Vancouver residents long for a greater sense of connectedness with their neighbours, and in how they engage and interact with City Hall.
The mandate of the Engaged City Task Force is to increase neighbourhood engagement, and improve upon the many ways the City connects with Vancouver residents.
The task force will focus on the following priority issues:
January 21, 2016 — Throughout 2015, City staff were busy implementing the recommendations of the Engaged City Task Force. Below is a list of some of the accomplishments.
This was the second year for Pop-Up City Hall — our mobile outreach unit. Over the course of the year, Pop-Up had 52 site visits and interacted with over 9,000 people.
This was also the second year that DOV was hosted. This annual event invites residents to go behind the scenes of Vancouver's iconic civic buildings.
In 2015, 18 buildings participated in the program. There were 180 volunteers, nearly 200 staff, and over 14,400 visits, a 68% increase over 2014 visitor numbers! In 2016, City Hall was opened a day earlier to give a preview to school groups and language schools. The event was a success because of the energy of all of our committed volunteers and partners.
At the end of 2015, Talk Vancouver, our online consultation platform had 5,860 members, up from 3,106 the year before. Forty-nine surveys were conducted in 2015, with overall submissions reaching 37,388, up from 18,400 submissions from 45 surveys in 2014.
Over 48 new site signs were installed over the last four months using our new site sign template. These signs are in colour and provide plan language information with clear process details.
Since October 2013, in response to a Task Force Quick Start Recommendation, 3-1-1 CSR agents actively monitor and respond to requests through the City of Vancouver Twitter and Facebook accounts. In 2015, 3-1-1 responded to 3,828 requests.
Dec 23, 2014 – Throughout 2014, City staff were busy implementing the recommendations of the Engaged City Task Force. Below is a peak at some of the accomplishments.
Pop-Up City Hall
During Pop-Up City Hall’s pilot period, 12 locations around the City, primarily in South and East Vancouver were visited from May to July resulting in over 1,500 unique interactions with residents.
The initiative was so effective that is was then used for Elections and Budget outreach. In total there were 52 Pop-Ups in 2014, enabling the City to directly engage more than 8,000 individuals.
Doors Open Vancouver
On October 4, 2014 the City of Vancouver hosted the inaugural Doors Open Vancouver. Doors Open was a one-day event that allowed residents to get a behind-the-scenes look at over 20 popular and iconic Vancouver buildings. Over 8,500 people participated in the first ever Doors Open Vancouver with some venues having line-ups throughout the day.
The City’s Block Party program provides residents with a step-by-step guide to organizing a block party as well as making useful templates available for download, such as posters and invitations.
The target set for 2014 was to have 150 block party applications and the City surpassed this goal with 161 applications – this was a nearly 30% increase from 2013 which saw 125 applications submitted.
In an effort to provide more clarity around development proposals, a new site sign and notification card template was created that provides detailed images as well as plain-language explanation of development proposals. The new approach won Toronto activist Dave Meslin’s 2014 Dazzling Notice Award.
In an effort to provide more digital opportunities for engagement, as a mirror to in-person options, the Talk Vancouver panel was launched in September 2013. Since its inception more than 3,500 Vancouver residents and businesses have joined the panel, representing a diversity of perspectives across the city. The Talk Vancouver platform has helped to significantly increase response rates and the reach of City consultation projects.
Sept 5, 2014 – Go behind-the-scenes of Vancouver’s civic, cultural, and historic facilities on Saturday, October 4 at Vancouver’s first Doors Open event. This free, family-friendly event is another quick start action from the Engaged City Task Force.
June 25, 2014 – The City is now sharing information about cultural spaces, the places where people express themselves through art and culture.
May 8, 2014 – The City launches Pop-Up City Hall, a pilot project that will bring select City Hall services to neighbourhoods, with a focus on south Vancouver. Pop-Up City Hall is one of the Engage City Task Force's quick-start recommendations. From now until the end of June, Pop-Up City Hall will visit eleven locations. Visitors will be able to register to vote, pick up blue boxes, learn how to access our many services online, and much more.
April 2, 2014 – The Engaged City Task Force was thanked by Council today for their contributions to a ground-breaking final report. The report was officially received unanimously by Council. Staff have been requested to report back with recommendations for implementation.
