Inaugural Year of ‘Brandon Design Studio’ Program Hailed a Success

December 18, 2015


Brandon, MB – A unique public engagement program launched earlier this year by the City of Brandon’s Planning & Building Safety Department has been extremely well-received and has department officials already planning for bigger and better programming in 2016.

The Planning & Building Safety Department launched its “Brandon Design Studio” public engagement program in January of 2015 as a way for the community to learn more about how they can be part of the land use development process affecting their neighbourhood, but more importantly, how they can be part of the City’s larger, long-term efforts to build a sustainable Brandon. Regular workshops and public information sessions were hosted within the Brandon Design Studio Space of the Cultural Resource Centre at the A.R. McDiarmid Civic Complex, and staff also took the program “on the road” to the Brandon Home & Leisure Show in the spring.

Department staff organized and hosted nearly a dozen workshops through 2015, on topics ranging from the Zoning By-law amendment process, how to mitigate household radon gas, to an informational session on the new 2013 Manitoba Energy Code.  The program’s final event in November, entitled, “Building a Sustainable City – Starting with Your Own Home”, featured a guest speaker from Built Green Canada and even resulted in a few interested homeowners and developers wanting to be part of the Built Green certification effort.

It’s estimated in the range of 450 individuals attended ‘Brandon Design Studio’ programming over the course of 2015, which City of Brandon Planning & Building Safety Department Director Louisa Garbo calls a healthy level of participation for a brand new program.

“Our goals for the ‘Brandon Design Studio’ program have been multi-faceted. We wanted to show the public about all the other things we do besides processing development and permit applications as a land use regulatory department,” Garbo notes. “This program has provided an opportunity for us to collaborate with our citizens in building a sustainable City and to educate the public on land use development and building safety issues; but most importantly, we’ve been provided with a very unique forum to interact and connect with the wider community.”

“The Brandon Design Studio Program is a great way to engage Brandon residents in the decisions that will shape the way our community builds its future,” adds Brandon Chamber of Commerce President Jordan Ludwig. “Development in any community can be hard to understand, and this program encourages input into the system while simultaneously promoting building and growing in a sustainable way.”

For more information about the Brandon Design Studio public engagement program, visit the City of Brandon’s website at


Building_a_Sustainable_City_-_pamphlet.pdf (755.0 KB)