Urban futures survey provides residents with a voice in how the region develops

Delta residents have a new way to make their voices heard on issues such as the replacement of the George Massey Tunnel through the 2012 Metro Vancouver Urban Futures Survey.

It's an online version of a historic survey that has been instrumental in shaping the way Lower Mainland municipalities have managed growth.

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This is the third chapter of the survey, which was first conducted in 1973. It helped set Vancouver on its path toward environmental protection, planning, protection of open space and a transit-oriented transportation system.

"The first Urban Futures Survey gave us as decision-makers the confidence to pursue policies that might have otherwise been dismissed as impractical, Utopian or too costly," said former Vancouver mayor and former B.C. premier Mike Harcourt.

In 1990, the survey was updated. Once again, concerns over air and water pollution topped the list.

Policy makers responded with AirCare, upgrades to wastewater treatment plants and a doubling of the region's parkland.

The 2012 survey is being conducted online through PlaceSpeak, a new online public consultation platform being developed in Vancouver, and includes all Metro municipalities, from Delta to Lions Bay.

So far, residents of Vancouver, New Westminster, the District of North Vancouver and Bowen Island have been active, while Delta and a number of others have yet to make their presence felt.

To take the survey, Metro Vancouver residents must first verify their home address by registering with PlaceSpeak.

The survey takes approximately 22 minutes to complete and can be found at www.placespeak. com/urbanfuturessurvey. com.

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