Cochrane Growth Management Strategy
Client Town of Cochrane
Location Cochrane | Alberta | Canada
During recent years, the Town of Cochrane has been one of the fastest growing small urban centres in Alberta and additional lands annexed in 2004 may not accommodate projected growth. The Growth Management Strategy for the Town of Cochrane will define the 50-year land requirements for future land-uses. Traditional methods employed for growth management studies rely heavily on calculations of developable land and projections of future population. However, Cochrane’s strong commitment to sustainability calls for a different approach; one that embraces a full range of smart growth strategies. A growth strategy that moves towards sustainability requires a detailed vision of Cochrane’s future that goes beyond population projections and land suitability analysis. Smart growth management strategies consider, among other things, the physical form of new development.
O2 developed three learning scenarios for Cochrane – suburban living, expanded downtown, and neighborhood centres. Key drivers for the scenarios include the introduction of commuter rail service and the potential relocation of industrial lands adjacent to the Town’s downtown. Each scenario illustrates different levels of density and physical forms of future development. Scenarios are compared using Cochrane’s adopted sustainability indicators and other relevant measures.
The size of the study area called for the investigation of redevelopment opportunities at an urban design scale to test how much growth could be absorbed within the downtown area. These urban design investigations allow Cochrane to visualize the sustainable future they hope to create.