10 Strategic Priorities & Council Leads
In its 2017 strategic planning process, City Council adopted a new leadership model that empowered Councillors to take leadership roles in 10 Strategic Priority areas. Meaningfully engaging citizens and stakeholders to develop real community ownership in addressing these challenges for the city is a critical piece of this new approach.
In 2021, there was a renewed commitment to continue using this leadership model in the development of the 2022-2025 Strategic Plan.
The new Strategic Plan was approved by City Council on January 31, 2022, and the 2022-2025 Strategic Priorities & corresponding Council leads are identified below.
Reconciliation, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion - Mayor Clark
City Council is prioritizing work to foster meaningful organizational and policy change to help extinguish institutionalized and systemic racism.
This also acknowledges systemic discrimination experienced by 2SLGBTQQIA+, BIPOC, people with disabilities and other equity groups.
- City Council recognizes the negative impact of inherently unequal institutional power structures shaped by generations of colonial practices.
- The City is centering this priority around the original inhabitants of this territory, while acknowledging that immigrants, refugees, Black, Asian, people of colour and others have also been affected by colonization, racism, ableism, systemic discrimination and other forms of trauma.
- The creation of a decolonization framework will support equal opportunity for success and ensure Saskatoon is a socially, politically and economically equitable municipality.
- This work will prioritize listening to the voices of those with lived and living experiences, ensuring they occupy a prominent role in leading the work and making relevant decisions.
Economic Development - Councillor Hill
Supporting economic development strategies that will position Saskatoon for success in a rapidly changing global economy is a priority for this Council.
- As the biggest city in a resource-based province, Saskatoon is vulnerable to fluctuations in commodity prices, which can impact business investments in our city. Building on the city’s diverse economy is key to long-term economic success and to ensuring resiliency in times of economic shock.
- To enhance this position, Council will work with the Saskatoon Regional Economic Development Authority (SREDA), business entities, postsecondary institutions, Indigenous organizations and all orders of government to support investments and sustain a climate that generates enduring economic benefits.
- In this context, economic benefits include the potential for more employment opportunities, investments in social and physical infrastructure, corporate profitability and an improving standard of living.
Community Safety and Well-Being - Councillor Gough
City Council is prioritizing an integrated and effective system of services to promote community safety and well-being in Saskatoon through strategic action and partnerships.
- Gaps in existing social systems have led to persistent concerns about safety, crime, inequality, homelessness and core housing needs.
- Residents are calling for gaps to be closed, and they recognize that a high degree of collaboration across sectors and governments is essential.
- They want to see strengthened leadership on these issues at the City.
- The development of, and alignment with, community-level strategies will help define the role of the City and civic services in improving community safety and well-being.
- Engagement with all levels of government, the social serving sector and residents with living and lived experiences will be prioritized.
Engagement on Infill and Growth - Councillor Kirton
Balanced growth requires a combination of infill and greenfield development to respond to Saskatoon’s current and future demographics and market preferences. Recognizing that growth and infill can disrupt life for existing residents and generate inherent tensions, City Council prioritizes predictable development processes while finding innovative ways to align neighbourhood desires with city-building goals.
- It is important to listen and to consider the concerns of residents who are experiencing infill. By developing engagement strategies that enable neighbourhood residents to actively participate in land use planning and city-building, the City will increase public confidence and understanding of processes and shared outcomes.
- Providing accessible, digestible information resources can bridge the knowledge gap, while inclusive engagement with affected residents can foster more equitable approaches and create conditions that allow for meaningful dialogue and mutual understanding.
- Similarly, a clear path for developers provides continuity and increases predictability for everyone involved. Ultimately, prospective homeowners and/or residents have a better understanding of the potential for change in Saskatoon neighbourhoods.
Recreation, Culture and Leisure - Councillor Davies
Council is prioritizing the development of recreation, parks, cultural amenities and programs to enable residents and visitors to be healthy, active, connected to nature and to have fun in all four seasons.
- As Saskatoon grows, it is essential that the City continue to offer residents and visitors a variety of recreation, culture and leisure opportunities. Currently, however, demand for civic recreational facilities far exceeds supply and sport, culture and recreation needs are continually changing.
- Demand for new facilities, maintenance of existing amenities and development of novel programs will require us to be innovative and seek new partnerships.
