Skip header and navigation

1 record – page 1 of 1.

Repository
City of Burnaby Archives
Date
1940-2005
Collection/Fonds
Planning Department fonds
Description Level
Fonds
Physical Description
80m of textual records and other material
Scope and Content
Fonds consists of those records created during the regular conduct of business by the Planning Department and its predecessor agencies according to their mandate of providing professional and technical advice to Council on the current and future uses of City land and resources. The fonds is organi…
Repository
City of Burnaby Archives
Date
1940-2005
Collection/Fonds
Planning Department fonds
Physical Description
80m of textual records and other material
Description Level
Fonds
Access Restriction
Subject to FOIPPA
Reproduction Restriction
Reproductions subject to FOIPPA
Scope and Content
Fonds consists of those records created during the regular conduct of business by the Planning Department and its predecessor agencies according to their mandate of providing professional and technical advice to Council on the current and future uses of City land and resources. The fonds is organized into the following series: Planning Department Government files; Regulations and Controls series; Property Files; Planning – General Files; Planning – Economic and Finance Files; Planning – Sociology and Demography Files; Planning – Municipal Design Files; Transportation Files; Planning Services; Planning – Facilities; Environmental Factors; Housing and Residential Development; Commerce and Industry; Redevelopment and Urban Renewal; Studies, Reports, and Conferences; Subdivision Control files; Strata Title Properties; Preliminary Plan Approval series; Planning Department Rezoning files and Planning Department Photograph series.
History/Biography
The City of Burnaby Planning Department was established on October 9, 1956 when the City Council unanimously carried the motion to create a distinct department to deal with planning issues within the City and appointed Mr. William John Blakely as its head. This decision followed a report and recommendation made by the City’s Chief Administrative Officer which indicated that the role of the Planning Engineer and his staff had quickly expanded to become a separate division within the Engineering Department and that they were functioning as an independent unit in all but name. The proposed separation of the Engineering and Planning departments had been in the works since the early part of 1956 when staff changes and restructuring within the Engineering Department’s Planning Division illustrated the undermanned condition of the Planning Engineer’s office. As a result, Council asked the Chief Administrative Officer to undertake a study examining the feasibility of creating a distinct Planning Department. This report was delivered to Council on July 3, 1956 but was laid over until a Committee of the Council had the opportunity to study the functions of the Planning department to determine the necessity of the proposal. The Committee’s findings were in line with the initial report and the Planning Department was established with a staff of nine (the head Planning Engineer, an Administrative Planner, three Research Planning Assistants, a Draughtsman, a Subdivision Control Clerk, a department Clerk and a Clerk Stenographer). This new department was to offer advice and carry out the work intensive in matters such as zoning and rezoning applications, subdivision control, traffic and transportation planning, and general City planning schemes. Prior to the creation of the Planning Department, a number of bodies within the City had been responsible for fulfilling the functions carried out by this new unit. In the earliest years of the City, the members of Council were responsible for matters of planning and were assisted in their job by the City’s Engineer or any number of hired consultants (e.g. surveyors, cartographers). By 1906, however, the provincial laws surrounding the subdivision process had changed, and local governments were charged with the task of approving all private subdivision plans in their respective Municipalities. In Burnaby, the City Council passed a bylaw decreeing that all subdivision plans were to be submitted to Council for review and the City Engineer was responsible for ensuring compliance with the law. After the first Town Planning Bylaw in 1924 which restricted the type and size of construction that could occur in certain City areas, the Engineering and Building departments were to work together to oversee the enforcement of the Bylaw and the development of City plans. The scope and competence required to carry out this work grew as Burnaby’s population expanded, and in 1930 Council passed the Town Planning Commission Bylaw (No. 1028) that saw the creation of a permanent body – the Town Planning Commission – which was to serve as an advisory body to help direct the planning activities in the City while the actual work continued to be carried out by the Engineering Department. This body was comprised of the Reeve, the Chairman of the School Board, the Chairman of the Park Committee (later, the Board of Parks Commissioners), and six appointed citizens who served three-year terms. Council referred all matters of subdivisions, transportation planning, and rezoning to this Commission, which was later supported in its work by several other special or standing committees such as the Subdivision Committee, the Apartment Committee, the Transportation Committee or the Town Planning Board of Appeal. By 1953 it became apparent that the advisory committees that were dedicated to these planning issues needed a permanent staff to carry out the work intensive, so a restructuring of the Engineering department resulted in a permanent Planning Engineer’s office being created. The Town Planning Commission continued in its advisory capacity even after the determination came in 1956 to create a separate Planning Department. When Bylaw No. 4473 was passed in 1963, the Town Planning Commission was disbanded in favor of a new Advisory Planning Commission that would turn over all routine matters such as subdivision and rezoning applications to the Planning Department but would offer advice and community input into the more complex planning schemes within the City and act as an intermediary in cases where Council and Planning staff were in disagreement. A new Advisory Planning Commission Bylaw (No. 7600) was adopted in 1980 which allowed for even greater community participation in the planning process. The Planning Department was initially responsible to report directly to Council, but in 1957 the administrative structure of Municipal staff changed with the introduction of the Burnaby Municipal Manager Bylaw (No. 3859) and from that point on the head of the Planning Department held a direct reporting relationship to the Municipal Manager, who in turn was responsible for reporting the activities of the Department to the City Council. Over the years, the internal structure and the scope of responsibilities of the Department have changed during periods of staff reorganizations, but it has come to be comprised of two divisions: Current and Long Range Planning. The functions of the Current Planning Division include rezoning, subdivision, development plan areas, preliminary plan approvals, urban design, heritage planning, and urban trails and bicycle routes. The Long Range Planning Division is responsible for environmental planning concerns, transportation planning, housing, neighborhood area planning, social planning and planning information services. The following individuals have served as Planning Engineer and/or Director of the Planning Department for the City of Burnaby: William John Blakely 1954-1956 (as Planning Engineer) 1956-1963 (as Head of the Department) Anthony P. Parr 1964-1993 Don G. Stenson 1993-2001 Jack S. Belhouse 2001-2006 Basil Luksun 2006-2012 Lou Pelletier 2012-present
Formats
Microforms exist for some records. See series descriptions.
Media Type
Textual Record
Photograph
Moving Images
Notes
Title based on contents of fonds
Less detail
Back to top
Back to Top