According to a media release issued Wednesday, March 29th, "The City of Brandon has been working on the Brandon City Plan, a 30-year vision for the City of Brandon since January 2022. Over 100 public engagement sessions have been held by the Planning & Buildings Department with over 2,000 residents participating in the project and providing feedback that formed the vision. The project is currently in the final phase of community engagement where residents are being asked to view and confirm the vision.
Recently, two public engagement events were held at community centres. A small group of citizens used these events to discuss theories not related to the Brandon City Plan project and city staff were treated disrespectfully.
Democracy and freedom of speech is important to the City of Brandon. However, due to such inappropriate and unsafe behaviour, all Brandon City Plan public engagement has been paused."
The Brandon Sun reported this week that at an open house on the City Plan last Friday (Mar 24) - "several people showed up at the community centre accusing the city of wasting tax dollars on “unnecessary” bike lanes and walking paths, and of attempting to implement a “15-minute city” plan on the population, among other concerns."
The Sun reported "Another person believed that, under Brandon’s growth strategy, the community might be divided into quadrants, with expensive new hospitals built in each area that could be accessed on foot or by bicycle."
Mayor Jeff Fawcett also told the Brandon Sun "that a vocal segment of the population was misunderstanding what a city plan is meant to do, and that offering people the freedom to choose whether to drive their car or ride their bike or walk to local amenities has nothing to do with taking away freedom of movement.
“If you lived across the city, to visit your parents? Like my goodness, that’s never even crossed our minds. It’s completely irrational that you couldn’t go see someone in the city. It’s just irrational." said Fawcett.
The City of Brandon's release also stated, "The City will continue the pathway to establish a City Plan that represents our entire community. Updates regarding the Brandon City Plan will be provided in the future."