandez, Jose Maria Garcia


Greenways are linear open space corridors in the built or natural environment that not only contribute to the preservation of biodiversity, but also are an innovative way to engage communities in preserving and connecting them, through their use, to nature. Since 1995, the City of Vancouver has had the Vancouver Greenway Program. As part of this Program, the Neighbourhood Greenway Program promotes the engagement of communities in the planning and implementation of greenways. However, this initiative has many opportunities to strengthen, expand, and improve if it evolves beyond some of the current challenges that exist for both the City and community-based groups in creating and maintaining greenways. This preliminary research explores these challenges and identifies opportunities to improve the community-led initiative. Factors such as partnerships, public involvement and commitment, organizational structure, funding, communication and advertising, are among the problems identified by the community-led groups that participated in this research. The findings are drawn from reviewing literature on experiences elsewhere and from interviews conducted with nine volunteers from four neighborhood greenway projects and one staff member from the City of Vancouver, that have been used to illustrate the issues surrounding greenway implementation. Finally, recommendations to build on this preliminary analysis by the participants collaborating on refining the assessment and improving the existing program framework are made to facilitate the future implementation of Neighbourhood Greenways in Vancouver

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