What will a destination mobility hub look and feel like? How will transportation be integrated in a destination for residents and visitors? Will scenic views be maintained? Who can provide input? These are some of the questions an ARP and its engagement process addresses. An ARP is a statutory plan adopted as a bylaw by Banff Town Council. The document must align with the Banff Community Plan and Banff National Park of Canada Management Plan (2022).
This policy document guides the redevelopment of existing, developed, or disturbed areas which are in need of rehabilitation. It is informed by extensive research, community input and municipal plans to establish a shared vision for revitalization of this area.
An ARP is a policy document that sets a vision and a framework for future land use amendment and subsequent site specific development proposals: in the short-term, medium term, and long-term.
Terms of Reference
On February 19th, 2019, council endorsed a Terms of Reference for the Railway Lands Area Redevelopment Plan that established the boundary of planning area and a summary of what council expected to be addressed in the ARP. It also allowed the applicant, Liricon, to commence work on plan. There are two phases of planning that will require public engagement: the concept stage, which informs the draft ARP, and the submission of the draft ARP, which is based on proven concepts.
Engagement Phase 3: Additional community engagement
In April, 2023, Liricon decided to undertake additional community engagement given the recent release of the Banff National Park of Canada Management Plan 2022, the findings and recommendations of the Expert Advisory Panel on Moving People Sustainably in the Banff Bow Valley, and Lead Tourism for Good: 10-Year Vision For Tourism in Banff and Lake Louise. Liricon is committed to the Railway Lands ARP as a transformative multi-modal mobility hub which supports and aligns with these important guiding plans.
Here are a few activities planned for 2023:
- Publishing the draft ARP at banffecotransithub.com
- Informational updates in local newspapers
- Two online surveys
- Reporting back to the community
Engagement Phase 2: Submitting the ARP
In 2021 and 2022, Liricon was active in the community so residents could learn more and share their input on the ARP. The purpose of this engagement was to hear local input and respond to questions so they could refine the final ARP submitted to the Town of Banff.
Here are just a few activities that took place in 2021 – 2022:
- Two community-wide Open House Information Sessions with participation of subject matter experts informing the ARP – December 2021
- Online survey
- Ongoing engagement with Town of Banff administration and their discussions with the Parks Canada Filed Unit
- Commencement of Indigenous consultation (in conjunction with Town of Banff)
This second stage of public engagement has provided Liricon an opportunity to listen and further understand feedback and questions from the community.
Engagement Phase 1: Conceptual Stage
To inform the draft ARP, Liricon initiated the first phase of its community engagement plan focused on Banff residents in 2019. Through in-person and digital engagement, community members were invited to have conversations about the project, ask questions and were encouraged to provide feedback on the key topics that will be considered as part of the ARP. An online survey was used to complement the in-person public engagement. A What We Heard Report summarizing this input was published.
Maturation of the ARP based on public engagement and research
Thank you to everyone that helped shape the current draft ARP for Banff Railway Lands in the first phase of community engagement. Liricon aimed to provide many different opportunities and ways to provide feedback throughout the engagement, including in-person and digital opportunities, and this input was very valuable.