Official Community Plan Review

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What's an Official Community Plan? Why should you get involved in the OCP review that's underway? The OCP guides land use planning and sets out policies that touch citizen's lives in some way every day.

Planning for our Future

We are embarking on a review of our Official Community Plan (OCP) to help prepare the community for a resilient future, and we're involving the public as we review existing OCP policies within the context of today’s emerging issues, challenges, and trends. At key times throughout the OCP review process, you'll have the opportunity to share your opinions and ideas on the future of our community. You can learn more about this project by watching the video below and checking out the Updates section. Don't forget to click "Follow Project" to register for email updates.


What's an Official Community Plan? Why should you get involved in the OCP review that's underway? The OCP guides land use planning and sets out policies that touch citizen's lives in some way every day.

Planning for our Future

We are embarking on a review of our Official Community Plan (OCP) to help prepare the community for a resilient future, and we're involving the public as we review existing OCP policies within the context of today’s emerging issues, challenges, and trends. At key times throughout the OCP review process, you'll have the opportunity to share your opinions and ideas on the future of our community. You can learn more about this project by watching the video below and checking out the Updates section. Don't forget to click "Follow Project" to register for email updates.


  • What We've Heard to Date

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    As the second phase of the OCP Review concludes, we would like to summarize what took place.

    In phase two, we conducted meetings with stakeholder groups and local First Nations. We hosted public engagement opportunities including, an Emerging Themes Town Hall, a Priorities and Community Character Survey, Community Conversation Workbooks, and a Big Ideas Contest. In addition, we continued to engage with the OCP Advisory Committee through monthly committee meetings, and with committee members and Central Saanich’s Mayor and Council through a Land Use Workshop.

    Throughout spring 2021, we met with stakeholder groups, as well as with W̱JOȽEȽP (Tsartlip) Chief and Council and the W̱SÁNEĆ Leadership Council. We hosted an Emerging Themes Town Hall open to all community members; a recording of the Town Hall is available on this project site. The Priorities and Community Character Survey was available as were Community Workbooks for small groups to use. The OCP Advisory Committee and Central Saanich’s Mayor and Council participated in a workshop on emerging key topics related to land use.

    Through these conversations and survey, we heard about community members’ top priorities for Central Saanich today and in the future.

    As shown in Figure 1, growth management, agriculture and food security, environmental protection, and parks, trails and recreation access are high priority topics.

    When community members think about priorities for today, they lean more towards local business and economic development, and accessing nature and recreation.

    When they think about priorities for the future, they lean more towards agriculture and food security, supporting an aging population, and climate and disaster resilience.

    Community members hoped for Central Saanich to maintain its rural and small-town character, and especially to retain the quiet and safe nature of the community. They hoped to maintain a balance between agricultural surroundings, compact village life, and the community’s distinction from nearby urban areas. Many hoped Central Saanich would stay lower density, experience a reasonable or lower level of population growth, and maintain its semi-rural infrastructure. Similarly, community members are concerned about balancing new development with Central Saanich’s rural, agricultural community roots. Many are concerned increasing densification will change the sense of community, architectural design, and overall rural and small-town community character. On the other hand, there is concern the high cultural value placed on agriculture and farming has dominated the culture of the peninsula, with a lack of focus and respect for Indigenous heritage and culture. There were suggestions to increase the awareness of Indigenous history and presence in the community, especially through design elements, cultural artifacts like totem poles, educational signage, and naming.

    The input from the community was extensive and invaluable. You can read a detailed summary in the OCP Review What We Heard report.

    The summary represents a variety of interests and perspectives from across Central Saanich. At the end of each phase of the project, we will continue to update this document with a summary of what we have heard to date.

  • Summer 2021 update

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    That's a wrap on Phase 2! This spring, the first round of public engagement ended, and since that time the project team has been analyzing the extensive input received. Many themes emerged and a What We Heard report is being finalized; it will be shared with Council and the public in August.

    Phase 3 of the project is now getting started, and public engagement is critical. This phase includes using what we've heard and what various projections and needs (demographics, climate, housing, transportation, etc) are demonstrating, and sharing draft policies with the public for feedback.

    Engagement opportunities will soon be published.

    The OCP Advisory Committee continues monthly meetings, which are broadcast on the District's YouTube channel.

    • July 28, 4 pm, Topic : Parks and Recreation
    • August 25, 4 pm, Topic: Economic Development
  • Community Conversation Toolkit

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    To plan for the future of Central Saanich together, we need to discuss some complex issues, involve people from across the District, and consider many different viewpoints.

