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Community Engagement

AOC Past Projects

Winter 2024 Projects

Housing, Sprawl, & Municipal Governing

This project hosted a knowledge mobilization session to discuss the impact of spawl on the environment, housing prices, and farming. Concerned about the Greenbelt scandal and increasing rental costs, students invited Stop Sprawl Students to talk about their work and share community strategies to protect the environment in Hamilton and Ontario.

Project Partner: Stop Sprawl Students

View the event poster.

Public Transportation, LRT, & Sustainable Infrastructure

This project explored the intersections of Public Transportation, Sustainable Infrastructure and LRT. Specifically, delving into community perspectives surrounding Hamilton’s LRT project – housing, active transportation, public transit, city building were central components of information sharing among students and residents of Hamilton.

Project Partners: Hamilton Community Benefits Network, McMaster Student’s Union, and Students for McMaster Bike Share

View the event poster.

Protecting Green Spaces, Public Spaces and Communities

This project hosted a community dialogue with McMaster Greenhouse to discuss the importance of protecting green spaces and public spaces. Students focused on the connection between green spaces and social cohesion, health, and community/city building.

Project Partners: McMaster Greenhouse, Department of Biology, MacChangers, Green Venture, and Green Cities Foundation

View the event poster.
View the final presentation slides.

Winter 2023 Projects

Bay Area Restoration Council

This project focused on advancing ideas about how the Bay Area Restoration Council’s Let’s Talk Water tool—focused on the Chedoke Creek watershed as inspired by John Terpstra’s Daylighting Chedoke—can be used as a catalyst for conversation with Hamiltonians about our relationship with the watershed.

Project Partner: Bay Area Restoration Council

Environment Hamilton

This exploration brought forward ideas that Environment Hamilton can advocate for as the City creates new entities—such as a Climate Advisory Committee—to advance climate change work in Hamilton, with a focus on increasing citizen engagement with these processes.

Project Partner: Environment Hamilton

Hamilton Community Benefits Network

This project explored ideas for increasing resident engagement with a focus on identifying creative ways that the City of Hamilton can make municipal budget processes more accessible to residents and thus encourage their engagement in budget decisions that impact the community.

Project Partner: Hamilton Community Benefits Network

Hamilton ACORN

This project advocated for an extreme heat by-law to protect vulnerable tenants. Students identified other municipalities in the United States and globally that have developed extreme heat by-laws in order to make recommendations on what a Hamilton by-law might look like and to identify how various stakeholders might be engaged in this process.

Project Partner: Hamilton ACORN

City of Hamilton

This project aimed to identify actionable priorities following the approval of the Community Energy and Emissions Plan and Climate Change Impact Adaptation Plan in August 2022. It focuses on deepening relationships and engaging with residents, neighborhood groups, and local organizations to identify projects for collaborative community engagement. The goal is to prioritize projects for the Fall 2023 CityLAB Hamilton Semester in Residence program.

Project Partner: Climate Change Initiatives Office, City of Hamilton

Winter 2022 Projects

Project Team 1: Inclusionary Zoning & Transit Oriented Development

Exploring municipal and provincial levers to advance inclusion of affordable housing policies into plans for the Hamilton Light Rail Transit corridor.

This work would align with the Hamilton Community Benefits Network.

Project Partner: Karl Andrus
Students: Amandeep Saini, Hartley Kostrzewa, Summer Akhtar, Ali Siddiqui, Raagavi Ramenthiran

Project Team 2: Intensification and Affordable Housing

Increasing the Spectrum of Housing Choices: Building on outcomes of the Stop the Sprawl movement, this work would focus on identifying levers required to broaden the spectrum of housing options as Hamilton increases density targets. This could also involve exploring opportunities to educate the public on what these options are.

This work would align with Environment Hamilton.

Project Partner: Lynda Lukasik
Students:  Kailey Cutillo, Ardyn Gibbs, Thalia Thompson, Zoe Ullyett, Rachel Carson

Project Team 3: Housing Displacement and Supply

How do we prevent people who are in precarious housing circumstances from being displaced? As housing options in the region become increasingly expensive, how might we preserve affordable housing stock?

This work would align with Acorn Hamilton.

Project Partner: Olivia O’Connor
Students:  Kemi Adesina, Alysha Birdi, Victoria Sawicki, Victoria Iro, Mar Tut, Vithuyan Sugumar

Project Team 4: Amenities and Wrap Around Services

What supports are required for people living in affordable housing units with regards to support services and amenities? What barriers do people face and how might these be removed? What are the unique barriers that specific communities and/or marginalized groups face in relation housing?

This work would align with the YWCA Hamilton and United Way Halton and Hamilton.

Project Partner: Violetta Nikolskaya (YWCA), Kirstin Webb (UWHH)
Students: Bianca Mancino, Sharon Lim, Nicole Schandl, Arden Jacoby, Katelyn Curkan