Squamish Employment Space Policy Design and Innovation - BC-647

Genre de projet: Non-recherche
Discipline(s) souhaitée: Architecture et design, Sciences sociales et humaines, Études urbaines
Entreprise: District of Squamish
Durée du projet: 4 to 6 months
Preferred start date: As soon as possible.
Langue exigée: English
Emplacement(s): Squamish, BC, Canada; Canada
Nombre de postes: 1
Niveau de scolarité désiré: CollègeÉtudes de premier cycle/baccalauréatMaîtriseDoctoratRecherche postdoctorale
Rechercher dans les réseaux internationaux de Mitacs - cochez cette case si vous souhaitez recevoir des profils de chercheurs basés à l’extérieur du Canada: 
No

Au sujet de l’entreprise: 

The District of Squamish is located in the southwest corner of British Columbia. It sits in a spectacular natural setting at the north end of Howe Sound where rugged landscapes and stunning vistas come together to create a unique and memorable location.

Veuillez décrire le projet.: 

Employment land and space is a strategic area of policy development for the District of Squamish, and a key focus of our Economic Action Plan. As the population grows in the District, we're conducting policy reviews and analyses to understand the employment space needs of our local sectors, the current capacity for different types of space, and future demand. With these insights, we're developing data-driven economic models, tools, and resources to help ensure we have an appropriate supply of land and space to support future economic growth. Ensuring an increased supply of land and marine-based employment space is a strategic priority for the District of Squamish. Adequate space means that local businesses can expand and new firms can locate in Squamish, translating into more jobs for our resident workforce.

Through zoning and policy, the District can significantly influence the development of employment space in new developments. The District seeks to optimize those new employment spaces to maximize local employment, wage, and employee density, economic diversity, neighborhood and community vibrancy, and quality of life for residents, including the local workforce. This project seeks to take a variety of existing District of Squamish research and policy assets that have been produced to date, apply a lens of Community Planning best practices relevant to the District of Squamish, and produce an action-oriented report, including a set of guiding principles that will help District staff apply the insights toward optimal future employment space planning going forward. Note that this project will use existing available data and secondary research, it is not a new research project.

This project seeks to:

1) Enable knowledge transfer across District of Squamish staff, by synthesizing, digesting, and applying the various employment space research initiatives the District has conducted to date, creating a concise and digestible product or series of products to improve knowledge transfer across the District.

2) Apply research and best practices to optimize ongoing decision-making by producing a set of concrete, actionable employment land and space guidelines that District staff can use in day-to-day work and special projects.

3) Recommend improvements to the District’s employment space planning and policy, based on in-house research, literature review, and Community Planning best practices from other communities in British Columbia.

The project deliverables will include:

1) Development of a highly visual product that summarizes the District’s research findings uncovered to date, to support knowledge transfer across the organization. Part of the project will seek to determine the best format for this “product” to fit the target audience (District staff in Community Planning, Building, Engineering, and Economic Development.). The end product could be in the form of a short report, an infographic, a series of micro-blog articles, or a different format proposed by the student, based on interviews with users and tools that are available to the District.

Content should include:

a) A concise summary of the District’s employment space research to date.

b) Recommendations arising from the research, including policy and process recommendations, considering District of Squamish existing Bylaws, Objectives, Plans, and Policies, and Community Planning best practices.

2) Guiding principles for staff to consider for future employment space development in Squamish, including real-life case study examples to demonstrate the principles in action. (For example, specific examples of relevant projects in the Lower Mainland and other regions of British Columbia, as well as other jurisdictions, accounting for differences in regulatory considerations).

Guiding principles should support decision-making in new developments to optimize employment space. The Guiding Principles should consider:

a) In which neighborhoods should various types of employment space/s be situated, such as retail, office, light industrial, and mixed-use zones? How much of these forms of employment space would be optimal in these areas?

b) What target amount, in meters squared, of employment space of various forms is required over time, and at what rate should employment space be developed to keep pace with demand?

c) Which physical characteristics related to zoning make these employment spaces the most useful and productive for businesses? (For example, characteristics may include gross floor area, building height, access, width, depth, parking, loading bays, etc.)

d) Consideration of tradeoffs in employment space design. What are the most important characteristics to focus on in order to achieve objectives of strong local employment and high wage density?

3) Presentation to District staff in Planning, Building, Engineering, and Economic Development as part of an optional learning session, and depending on Council meeting availability, potentially a public-facing presentation to District of Squamish Council elected officials.

Expertise ou compétences exigées: 

This project seeks a student with knowledge, education, and/or experience in Community Planning/Urban Planning, and ideally in a municipal context. Ideally, the student candidate will have some education from an urban planning degree program.

 

The project team is open to considering candidates at all levels of education, including undergraduate, Master’s, PhD students, as well as College students.

 

The internship will be remote, so students across Canada are encouraged to apply.