Kitchener-Waterloo – Today staff will be presenting an update to Kitchener City Council on some of the strategic initiatives the cities of Kitchener and Waterloo have been working on together. The report highlights some of projects staff has undertaken over the past couple of years and previews some of the newer initiatives that will continue throughout 2019.

“There are a number of benefits to working with our local counterparts; not only do our residents benefit from efficiencies and cost savings, but we’re also able to deliver better projects and services by taking advantage of the different experiences and perspectives staff can bring to the table,” said Kitchener Mayor Berry Vrbanovic. “While Waterloo and Kitchener have been formally working together on shared services since 2006, there is recognition that the benefits of these types of collaboration goes beyond just the two cities. In recent years, we’re pleased to see even greater collaboration on a region-wide scale.”

Council heard about staff’s work in the ever-evolving field of stormwater management - a key success factor for climate change adaptation and disaster mitigation; and how the cities were able to realize savings on expenses related to October’s municipal election through their collaboration.

Some of the newer projects underway include information sharing about corporate fleet training programs, for which Kitchener’s fleet operation was recognized as the top mid-sized fleet in North America for 2018; as well as ways to increase the availability of affordable housing through zoning provisions.

“We recognize it’s the quality of services that matter to our residents and I’m proud of the spirit of collaboration between Waterloo and Kitchener when it comes to these shared services initiatives,” said Waterloo Mayor Dave Jaworsky. “We have a long history of working closely with our municipal counterparts across the region in order to maximize our efficiency in how we deliver valuable services to the community and I’m excited about some of the new projects we’ll be tackling together.”

Waterloo City Council received a similar update on Nov. 26, 2018. Information about the full list of initiatives currently underway can be found in the staff report.