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Land Use

Lead by:
Neil Paskewitz, Associate Vice-President (Facilities Management), and PACS member



Current Mission Statement:
**As a new Area of Focus of the Sustainability Action Plan, a Mission Statement will be developed**

Background:

The campus occupies 286,000 square meters of building area, spread over 2 campuses with a total area of 290 acres.

Facilities Management updates the Campus Master Plan on a 5 – 7 year cycle, with the last one being completed in 2016.  The Campus Master Plan guides the development of the University’s built environment in support of the University’s Strategic Plan.

Strategy 6 of the Campus Master Plan is Sustainable Development, and states: The University intends to provide community leadership in responsible and effective environmental action through sustainable developments that are land, energy, and waste efficient.

As an educational servant and intellectual leader in Regina, Saskatchewan and beyond, the University should, through example, point the way to “a form of development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs” (1984 Brundtland Commission definition of Sustainable Development). By establishing and implementing explicit  development strategies, and by arousing the awareness of its members to environmental concerns, the University of Regina will join with other major institutions and corporations in providing leadership in responsible, effective, and sustainable environmental action.

Six goals for sustainable development for this improvement are:

  • Protect ecosystems and support restoration of natural systems;
  • Promote development of livable communities;
  • Use resources efficiently, including energy, water, land, and materials;
  • Create healthy indoor environments;
  • Move toward eliminating waste and pollution for the life cycle of the project;
  • Consider alternatives to fossil fuels.


These sustainable development goals are reinforced throughout the Campus Plan.

In 2016, the University created the first Campus Landscape Plan.  From a pure economic/technical perspective, establishing a sustainable approach to landscape design and management is increasingly becoming a mandatory requirement. On the Canadian prairies, it is now certain that climate change and global warming will bring more extreme weather events and more severe and prolonged drought conditions. Consequently, heavy reliance upon intensive maintenance and artificial irrigation will likely become unsupportable in the near future.

In terms of landscape stewardship, sustainability also refers to a broad range of economic, social, aesthetic and environmental attributes. While it does refer to the economical management of landscapes over time, sustainability also refers to the ability of landscapes to support necessary functions, to facilitate a broad range of recreational and social activities, to evoke feelings of identity and recognition among users, to shelter and nourish, and to provide simple delight and enjoyment.

The Landscape Plan embraces this more expansive view of sustainability. In order to produce real savings and provide enhanced social and aesthetic benefits, the Plan seeks to employ vernacular patterns and natural systems that originate in and are compatible with the prevailing prairie conditions.

Water conservation is central to developing sustainable landscapes. Through effective storm water management, snow management and plant selection, dependence upon irrigation to support high maintenance landscapes can be reduced.

Campus landscapes should be sustainable over the long term. They should also reflect a multi-dimensional aesthetic sense in which order and discipline are melded with a respect and appreciation for natural systems.

Design objectives include:

  • Develop a range of landscape types that respond to specific site conditions and user requirements, and that serve to support enduring campus structures.
  • Select plants that require less irrigation while meeting campus objectives for diverse, attractive and useful landscapes.
  • Define levels of maintenance intensity that are matched to landscapes according to their role, location and purpose.
  • Capture storm water and snow melt, and direct it towards planted areas.


Theme Group Candidates:

We are calling for a mix of students, staff, faculty and industry experts, and strive to honour the principles of EDI and reconciliation.
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Meetings 


Session 1:   Duration: 2 hours.  Suggested Date:  May 25, 2:00 pm

Each Theme Group will gather to:

  1. Develop the Mission Statement
  2. Discuss how this theme is connected to the UR Strategic Plan
  3. Review which of the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals (and/or specific SDG Targets/Indicators) does this theme support? (Note: there may be several)
  4. Confirm that the proposed membership and stakeholder engagement plan represents students, staff, faculty and principles of EDI and reconciliation.
  5. Review tool for Session 2 – Brainstorming Session


Session 2:   Duration:  2 hours.  Suggested Date:  May 27, 9:00 am

The Thematic Working Group will gather to;

  1. Describe the sustainability issues/problems related to Land Use at U of R.
  2. Describe how we can build on past success and Master Plans to advance sustainability and decrease environmental impact.
  3. Recommend action.

The Theme group will brainstorm the above items and produce a prioritized list of actions.