Archive for November, 2013

Lecture: Australian planners compare Vancouver and Brisbane – Nov 21


Thursday, November 21, 7 pm Goldcorp Centre for the Arts (at SFU Woodwards) 149 West Hastings Street, Vancouver Details

Admission is free, but we require reservations. Reserve

Two of our favourite Australian planners and urbanists are back in town, with new insights and updates. Greg Vann is one of Brisbane’s best known and respected planners, a co-author of the Next Generation Planning Handbook, and former chair of the State’s Transit Oriented Development Taskforce. Warren Rowe recently stepped down after 18 years as Director of Planning, Environment and Transport at the Gold Coast, Queensland’s second biggest city, where he was instrumental in many award-winning projects, most notably the City’s first light rail line. He comes to Vancouver fresh from presenting and running a master class at a TOD conference in Malaysia.

Both come from the Brisbane region in Queensland — an area roughly the population, age and growth rate of Metro Vancouver. So how are they dealing with pressures of growth and the realities of climate change? What new urban forms are working, or not? In particular, what have been the lessons learned from the massive investments in highway infrastructure? Their tolled tunnels have failed to come anywhere close to their predicted traffic. On the other hand, Gold Coast City is currently constructing a light-rail line prior to the Commonwealth Games that promises to transform this car-centric community. You’ll get the latest news.

Our Commonwealth cousins have more to compare and contrast with us, no doubt contributing a few observations about the Vancouver they know well from many previous visits. Learn about our place and their place, with a few lessons from other places along the way.

Organized by SFU Continuing Studies (City Program). Supported by Metro Vancouver.


November 12, 2013 at 9:51 am Leave a comment

Warren Gill Lecture: Jennifer Keesmaat, Toronto planner – Dec 6




Jennifer Keesmaat, Chief Planner of the City of Toronto


Own Your City

Friday, December 6, 2013, 7 pm

Djavad Mowafaghian Cinema, Goldcorp Centre for the Arts, SFU at Woodwards, 149 West Hastings, Vancouver

Admission is free, but seating is limited, so we require reservations. Register here.


Political engagement in cities is at an all-time low, but the passionate public discourse about visions for the places we live is louder than ever. What disconnect is hindering these conversations from translating ideas into reality? Jennifer Keesmaat, chief planner for the City of Toronto, will speak about her experiences shifting public discourse through capacity building, and the underlying factors that lead to the tipping point required to achieve a lasting impact.

Belief, understanding, and engagement must come together to empower communities to drive forward positive change. The City of Toronto’s Planning Division is embarking on a new trajectory aimed at fostering these underlying factors by connecting with its residents at a deeper, more substantive level.

Jennifer challenges each of us to Own Your City, taking personal action to increase the quality of life within the communities we call home.

See also: Lecture details / Jennifer Keesmaat bio


About the Warren Gill Lecture

Dr. Warren Gill was passionately engaged in the cities and neighbourhoods in which he lived and worked. As a member of the senior administration at SFU, he was instrumental in the development of its downtown campus; as an urban geography professor, he inspired many students. Never satisfied with the status quo, Warren worked constantly to make life in the city more interesting and more inclusive. The intent of this lecture series in his honour is to continue his questioning, raise new ideas and invoke new ways of thinking about life in the urban context.


Sponsored by: UniverCity, mccarthy tetrault, Polygon, AECOM, SFU Vancouver

November 10, 2013 at 11:31 am Leave a comment