Less than 18 hours after the city adopted its new official community plan, Mayor Henry Braun told hundreds of attendees at the annual mayor’s breakfast that the document would play a key role in Abbotsford’s growth as the Fraser Valley’s hub.
Braun said the new OCP will help create a city with more vibrant neighbourhoods and a city centre where people can gather.
The breakfast, the second of its kind since the election of Braun in the fall of 2014, was held at Tradex and sold out, with more than 400 attendees.
Braun told the crowd – which included many businessmen and women – that the plan may see the city change tact, approving proposals that would have been rejected in the past and rejecting developments that may have received the green light previously.
The event was punctuated by the premiere of a five-minute long marketing video on the OCP featuring local comedians Sunee Dhaliwal and Cliff Prang.
Created by local video production company Cassiar MediaWorks, the video starts with Dhaliwal questioning why he should stay in Abbotsford. Dhaliwal says he’s planning on moving, and aims some pointed barbs at the car-dependent nature of Abbotsford, issues with local transit, and subsidies paid out to the Abbotsford Heat.
“We don’t even have a city centre or cool neighbourhoods like Kits or Gastown,” Dhaliwal exclaims.
The rest of the video features Prang showing Dhaliwal around local businesses and attractions. Eventually, the two of them are introduced to the OCP and, in their bathrobes, speak with Braun.
“Over time, we’re going to build a city for 200,000 people,” Braun explains.