Creating a resilient community does not mean that local governments and communities need to start from scratch. Resiliency can be integrated into a number of existing plans and activities that communities are developing and implementing, avoiding the need to reinvent the wheel and allowing for resiliency to be built into existing programs and day-to-day activities.
Local governments have the ability to build in resiliency into a number of local plans, including master or comprehensive plans, land use plans, hazard mitigation plans, etc. Though there are a number of ways that communities can accomplish this, one possible way is through the development of a local resiliency framework.
Developing a local resiliency framework involves bringing together a number of community stakeholders including representatives from local government, community organizations, and local businesses to create a vision of what a resilient community looks like. The framework can help communities:
- explore their existing conditions;
- understand what shocks and stresses they are particularly vulnerable to;
- define a vision and goals for the community;
- define strategies and identify priority projects; and
- establish an implementation roadmap.
Goals are broad policy statements that describe the themes that the community wishes to address as a way to meet its vision statement and improve the community’s resiliency. Strategies provide a plan of action to achieve goals, whereas projects are specific actions that carry out the strategy. An example of a strategy may be to use green infrastructure to mitigate stormwater runoff, while a project would be more specific such as installing rain gardens in the local public park.
|Example Community Resiliency Goals|
|Goal 1||Implement regional, long-range, comprehensive planning.|
|Goal 2||Engage and educate county residents to foster awareness, preparedness, self-sufficiency, and a greater sense of community.|
|Goal 3||Develop and implement construction standards that increase energy and resource efficiency and reduce risk.|
|Goal 4||Increase the range of housing options and increase stock of affordable housing through traditional means as well as creative land use, building codes, and measures for innovative housing.|
|Goal 5||Develop and fund a regional, multi-modal transportation network.|
|Goal 6||Manage natural resources through watershed restoration and floodplain and land use planning.|
|Goal 7||Build public-private sector partnerships to support and achieve the community's vision and goals.|
Colorado communities are encouraged to play a role in advancing resiliency throughout the state. Activities they can take to expand the impact of the State’s Resiliency Framework include:
- Plan and coordinate regionally;
- Dedicate staff to resiliency;
- Engage leadership;
- Develop local resiliency strategies;
- Prioritize and implement projects;
- Invest in Resiliency;
- Evaluate and update local land use practices and codes;
- Educate and engage community organizations and members;
- Establish new or support existing networks; and
- Establish peer-to-peer relationships.
In addition to taking local actions, local communities can assist the State in implementing the Resiliency Framework with the following:
- Inform the Colorado Resiliency and Recovery Office and the Colorado Resiliency Working Group of local perspectives;
- Provide examples of lessons learned and replicable best practices;
- Utilize the Framework in the development of their own local resiliency strategies; and
- Serve as ambassadors to expand resiliency knowledge
The Plan and Act sections of the Resource Center will provide guidance and resources for developing a local resiliency framework, integrating resiliency into existing plans, and implementing resiliency projects and programs.