Put your two cents into the region’s future

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by Victoria Grey

If you’ve ever felt like the municipality was doing too much or too little when it comes to something you care about in the community now is your chance to let them know.

The cities of Cambridge, Waterloo, Kitchener and the Region of Waterloo are launching a public engagement platform together called, Engage Waterloo Region (EngageWR). The online tool gives residents the opportunity to have their say on local projects and initiatives.

The municipalities have evolving needs and are now looking to engage as many members of the community as possible. The cities and the region switched to the new platform to help make it easier for the public to let the city know what they want without having to go to a town hall meeting or information session.

They can participate with the user-friendly online tool from the comfort of their own home. A person only has to register for the service once, which will give participants full access to all of the online public engagement opportunities for the Region of Waterloo and the cities of Kitchener, Cambridge and Waterloo. Registered users can choose preferences and receive notifications about topics that mean the most to them.

The site allows users to participate in different ways and stay updated throughout any given project.

Visit www.EngageWR.ca to see how it works and register.

Some of the current and upcoming projects on the site include Smart Waterloo Region. The region has a one in five chance of winning $50 million to improve child and youth well being. To win the region needs demonstrate why it’s the best community in the country for youths. Help the Region by spreading the word, sharing your ideas, sharing your tech talents, attending a meeting or recommending a youth with good ideas.

To learn more and participate, visit www.smartwr.ca.

The region is also very concerned with climate change and is preparing a Community Climate Adaptation (CCA) Plan to help Waterloo Region reduce the risks to the community by extreme weather and changing climate conditions.

Visit www.engagewr.ca/cca-plan to learn more about the plan and share your ideas.

Cambridge is hoping to find out what people think about the Cambridge Farmer’s Market.

Tell them about your experiences with the Market to help them improve visitor’s experiences at the market.

To learn more and participate, visit www.engagecambridge.ca.

The City of Kitchener’s recreation department wants to know what people think of the city’s facilities. Tell them what you think about their leisure facilities and recreation programs. They are hoping to learn more about how to best support residents healthy, active lifestyles.

To learn more and participate, visit www.engagekitchener.ca.

Kitchener also hopes to get some insight on its sidewalk winter maintenance program. This winter, bylaw officers are proactively inspecting sidewalks throughout the city to ensure snow and ice is cleared 24 hours after a snowfall to help keep the community moving safely. Let them know what you think about the program to help add to a council report due this June.

To learn more and participate, visit www.engagekitchener.ca.

Waterloo is hoping to get resident’s opinions when it comes to the Waterloo Strategic Plan. They hope to engage residents on the next strategic plan and the future of its program and activities guide to help make programs better for the community.

To learn more and participate, visit www.engagewaterloo.ca.