    This Community Conversation Workbook will help you participate in these important conversations in a more comfortable setting that suits your schedule.

    We invite you to host a discussion with your bubble (or a wider group online) Meet outside or hop on a video call with your family, friends, co-workers, classmates, and neighbours (in accordance with public health orders). Or, complete the Workbook on your own.

    The thoughts and ideas that you and your group share with us through the Community Conversation Workbooks will help us learn more about the community’s needs and aspirations. They will help us to ensure the OCP:

    • reflects current values and priorities;
    • addresses current and trending issues; and
    • prepares the community for challenges and opportunities that lie ahead

    This Workbook will help you and those gathered with you discuss the topics that are most important to you:

    • Agriculture and food security
    • Growth management, housing and affordability
    • Jobs and economic development
    • Parks, recreation and open space
    • Environmental protection and climate action
    • Transportation and mobility

    Feel like providing higher-level input at this stage?

    Complete the Our Community Map and Our Future activities on pages 5 and 6.

    Feel like diving into one or two key topics?

    Complete the topic-based activities starting on page 7.

    If you’d like to do it all, please do!

  • Register for the virtual OCP Town Hall

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    The OCP Town Hall will feature a panel of experts discussing key topics, such as agriculture, housing, climate action and economic development, and staff and the consultants will then be available for questions and discussion.


    Mar 25, 2021 6-8 pm

    Please click here to register for the webinar.

  • We want your BIG ideas!

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    What would make Central Saanich better now and in the future? No idea is too big or silly.

    Do you find yourself always passing the same place in Central Saanich and thinking, “It would be so great if that spot was…”? Maybe you want to see more local activities?

    Our OCP review is just beginning and we need to hear from you! Help define what we care about as a community and how we want to grow and evolve.

    This is the time to share your big ideas.

    Try thinking about the opportunities you see for Central Saanich in the following areas:

    1. Maintaining and nurturing Central Saanich's unique community character
    2. Agriculture
    3. Economic development
    4. Environment and climate action
    5. Transportation
    6. Parks and trails
    7. Infrastructure
    8. Arts, culture, and heritage
    9. Growth, housing, and development
    10. Community Services


    Why? These ideas will help us identify themes, values and priorities, which will ensure the OCP conversations to come are meaningful and focused on key topics.

    In March we will fully launch the next phase of the OCP review. You will have the opportunity to weigh in on the strengths and weaknesses of the current OCP through a variety of fun and engaging activities.

    Jump over to the BIG IDEAS tab and post your ideas!

  • OCP Citizen Advisory Committee Meeting Schedule

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    The OCP Advisory Committee meets monthly to explore different themes. Their feedback will provide the best outcome possible for the community and help bring diverse perspectives to the table.

    The group is made up of a diverse range of community members representing various stakeholders, interest groups and the community at large.

    This January theme is: VISION, RURAL CHARACTER & UPCOMING ENGAGEMENT. Interested community members are welcome to view a live stream of the meeting January 27 at 4:00pm.

    For future dates, please see "Key Dates".

  • Call for volunteers!

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    1. Call for Volunteers: OCP Advisory Committee – Apply by October 5, 2020

    The District is seeking between 5 to 11 volunteers for the OCP Advisory Committee for a maximum term of two years.

    Central Saanich is filled with people and organizations who care deeply about this place and the people who live here. If you or your organization would like to share your ideas, help others participate, and ensure we are moving forward together, we want to hear from you.

    We are seeking members that would be actively engaged in the process and represent various stakeholders, interest groups and the community at large with an interest or knowledge in any of the following areas: Environmental (sustainability, climate action, ecosystems) / Economic (commercial, industrial, other)/ Social & Cultural Interest (heritage, arts & culture, youth & families) / Community Services (volunteer associations, church groups, service providers) / Land Use & Development (real estate, planning and design, parks) / Agriculture and Rural Charter (farming, food security, rural values) / Transportation (public transit, trails, road network)/ Regional Interest (Emergency preparedness, major infrastructure, regional services) / First Nations / Housing (affordable, accessibility, special needs).

    If you’re interested, please review the Terms of Reference for the OCP Advisory Committee and the project charter.

    To apply

    Applications can be submitted to the Corporate Officer prior to 4:30 p.m. on Monday, October 5, 2020. Please drop off your application in the DropBox outside Municipal Hall, at 1903 Mount Newton Cross Road, or scan and email to municipalhall@csaanich.ca.

    Download Application Form

    View Terms of Reference