The City of Vancouver has launched the Sea2City Design Challenge to explore ideas for addressing sea level rise and coastal flooding in False Creek.

The Sea2City Design Challenge (Sea2City) brings together two multidisciplinary teams over a 12-month period to:

  • Explore solutions to guide urban development and ecological revitalization in the False Creek floodplain.
  • Inform the next phase of its Climate Adaptation Plan and Vancouver Plan.

“Sea level rise is an unprecedented challenge for a coastal city like Vancouver,” said Mayor Kennedy Stewart. “It requires bold and creative thinking and the City is looking forward to welcoming new perspectives and ideas to address climate change and sea level rise in False Creek.”

Design teams

Guided by community values and design principles identified through earlier engagement with residents, business owners, and others who work and play in and around False Creek, the Sea2City design teams will work cooperatively with us and project partners to:

  1. Explore coastal adaptation approaches that respond to the social equity, economic, and ecological challenges posed by sea level rise and coastal flooding.
  2. Investigate coastal adaptation approaches for sea level rise beyond one metre.
  3. Expand the City’s toolbox of coastal flood management approaches.
  4. Increase public awareness of climate change and sea level rise.

“We’re looking forward to bringing together a range of people, practitioners, and thinkers to address a complex challenge,” said Angela Danyluk, senior sustainability specialist at the City of Vancouver. “It’s an exciting opportunity for the City to connect innovative design with public engagement. A successful outcome will be one that connects with the public and builds a shared understanding of climate change, sea level rise and the land and water we call False Creek.”

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Sea2City will include three rounds of activities, including:

  1. Public learning and design events.
  2. Advisory group sessions.
  3. Decolonization and Indigenous perspective workshops.

“The visions that emerge from Sea2City will inspire public conversations and initiate action,” said Deb Guenther, project director at Mithun+One. “The process of imagining an adapted waterfront can elevate multiple intersectional and urgent issues—climate adaptation, economic development, and truth and reconciliation—and how these might change our experiences and shape an equitable built environment.”

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