Catherine Claveau Fortin (M.Sc. student)

Abitibi-Price Building
Room 0127
Université Laval
2405 rue de la Terrasse
Québec, Canada
G1V 0A6

Phone: (418) 656-2131 ext. 4328

Director : Michel Allard
Co-director : Geneviève Cloutier

Research project
Urban planning in the community of Inukjuak

The rising population, the overcrowded housings, the pressure of urban and economic development and the warming climate are all factors that create the necessity of a better planning of the territory in the communities of Nunavik. In this context, the link between land use planning and permafrost knowledge is strong. A better understanding of the permafrost conditions promotes better decision making and therefore promotes a better adaptation of the communities facing the challenge of climate change.
The main objective of my project is to evaluate how an improved understanding of permafrost conditions can be used in the process of urban planning in northern communities. In this case, this study will be based in the community of Inukjuak. More precisely, this study will analyse how to take advantage of the information, already made available by the CEN on the permafrost condition maps, in order to select the best building foundations, determine the most secure zones for future expansion and orient the planning in a general way. The objectives of this project are: 1) to improve the knowledge of permafrost on the terrain of the community of Inukjuak; 2) to evaluate the actual condition of the buildings on different types of ground; 3) to consult with the community and take into consideration the needs to improve the actual urban environment and the needs for new developments and 4) to elaborate the base of a plan for potential improvement and urban growth taking into account permafrost conditions and climate warming.
In order to reach those different objectives the methodology includes several important methodological steps. The inventory of the actual buildings and the untouched space, the use and the improvement of the most recent permafrost map produced by the CEN (adaptation of the urban environment: the impact on the urban drainage, snow, temperature regime of the ground, etc.) and the evaluation of the physical capacity of the environment (adequacy between different types of foundation and the permafrost properties map).