North Cowichan’s Bell McKinnon Local Area Plan Takes Gold at Land Summit

(North Cowichan, BC) – The Planning Institute of British Columbia recognized North Cowichan’s Bell McKinnon Local Area Plan as an example of excellence in policy planning at an award ceremony in Vancouver on May 8. North Cowichan and its consultant, Barefoot Planning & Design, received the gold award for Excellence in the Policy Planning – Small Town & Rural Areas category. 

“The Bell McKinnon Local Area Plan is critical to development of a new neighbourhood area centred around the future Cowichan District Hospital site on Bell McKinnon Road,” says Mayor Al Siebring. “This Plan sets a policy framework to support this important community corridor as it transitions from primarily rural residential to a compact, sustainable growth centre over the next 20-30 years.”

The Bell McKinnon Local Area Plan was adopted in Fall 2018 with the vision of creating a model green growth centre that is a vibrant, walkable, urban village that facilitates healthy living at all stages of life. The Plan includes a number of progressive planning policies and development requirements, such as maximum impervious surface area, baseline requirements for tree canopy coverage, and baseline requirements for energy efficiency based on the BC Energy Step Code.

The Plan was developed through a comprehensive community engagement process with North Cowichan staff and decision-makers, stakeholders and service providers, neighbourhood residents, landowners, and employees, and local First Nations.

The Bell McKinnon Local Area Plan and additional information are available at:

Evan Peterson from Barefoot Planning and Design and Chris Hutton from North Cowichan.


For more information, please contact:
Chris Hutton, MCIP, RPP
Community Planning Coordinator
Municipality of North Cowichan