City of Abbotsford Economic Development Strategy
Turns out — Abbottsford is all about innovation. EcoPlan helped the City of Abbotsford to develop their economic development strategy. It provides a new approach and focus that are helping to transform Abbotsford. Working with the economic development team at the City, the strategy provides direction, objectives, strategies and actions to guide their work. Given the importance of relationship and partnership building to successful economic development in Abbotsford, stakeholder engagement and communication was at the core of the planning process. In 2017 EcoPlan and the CAED designed and facilitated Abbotsford’s first Innovation Forum as well as other forms of engagement (e.g., a business survey, stakeholder interviews, survey follow-up interviews).
Through these methods, dozens of stakeholder groups and 160 individuals from local business, local and provincial government, non-profit organizations and area First Nations were involved during the four phases of work. The resulting strategy consists of 18 actions spread across five strategies; They were designed to be practical, achievable and innovative while addressing local priorities. A second Innovation Forum was held in 2018 — again designed and facilitated by EcoPlan and the CAED.