City planning department moves house, streamlines the way it works (Naoibh O’Connor, Vancouver Courier)

City Hall from Cambie StreetThis story is online on the Vancouver Courier. Below we capture a few excerpts, and encourage readers to follow the link for the full article. An important topic to watch.

Developing Story: Moving and modernizing. City planning department moves house, streamlines the way it works
(Naoibh O’Connor / Vancouver Courier, January 15, 2015)

Excerpts:

  • The city’s planning and development department not only moved to a new location and reorganized in the latter half of 2014, but is in the midst of a $25-million “business transformation” project designed to modernize its systems. 
  • … Planning and development staff used to be located in the east wing of city hall, but that structurally unsafe building is being torn down. This year, Jackson said the facilities department will be working on a plan for the entire city hall campus, situated between Cambie and Yukon and West 12th and Broadway, which will include the costs associated with seismically upgrading the main city hall heritage building.
  • … Along with the physical move and various physical organizational changes, the department is also modernizing the way it functions through a $25-million permits and licenses project that started a year and a half ago. It’s designed to simplify application processes with the ultimate goal of creating an online service for all applications.
  • “It’s the largest business transformation project in the city, where a year from now 80 per cent of the people who come here won’t have to come here anymore. They can get their permits online. They can track their application online and get their approvals online. So we’re moving to an entirely paperless system,” Jackson said.
  • “We’ve gone online for our trades permits, plumbing and electrical. They’re about 50 per cent online now and then we’ll be doing development permits, building permits and all the larger applications later on this year.”

    – See the full article here: http://www.vancourier.com/news/developing-story-moving-and-modernizing-1.1732314

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