The ANC Approach

Together, we are working in communities across Canada to build active citizenship and active streets using the ANC participatory planning approach.

Each community has a unique, citizen-driven work plan developed in collaboration with diverse groups, but there are some common elements to the ANC participatory planning approach. Our approach relies on the following common elements:

Blending expert & local knowledge

The ANC model rests on the strength of partnerships with organizations that have connections to the grassroots. By bringing together informal residents’ groups with built environment professionals, we can develop a more holistic understanding of public space and help to determine planning priorities in a proactive way.



A three phase methodology

Phase 1: Understanding

The goal of the first phase is to understand the current context of the neighbourhood in order to identify potential improvements and constraints related to mobility. Different data collection methods are used to create a ‘Portrait’; including field surveys, review of existing documentation and consultation activities.

Phase 2: Exploring

The objective of Phase 2 is to establish a common vision, define priorities for action, and propose solutions that respect the local identity and practices of the neighbourhood. During this phase a Citizens’ Forum and a Professional Workshop is held.

Phase 3: Building

Local partners collaborate on a Community Plan outlining goals and design solutions. The plan is used as a tool to strategize and partner with local municipal officials, transit authorities, other levels of government, as well as institutions, retailers and individuals towards the incremental implementation of these goals.


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