Councillors asked to approve Ballarat's future strategy

BALLARAT councillors are set to vote on an “engagement strategy” with a difference, to help guide the city’s future for the next 40 to 50 years.

Under the Ballarat Imagine strategy, postcards, tweets and photographs from the public will help Ballarat City Council determine a long-term vision for Ballarat. 

Councillors, when they meet tomorrow, will decide whether to approve the initiative, which will inform the development of The Ballarat Strategy – a plan that creates a community-led vision of Ballarat in 2040.

Participation in Ballarat Imagine will be encouraged via a range of innovative ways, according to the officers’ report to councillors.

Under the strategy, the community would be asked what they love about, imagine for and want to retain in Ballarat.

Residents could provide their answers via a broad range of mediums, including Ballarat Imagine postcards, photographs, council’s website and social media. 

The strategy calls on residents, between March and June, to “share what it is you love about Ballarat and imagine for Ballarat’s future in 2040”. 

There would be chalkboards at shopping centres to encourage shoppers to share their thoughts and the City of Ballarat would be using and encouraging the use of the hash tag #Ballaratimagine to encourage discussion via the council’s social media channels including Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

The strategy would include opportunities for residents to communicate directly with councillors. The process is an open invitation to the Ballarat community to have their say on Ballarat. The findings would influence the development of Today Tomorrow Together: The Ballarat Strategy, the Council Plan 2013-2017, health and wellbeing initiatives, council’s recreation strategy and 2013-14 budget.

Today Tomorrow Together: The Ballarat Strategy has been proposed by the council to address an emerging gap in the long term planning for Ballarat’s future.

rachel.afflick@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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