Nanaimo council passed its strategic plan to identify the priorities which will guide the city into the future.
But like the guy in the double-rainbow Youtube video asked, what does it mean?
The plan sets out four pillars of sustainability: social equity, environmental responsibility, economic health and cultural vitality.
Albeit vague, the 20-page plan does get slightly more specific by identifying more immediate goals: waterfront enhancement, water, transportation and mobility, asset management, community building partnerships and responsibility through local government.
Sounds strangely familiar – isn’t this already the city’s focus?
The waterfront is known as the jewel of downtown Nanaimo and council is in the midst of building new infrastructure to secure residents’ water needs.
Without defined goals, ‘waterfront enhancement’ could mean anything from extending the Harbourfront walkway to a multi-highrise development.
The plan took months of development and consultation with the public through workshops, surveys and blog comments, at a cost of $121,000. It gives council direction from the public and a mandate to implement projects that align with the plan.
What it also does is bring city staff and councillors onside with shared goals and priorities, often lacking in the past as the two groups butted heads on policy decisions.
But further than that, learning what the plan actually means for the citizens of Nanaimo must wait until budget season, when money earmarked for projects by city council is wrapped around the community-driven mandate.
Then residents will know whether the plan is a good one for Nanaimo.