Andru McCracken, Editor

Andru McCracken, EDITOR

You probably don’t have a plan. I think that’s totally okay. I don’t just endorse planlessness, I live it daily. I figure I’m happy enough, I don’t need one. I’ve got a sweet family, a bike and skis and places to use them.

But if the day to day is wearing you out, if you work too much and laugh too little, if you’ve got sleepless nights and bleary eyed days, in short, if you are unhappy: developing a plan to change your life should be a top priority. You’d think.

But the reality is planning is scary as hell. Planning requires us to take responsibility for what is happening in our lives and change it… somehow. Even when there is no readily apparent way.

Sure, work may suck, but what else could I do? Is there a higher paying job just waiting for me? Not likely.
Just starting a plan requires us to solidify that something within our control is not working and that things could be better… if we worked harder. It gives me the creeps just thinking about it, do what you are already doing while training for something else: It sounds like a toxic mix of work and uncertainty.

On another level
A few weeks ago we reported that the Village of Valemount is working on an Official Community Plan and Zoning Bylaw review. In some ways this is only slightly less problematic than our personal plans.

When we commit to giving our input on the community plan, we acknowledge that not everything is right in smallsville.

Take the lack of supply of market housing, the lack of variety of homes available, the gap tooth business districts, the lack of connectivity throughout the community (anyone else with kids notice an almost complete lack of sidewalks?) and the myriad problems that face the community fall in our laps. We start by owning the problems, and then move on to attempting to solve them, not with a magic pot of money or a magical volunteer construction crew, but with a series of arcane directives and bylaw changes.

As I look at the input that has been gathered for the Official Community Plan I have to say, I’m pretty impressed. While the changes presented could help make

Valemount a nicer place in many tangible ways, these aren’t insane proposals. No one is proposing a monorail here, this stuff is achievable, and not so completely different from the ways the community is naturally developing.

I really appreciate the work around incentivizing infill and increasing density on a small stretch of 5th Avenue. It reflects a trend that has already worked pretty well for Valemount, new businesses are making the area busy, and that attracts other people and businesses there. It’s a familiar idea that seems to be working.

I also like the thoughtful work on connectivity which builds on the strength of trails that already exist here, oddly this too parallels work the community has already done with the Big Foot Trail.

Small achievable steps towards goals that we are already familiar with… It kind of takes the fear right out of the equation.

Wait, maybe I should work on a personal plan…