March 31, 2014 – On Wednesday, April 2, the final report will go to Council.
This report outlines 19 priority actions that Vancouver City Hall can undertake to make Vancouver an engaged city, including:
The report also includes six recommended ideas for community action that residents can do to contribute to making Vancouver a more engaged city.
Read the final report (5 MB)
March 24, 2014 – To help develop pilot programs for three Engaged City quick start recommendations, staff have created a short questionnaire to get your feedback. Share your thoughts and help shape Mobile City Hall, City Hall 101, and Block Party Days. This questionnaire will be open until midnight on April 14 and should take approximately 10 minutes.
January 30, 2014 – The task force released its final report today.
November 2013 – 3-1-1 begins a pilot project of limited service on Twitter from Monday to Friday, as outlined in the Engaged City Quick Starts guide.
During the pilot period, 3-1-1 aims to understand the workload required for staff to provide Twitter service, as well as identify training needs, collaboration processes, and appropriate service levels to ensure citizen needs are met within our means. 3-1-1 will be continually evaluating its work during the pilot.
November 2013 – Thank you for your feedback! The Engaged City Task Force is drawing on stakeholder conversations, public feedback, and best practices to create their final report. These recommendations will go to Council in early 2014.
September 11, 2013 – As part of the Engaged City Task Force's quick start recommendations, we invite you to be a part of Talk Vancouver, an online space for civic participation. Help us build a better Vancouver by becoming a member of the City's online community of trusted, local advisors. We will keep you connected to the latest City initiatives and invite you to participate and voice your ideas.
We have launched this online community panel to enable citizens to engage regularly with the City and provide feedback on civic issues. Using interactive survey and dialogue tools to collect feedback, this panel – with membership in the thousands – will provide a new avenue for citizen input that builds on existing structures for engagement. The online panel will allow for more in-depth feedback and the ability to ensure that responses are demographically reflective of Vancouver.
June 20, 2013 – With only 35% of eligible voters casting a ballot in the 2011 municipal election, how do we increase low voter turnout in Vancouver? By encouraging early voter registration! It makes you much more likely to vote in the 2014 election.
To promote registration, The Task Force urged the City to make signing up simple and easy. Today, our website includes a permanent link to the Elections BC Online Voter Registration website.
Register to vote
June 19, 2013 – A key recommendation in the Task Force Quick Starts Report is to improve communication around property development. The City is introducing a clean, engaging design for rezoning and development signage that features:
The questionnaire closed on July 26, 2013.
The first site with the new signage is 720 – 730 East Hastings, where Vancouver Public Library (VPL) and YWCA Metro Vancouver seek rezoning for a proposed six-storey mixed use building.
May 24, 2013 – How do we become more connected to our neighbours and our communities? Double voter turnout in Vancouver’s next municipal election? Increase more positive and meaningful civic engagement in Vancouver?
The Mayor’s Engaged City Task Force wants to hear your ideas – big and small – to help answer these questions and to improve the City’s role in creating a more engaged community. Your ideas and comments will inform the final report and set of recommendations that the Task Force is preparing this summer, to be presented to Council.
The questionnaire closed on September 9, 2013. Thank you for your interest.
May 22, 2013 – The Engaged City Task Force released their first report that contains a set of 16 recommendations that the City can take to enhance public consultation, improve the effectiveness of civic communications, and foster collaboration and connection within neighbourhoods. These quick starts are recommendations that the taskforce believes could be accomplished by the City within a six-month time frame.
December 5, 2012 – The Mayor announces the 22 citizens who will serve on the Engaged City Task Force. The members were selected from 117 applicants.
October 3, 2012 – Vancouver City Council passed a motion to establish the Mayor's Engaged City Task Force, with the mandate to increase neighbourhood engagement and improve upon the many ways the City connects with Vancouver residents.
The task force begins work in December 2012, and will report to City Council in June 2013.
Made up of a diverse group of citizens from all corners of Vancouver, the task force will examine innovative best practices for civic engagement, and work to improve the ways the City engages and communicates with citizens.
The Task Force will be supported by staff from the offices of:
Questions for the Engaged City Task Force?
Find out all the ways that you can join the conversation about the issues that matter the most to you.