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How to implement a quality-based approach into planning

The project is about proposing a new and complementary tool for urban planning in Nunavik, which would be useful and significant to the community. Implementing a quality-based approach in the existing land use-based planning process requires a different take on "how to go about it". The wheel below proposes a step-by-step process to ensure coherence among community goals, local perspectives and assets, desired possibilities and the existing governance framework.

In contrast with usual planning strategies, this proposed process is not built according to chronological nor hierarchical steps drawing a straight line between the beginning and the end of a development project. It is rather presented as a cycle of imbricating and iterative steps aiming towards pragmatic solutions prioritized and championed by the community. These steps do not highlight a specific starting point, leaving a great deal of flexibility and creativity for the local actors at the very start of the community planning process.

You can click on any step on the wheel to access its detailed description. The chronological order in which the steps are detailed shows the sequence through which this research team proceeded. It is by no means a mandatory order to follow.

Unity is strength. This step proposes to activate a cooperative and open dialogue within the community. How does the "local pulse" feel ? What’s great about or in the village ? What could be changed or strengthened through a planning project ? The discussions should bring forward local priorities and a preliminary set of planning principles, two keystones for the rest of the process.

Northern Villages are already swarming with life, activities, services and traditions, while offering precious landscapes, resources and much more. What are the principal assets of the community ? What do residents think or feel about certain places ? What significance do they hold for older and younger citizens ? Starting with deeply rooted strengths is a great way to determine sectors for intervention that should be prioritized in the short and long term.

How can local assets be reinforced to have an even stronger appeal or sense for residents ? How can they be put at the center of the planning project ? By identifying concrete means of actions and possibilities, such as those in the Guide for Community Planning, desired outcomes can be imagined then included as parts of preliminary future scenarios. The illustrated possibilities can be put to the test during on-going discussion within the community to ensure the local social relevance and acceptability of the project.

The realization of a planning project usually implies reinforced relationships among the different stakeholders, especially between the NV and the residents. The roles and tasks of everyone should be well defined, making sure that all can take part in the decision-making. Such collaborations must remain active and be maintained for as long as possible, even after the project has come to an end.

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