Regional Planning - Councillor Donauer
City Council is prioritizing the development of a vibrant, competitive and well-planned region built on partnerships with surrounding urban and rural municipalities and First Nations.
- Ensuring that a long-term plan is in place creates certainty for the future growth of the city and the highquality of life in the region.
- Through the Saskatoon North Partnership for Growth, with Warman, Martensville, Osler and the Rural Municipality of Corman Park, important strides have been made in developing a policy and planning framework that ensures everyone in the region benefits from future growth and provision of services.
Downtown Development - Councillor Block
Our Downtown is proudly urban yet has a prairie heart. There is room to breathe, space to grow and everyone belongs.
- In partnership with residents, businesses, institutions and organizations, we will accelerate our plan to create a dynamic, inclusive, safe and welcoming place in the ohtahynah, the heart of our city on Treaty 6 Territory and the Traditional Homeland of the Métis.
- We will do this by facilitating more opportunities for homes, jobs, activities and experiences Downtown, and by providing easier options to get around.
Environmental Sustainability - Councillor Loewen and Councillor Gersher
The City of Saskatoon has documented a continuing decline in our environmental quality related to waste, ecological footprint and air quality. City Council will work to reverse this trend.
- A priority for Council is to take meaningful steps to help transform the City as a high per capita emitter of greenhouse gases to a model city of innovation in energy conservation, renewables and waste diversion.
- We will involve the community and foster environmental leadership that inspires action, harnesses enthusiasm and facilitates equitable access.
Transportation - Councillor Dubois
How residents move around the city will continue to be a focus as Saskatoon grows and responds to evolving environmental policies and regulations, as well as new and disruptive technologies.
- Council is implementing transportation and mobility plans that will service our city for the next several decades.
- Creating a safe, equitable, efficient, modern and integrated transportation system requires decisions about transportation infrastructure, active transportation, a Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system and new technologies.
Smart City - Councillor Jeffries
Council is prioritizing the application of technology and emerging trends in Big Data Analytics to improve services and processes, thereby meeting the changing needs of residents and businesses.
- The City will take calculated risks through the implementation of smallscale pilot projects that nurture opportunities, promote collaborative problem-solving and advance innovation and diversity of thought.
- The City will foster creativity and growth in the technology sector through partnership development and strategic investment.
Saskatoon citizens care about their community and want to help shape its future. It is important to continue to engage citizens in conversations about what Saskatoon will look like in four years from now, to seven generations from now within each of the 10 priority areas.
Check back here for updates on future engagement opportunities so you can be part of the conversation.
"Let's Talk Trends" Event
To kick things off, the January 16, 2017 "Let's Talk Trends" event provided an opportunity to explore how Saskatoon will be shaped into the future. Karen Thoreson, President of the Alliance for Innovation, a network of innovative cities and countries across the United States, assisted with this assessment. The Alliance’s new research, “The Next Big Things: The Next 20 Years in Local Government”, highlights 44 trends that could impact communities in the next generation. They are categorized in the areas of Resource, Technology, Demographic and Governance Trends.
This was an exciting opportunity for Saskatoon since it was the first time the Alliance for Innovation had a City Council and members of the public involved in this type of planning process. The event was complemented with presentations from Saskatoon experts offering local perspectives. All of this together will strengthen our ability to ensure the four year priorities are consistent with longer term plans that address complex trends affecting Saskatoon over the next twenty years.
Thanks to everyone who participated in the January 16, 2017 "Let's Talk Trends" event at City Hall! If you missed it, you can watch the video. The "Let's Talk Trends" event starts at 1:41:45 (following the regular meeting of the Governance and Priorities Committee meeting).
"Let's Talk Trends" Event Details
January 16, 2017
City Council Chambers – 222 3rd Avenue North
6:00 p.m. Karen Thoreson, President of the Alliance for Innovation
7:00 p.m. Presentation from Saskatoon Local Experts
8:30 p.m. Mayor & Councillor Meet & Greet (City Hall Lobby)
Join us in person in City Council Chambers starting at 6:00 p.m. Parking is available at the back of City Hall on 4th Avenue North.
Watch the presentation live on Shaw TV (Channel 10)
View on the City Live Stream
Join the City of Saskatoon's Citizen Advisory Panel!
Saskatoon City Council and Administration value community input on a variety of City initiatives, programs and services. We encourage you to sign up to be a member of the Citizen Advisory Panel and to receive invitations to future online engagement opportunities.