The SNAP Neighbourhood Model

The Sustainable Neighbourhood Action Program (SNAP) aims to accelerate the implementation of environmental improvements and urban renewal at the neighbourhood scale. It takes an integrated approach to overcome urban retrofit challenges and address a broad range of objectives with locally tailored solutions.

Working with local stakeholders, including residents, businesses, local groups and institutions, the SNAP team of TRCA has identified strategic approaches for advancing resilience at the neighbourhood scale, where implementation ultimately happens:

  • Extending the reach of home renovation programs
  • Advancing integrated infrastructure projects
  • Forging new partnerships for MUR and ICI renewal
  • Strengthening community health, wellbeing and resilience

A Closer Look at the Neighbourhood SNAP Model

We seek to develop action plans to improve the local environment on the neighbourhood scale and build resiliency against climate change by greening local infrastructure and encouraging positive behavior changes among residents.

Black Creek SNAP Harvest the Rain project

Each of the individual SNAP programs is unique to its neighbourhood. However, all SNAPs share a common approach.

The SNAP neighbourhood model includes the following features and outcomes:

  • Neighbourhood scale: focusing on place-based solutions – SNAPs coordinate private and public actions at a neighbourhood scale contributing to a holistic systems strategy. They identify creative retrofit solutions based on the unique environmental and socio-economic context and local community interests.
  • Multi-objective: seeking co-benefits – SNAPs focus on making sustainable changes across five core theme areas which include: stormwater management, water use and conservation, energy, and natural heritage. The SNAPs also seek synergies with a number of complementary themes including health and well-being, transportation, waste management, community identity and culture.

Residents work on the County Court SNAP bioswale project

  • Science-based: predicting measurable outcomes – SNAPs use a science-based process for identifying and evaluating integrated solutions that have measurable impact, provide a business case for implementation and achieve multiple objectives. Performance Monitoring Plans measure long term change and tracking of sustainability targets against local baseline data.
  • Demonstration: showcasing innovation – Quick-start local demonstration projects such as naturalized landscaping, rain harvesting and renewable energy production to bring the plan to life for neighbourhood residents.

Black Creek SNAP neighbourhood residents work on San Romanoway Towers revival project

  • Local networks: engaging a new public – Emphasis on collaboration and building partnerships with various stakeholders throughout the process. Local residents, businesses, community groups and institutions are all engaged in the design of the SNAP and efforts to build local capacity for implementation.
  • Social market research: identifying local motivators – Community-based social marketing research, social innovation approaches and extensive consultation with the local community to identify and understand the barriers and motivations to behavioural change and develop strategies to overcome these barriers.

SNAP Program Overview

cover of SNAP brochure

Five Year Program Review Report

The Five Year Program Review Report provides more information about our SNAP approach, a summary of our findings, innovations we’re seeing in the pilot SNAP neighbourhoods and recommended directions for the future SNAP program.

SNAP program five year review cover page