Sustainability is at the forefront of the Town’s philosophy, informing how the Town maintains its infrastructure and how it provides services to the community.
What is Sustainability?
There are three pillars of sustainability, these include:
- Environmental Sustainability: natural capital assets and environmental protection;
- Social Sustainability: social justice and equity; and
- Economic Sustainability: economic stability and efficiency.
These three pillars have been incorporated into the Town of Gibsons’ Official Community Plan.
Sustainable Development and Smart Growth
Sustainable Development, as coined by the Brundtland Report, is commonly defined as: Development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.
“Smart Growth” combines a number of land use and development principles to ensure that growth is fiscally, environmentally and socially responsible and recognizes the connections between development and quality of life.
Smart Growth is a key concept in the Town of Gibsons Official Community Plan, which is named the Smart Plan.
Smart Growth aims to promote the linkages between the three pillars of sustainability and attempts to find a balance between the three. There are a number of common principles to Smart Growth that are local in nature, and can be applied to Gibsons, including:
- creating a range of housing opportunities and choices
- creating walkable neighbourhoods
- encouraging community and stakeholder collaboration
- fostering distinctive, attractive places with a strong sense of place
- making development decisions predictable, fair and cost-effective
- mixing land uses
- preserving open space, farmland, and critical environmental areas
- providing a variety of transportation choices
- strengthening and directing development towards existing communities
- taking advantage of compact building design
A Regional Approach for the Sunshine Coast
In 2011, the Town of Gibsons partnered with the SCRD and District of Sechelt to develop a regional sustainability plan for the Sunshine Coast. Named We Envision One Coast: Together in Nature, Culture and Community, the plan took stock of the Coast’s situation, developed a vision of what we aspired to be in a sustainable future, and proposed a concrete set of strategic directions, targets and actions to navigating towards our Vision.