This web site features the outcomes of the Urban Studio and includes a photo album of student work and presentations, an Adobe Acrobat downloadable verions of the report, Fresh Eyes on Gibsons, and links to the UBC School of Community and Regional Planning, the School of Architecture, the Landscape Architecture Program, and other related sites.


The UBC Urban Studio is a joint effort of the UBC Schools of Architecture, Community and Regional Planning, and the Landscape Architecture Program,professors
Ron Walkey (School of Architecture)
Penny Gurstein (School of Community and Regional Planning)
Patrick Condon (Landscape Architecture Program)
Joanne Proft (Landscape Architecture Program)

In the fall of 2000, thirty-two UBC students from the Schools of Architecture, Community and Regional Planning, and the Landscape Architecture Program applied their "fresh eyes" to the coastal town of Gibsons and its hinterlands. This unique six week Urban Studio was run as a series of small charrettes, wherein students were introduced to the town in September, and by the end of October were to produce a multifaceted blueprint for the future.

A fundamental goal of the Urban Studio is to explore the power of urban design to structure an equitable, healthy, sustainable and gratifying context for the social lives of a particular urban context. In meeting this goal, students are required to address the following objectives:

* to design for people and their real needs;
* to use form and structure to make places;
* to understand the various schools of urban design thought and to experiment with their adaptation to local circumstances;
* to provide a particular site with evocative visions for a complex and dynamic urbanism; and
* to enhance the economic, social, and ecological sustainability of urban form, and of a selected site in particular.


The population of Gibsons and its environs will, over the next four decades, double from its present population of 10,000 to an estimated 20,000. This is a phenomenal rate of growth and will inevitably change the look and feel of Gibsons. The Urban Studio posed some basic questions such as: what will this larger community look like, feel like, be like; how will the citizens of this landscape work, have families, age, make friends, acquire a home, make a life, face death; and will this change be for the better or for the worse? Gibsons represents, in microcosm, all of the issues that confront the larger Georgia Basin landscape, some of which include aging-in-place, long commutes, telecommuting, tourism, and making the transition from a resource- based economy to a service-based economy. The coincidence of these important issues places Gibsons in a unique position to reconsider its role within the larger region, and to chart its course for the future.


We owe a great deal of thanks to Mayor Barry Janyk and Town Planner, Chris Marshall without whose assistance this project would not have been possible.

We would also like to thank those individuals and organizations who provided resources and information towards the preparation of this report. They include:

* Town of Gibsons Staff and City Council
* Sunshine Coast Regional District
* Gibsons Economic Development Partnership Community Futures Development Corporation
* John McRae, Realtor
* Emily Perry, Gibsons Chamber of Commerce
* Steve
O'Neil, Gibsons Landing Business Association
* Lola Westell, Elphinstone Pioneer Museum