Since 2012, The Centre for Active Transportation (TCAT) has been tracking the adoption of Complete Streets policy documents across Canada on the Complete Streets for Canada map. Canadian municipalities use a variety of policy tools to adopt Complete Streets policies. TCAT has categorized these as follows.
- Active Transportation Plan – Similar to Transportation Master Plans, these plans provide specific guidance on how to build out a transportation network for walking and cycling. For the purposes of the map we also classify the following documents as an Active Transportation Plan: Regional Active Transportation Plan, Active Transportation Master Plan, Pedestrian Plan, Walking Strategy, Sidewalk Strategic Plan, Cycling Master Plan and Cycling Plan.
- By-laws & Council Resolutions – A by-law is a form of delegated legislation from the Province/Territory or National government. Due to the structure of the Canadian government a by-law is the only way municipalities are able to create legal frameworks and applies only to the municipality which created it. A council resolution is a record of decisions or direction of a municipal council. Both by-laws and resolutions can be an advantageous way for a municipality to adopt a Complete Streets policy as they are standalone documents that can provide clear direction for implementation.
- Case Study – A Complete Street case study documents the process and outcomes of Complete Streets projects, typically including before and after photos.
- Guidelines and Standards – Complete Streets Guidelines and Standards are documents that give specific guidance for how Complete Streets will be designed, implemented and constructed. For the purposes of the map we classify the following documents as Guidelines and Standards: Complete Streets Policy and Guide, Complete Streets Guidelines, Complete Streets Design and Construction Standards, and Complete Streets Policy Handbook
- Health Recommendations – Public Health agencies also make recommendations and take position statements regarding Complete Streets.
- Land Use Plan – Local or provincial governments create land use plans to regulate how land will be developed within their jurisdiction, in accordance with a set vision. Land Use Plans can also be smaller in scope focusing on a particular neighbourhood or corridor. Currently the most common way that municipalities are adopting Complete Streets policies is within the Official Plan, which is legally binding provincial legislation. For the purposes of the map we classify the following documents as a Land Use Plan: Official Plan, Municipal Development Plan, Urban Official Plan, Concept Plan and General Plan.
- Strategic Plan – A Strategic Plan provides a detailed strategy and accompanying priorities for how to achieve a municipality’s transportation vision and goals. For the purposes of the map we also classify the following documents as a Strategic Plan: Corporate Strategic Plan, Strategic Direction and Regional Municipal Planning Strategy
- Sustainability Plan – A Sustainability Plan outlines a municipality’s commitment to sustainability and typically includes specific actions for how to achieve their sustainability goals.
- Transportation Plan – One of the most prevalent ways that Canadian municipalities adopt Complete Streets policies is within a Transportation Master Plan, which provides a vision and framework for planning out a municipal or regional transportation network. For the purposes of the map we also classify Community Mobility Plans within the Transportation Plan category.
Does your municipality have a Complete Streets policy or case study you would like to share with us? To get your municipality added to the map please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. If your municipality doesn’t have a Complete Streets policy yet, check out the National Complete Streets Coalition website for guidance.