More than 80 per cent of Canadians live in cities, which is one of the highest rates of urbanization in the G7, according to Statistics Canada. As urban populations grow, municipalities are tackling a range of city-building challenges, from protecting heritage to improving road safety, and there are often competing views on the public realm. Cities across the country need to stop and reassess their visions, bringing in the voices of planners, developers, policy makers, non-profits and citizens, for their input.
Aaron Aubin participated on the panel discussion regarding land use planning commenting that Canada “needs to be more intentional about creating places that reflect Indigenous culture. You see it in some cities like Vancouver the moment you arrive at the airport, but in places like Calgary or Ottawa there isn’t as much of a recollection that people existed here before the Europeans arrived. The backbone of our cities is formed on Indigenous knowledge, from our highways to the food we eat and our fresh drinking water supplies. Yet Indigenous people still don’t have the opportunity to leverage their culture and ways of knowing.”