“Cochrane is a ‘Bedroom Community,'” Said No One Ever

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In February, we at SPUR received a phone call from Alex Frazer-Harrison of the Calgary Herald.  He wanted to do a story on Cochrane, for an upcoming issue of the Neighbours insert to the Herald.  Specifically, he wanted to know more about the Cochrane Sustainability Plan.

Alex explained that he was the journalist responsible for stories from the smaller cities and towns surrounding Calgary.  “You know,” he said, “those places referred to as ‘bedroom communities.’”

“But,” Alex went on, “no one EVER refers to Cochrane as a bedroom community.  Cochrane has always managed to maintain its own sense of identity.  And I think that has to do with Cochrane’s Sustainability Plan.”

How right you are, Alex!  Cochrane didn’t just accidentally become a great place with a strong sense of identity.  No, it took planning and hard work, just like everything else in life.

The Cochranites who crafted our Sustainability Plan envisioned a community with a vibrant local economy, a built environment reflecting our Western ranching heritage, well-attended community events, opportunities to pursue arts and skills, and enough room for “everything a community should have.”   (See the Cochrane Sustainability Plan’s Pathways 6, 7, 8, 10, 13.)

These visionaries believed in Cochrane’s future so strongly that they planned for it via the Cochrane Sustainability Plan.  And then they handed off this road map to us, so that we could continue the work. And so far, we are getting very good results — so good in fact, that people in the surrounding area have noticed.

Sure, Calgary’s wonderful cultural opportunities will continue to draw Cochranites.  But combine the economic and cultural goals of the Cochrane Sustainability Plan with beautiful geography and small-town feel, and you quickly realize that Cochrane is far more than a “bedroom community.”  It’s an amazing place to build your life!

~Posted by Sharon MacDonald

Read Alex’s piece here.