Lethbridge City Council last week voted 7-2 on third reading to approve the Municipal Development Plan (MDP), Bylaw 6265, setting the City's vision for sustainable growth in the present and future.
The MDP has goals of improving quality of life, addressing the changing needs of our City and fostering a prosperous economy, as well as a synchronization with corporate strategies to lay groundwork for the next Council work plan.
"The purpose of this new Municipal Development Plan is to provide relevant city-wide strategic policy guidance as we continue to grow and build on the surpassed milestone of the 100,000 population mark," says Maureen Gaehring, General Manager of Planning and Design.
In alignment with the requirements of the Municipal Government Act, the MDP was drafted during the course of two years and builds on multiple other studies, strategies and plans completed by administration over the past decade. The MDP carries forward the vision statement and outcomes established in the existing Integrated Community Sustainability Plan/MDP adopted in 2010, while making improvements through the addition of more detailed and measurable policy directions and a more robust framework for implementation and performance measurement.
This MDP project began in January 2019 with a Council workshop hosted to discuss the scope and expectations in reviewing the ICSP/MDP. Council directed administration to review and update the existing plan rather than writing an entirely new one, while focusing on certain areas for improvement, such as the economy and relationships.
During the project, Council was updated periodically on the project timeline and milestones, document structure and components, policy topics and public engagement. Additionally, Council carried out engagement sessions targeting stakeholder groups. A link to the document and details regarding how to participate in the public hearing process were emailed directly to more than 125 stakeholder organizations and partners, including area school divisions, Lethbridge County and surrounding First Nations.
The MDP, Bylaw 6265, received first reading on February 9, 2021, and a Public Hearing was held on March 29 to April 1, 2021. On May 18, the MDP received Second Reading and various amendments were approved by City Council based on the feedback received during the March 29 to April 1 Public Hearing.
More information on the MDP is here. The full MDP can be found here.