UBC Theses and Dissertations

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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Control and planning : a distinction with a difference, a case study of the central Okanagan White, Richard Henry


This thesis studies the decisions of the Kelowna, B.C. City Council to trace the development of land use control and planning in the central Okanagan. Initially a review of planning literature is conducted which supports the distinction between land use control and land use planning. For the purpose of this thesis, "land use control" is defined as reactive municipal by-laws or resolutions which restrict development on a program or project basis, and "land use planning" is defined as a municipal policy process which is goal oriented guiding the long term development of the community. While early Canadian planning theorists and practitioners advocated land use controls only as part of an overall planning process, a review of planning history shows that Canadian municipalities have often favoured land use controls to the exclusion of land use planning initiatives. Similarly, the case study shows that Kelowna Council adopted land use control by-laws eschewing a committment to land use planning. The thesis shows that, although the literature provides no consensus on the underlying political or economic rationale, it contends that the local political process dominates land control and planning. The case study supports this contention and provides evidence to show that land use controls were politically popular while land use planning was not. The study argues that the local political process does not support goals oriented, policy based planning because it limits political power and flexibility while requiring political commitment.

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