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britannia beach
community visioning charrette


To view the final report produced in November 2003
click here



Britannia Beach Community Design Charrette
Project Description

In the fall of 2002, The University of British Columbia held two workshops at the Britannia Beach Community Centre for the purpose of engaging all stakeholders at the site in establishing goals and design guidelines for the Canadian Environmental Mining Research Centre (CEMR) to be built by UBC at Britannia Beach. These events were part of a process called a "Charrette" which culminates in a four to five day intensive design workshop that allows the wider community to work with a team of architects to develop detailed designs of how project such as CEMR would be integrated into the existing and future elements of the community.

A total of 70 people were invited to the workshops from over 15 different organizations. During the two events, 30 site goals and objectives were developed with the agreement of all participants (about 50 participants at the first workshop and 35 at the second). A series of design guidelines were evolved from this list of goals and objectives presented under four categories: Green Infrastructure, Energy Efficiency and Resource Conservation, Economic Development, and Community Infrastructure. This document is available for viewing (Design Brief).

In addition to the UBC-CEMR Centre project, there are several other initiatives also under consideration for Britannia by the following organizations:

  • The BC Museum of Mining – museum operations and assessment of potential for future expansion/redevelopment.
  • Britannia Bay Properties Ltd. – community development opportunities.
  • BC Ministry of Highways – Highway 99 Expansion Project
  • BC Ministry of Water, Land and Air Protection / Ministry of Sustainable Resource Management – Britannia Site Rehabilitation Project
  • Natural Resources Canada – Britannia Centre for Mining Innovation and Heritage Park.

Because of the success of the UBC-CERM3 initiative, talks were held with representatives from each of these groups to examine ways to expand the final design workshop to include the entire site development. All parties have agreed to participate in the charrette that will address these larger planning issues and the Museum of Mining has agreed to host the event. The BC Ministry of Sustainable Resource Management has indicated a desire to participate because of a number of possible advantages in integrating their Water Treatment Plant to the overall site project development plans.

The following is a description of the Charrette Process and the groups who will be involved. It will be necessary to rerun the two mini-workshops held last fall in order to include design goals and design guidelines for the broader site issues.

Combined Stakeholder Workshops #1 and #2

Workshop 1: goals and objectives overview

(3 hours) Date: Thursday, September 4th 2003.

Workshop 2: final goals and objectives and draft design brief (3 hours) Date: Thursday, September 18th 2003.

This stage will involve past participants from the fall 2002 workshops with a wider group of stakeholder constituents interested in the CEMR Centre, the NRCan proposal, the BC Museum of Mining, the Water Treatment Plant, the development of commercial property and other future development potential at Britannia Beach.

The purpose of the workshop is to integrate existing project objectives with those of the wider group, with a view to defining a comprehensive set of Goals and Objectives and a Design Brief for the entire site, given this much larger scope.

Charrette Event
The charrette will use the targets in the Design Brief to develop a vision for the community plan.

Design Charrette
(full day sessions, with a later start and end time on the 22nd)
October 15th-16th 2003, and
October 22nd–23rd 2003.

The charrette will commence with a ‘kick-off’ briefing session involving the broader group of participants. Stakeholders and stakeholder groups will be given time to provide short overviews of the issue as they are seen from their perspectives.

Each team will present their works-in-progress to the stakeholders at least once during the four days. This presentation will allow the groups to address issues of concern, to validate current directions, and/or to ask questions of each other, the sponsors, and the stakeholders.

The charrette will conclude with a presentation to a wide audience of interested citizens and stakeholders. As representatives from stakeholder groups in addition to others with an interest in the site will be invited to the final presentation, this event will be an important venue to discuss issues of implementation, future challenges and next steps.

Charrette Team
The charrette will consist of one design team representing the stakeholder groups. An opportunity will be given to the NRCan architectural group to put forward their conceptual proposal for NRCan's Britannia Beach Centre for Mining Innovation which will form the centerpiece of the site development. All proponents of the various site projects can enter into a common dialog to evolve a final common site plan that fits into the overall design guidelines.

Charrette Coordination
Primary coordination, facilitation and documentation of the charrette will be undertaken by Patrick Condon’s team at the UBC James Taylor Chair in Landscape and Liveable Environments at the University of British Columbia, on behalf of Britannia Bay Properties Ltd., BC Museum of Mining, Ministry of Sustainable Resource Management, NRCan, Squamish Lillooet Regional Planning District, and CERM3. Fundraising and additional strategic management will be provided by John Meech, Director of CERM3 at UBC.