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A Valley for Tomorrow – Horizon 2025

From the idea to the project

The genesis of the idea

Our region:

Right from the time our RCM was founded more than 150 years ago, we have always focused our economic development on our natural resource development.

Be it forestry development (mainly primary processing), wildlife harvesting (hunting and fishing), territory settlement (vacationers) and so on, all of these sectors, which are important to the Gatineau Valley community, share a common denominator. Our development, diversification and mobilization reflexes are almost exclusively oriented toward the development of these resources.

We seek to improve the productivity of one sector, we want to diversify yet another one, and we attempt to streamline others, and on it goes. All of these actions, all very legitimate and needed to confront change, are still oriented toward natural resource development.

External influences

On the other side of the coin, today’s world is in the throes of perpetual change. There are more than seven billion of us on the planet, the world’s economy is in upheaval, and pressure is being exerted on the environment and various resources. These major changes cannot be ignored, and the Gatineau Valley does not operate in a vacuum –we too feel the influence of external trends.

However, what do these changes mean for the Gatineau Valley? What effects will they have on current and future generations? What trends will have an actual impact on our daily lives such as the economy, health and education, to name a few? Where are our powers of influence? What areas of activity hold promise, taking into account sustainable occupation and development of the territory? What decisions can we make today to have a positive effect on the course of our region’s development? How can we ensure development that is representative of our needs, concerns and values?

These are some of the basic premises that led to a decision by the Gatineau Valley Société d’aide au développement des collectivités (SADC) to develop its project known as “A Valley for Tomorrow –Horizon 2025.”

The project

In order to place the project on solid footing, we thoroughly examined a host of factors such as sociodemographic profile, geography, areas of activity present, strengths and weaknesses, etc.

In conjunction with the SADC project, the Gatineau Valley RCM (the administrative entity), in compliance with An Act respecting Land Use Planning and Development, was required to engage in a vision exercise, the result of which was a vision statement that had to represent a futuristic portrait of a territory and its rational use declared from the standpoint of sustainable and balanced development.

Since this exercise had to involve the participation of economic, social, cultural and environmental actors and since SADC was already planning a somewhat similar process, the RCM joined up with SADC to move forward with the project.

In October 2012, a symposium entitled “A Valley for Tomorrow–Horizon 2025” was attended by fifty or so persons, mainly between the ages of 20 and 30, who engaged in strategic reflection and identified areas of opportunity in the Gatineau Valley.

This exercise, best described as a “visionary chat”, identified areas of opportunity in the four strategic axes identified, i.e., forestry, agriculture, vacationers and tourism.

Partners

To support development of the project, SADC and the RCM joined up with two other partners, i.e., Emploi Québec and the Local Development Centre.

The outcomes

This symposium was not an end in itself. Quite the opposite is true. It was and continues to be a starting point for other activities. It has shaped a new vision, a new way of seeing things, and created increased sensitivity to the impact of our current actions on future development.

 

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Strategic Thinking and opportunity areas Gatineau Valley

See the report link (French)

 

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SADC
Vallée-de-la-Gatineau

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100, rue Principale sud, suite 210
Maniwaki, QC
J9E 3L4

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