Building Community through Joint Planning
May 02, 2014
Tallahassee-Leon County Planning Department Receives National Award - On Tuesday, April 29, the Tallahassee-Leon County Planning Department (TLCPD) received the 2014 National Planning Excellence Award for a Planning Agency from the American Planning Association (APA). As a partnership between the City of Tallahassee and Leon County, the TLCPD has created dynamic planning programs that benefit the whole community and encourage coordination with and assistance to stakeholders.
The Planning Agency award honors the work of a public sector planning agency that has continually produced a program of exceptional work that has elevated awareness about planning.
"This award recognizes everything our Tallahassee-Leon County Planning Department does for the community, but we've only just scratched the surface of what's to come," said Vincent S. Long, Leon County Administrator. "As our team continues to engage citizens as co-creators, we will plan a better community with everyone and for everyone."
In recent years, TLCPD has produced creative plans in specialized areas such as mobility, placemaking and greenways. Their plans have converted areas struggling with redevelopment and functionality issues into aesthetically pleasing public spaces that engage residents and support local businesses.
"While we already know our Planning Department is the best in the country, it is great that the rest of the nation acknowledges it as well," said City Manager Anita Favors Thompson. "The City of Tallahassee is very proud of the staff that helps make places like Gaines Street and Midtown a reality for everyone in our community to enjoy."
TLCPD recognizes the value of creating a "culture of community," welcoming and implementing citizen input. Staff regularly participates in community meetings, workshops and open houses related to planning projects and neighborhood interests. The department actively recruits residents for citizen advisory committees, work groups and focus groups to seek mutually agreeable ideas and solutions. Additionally, TLCPD's newly formed design studio, DesignWorks, offers free of charge, high-level technical assistance on urban design and site design for local property owners.
TLCPD has received numerous awards including a Florida Planning and Zoning Association (FPZA) Award for Outstanding Design for the Urban Design Guidelines (2009) and a Florida American Planning Association Placemaking Award (2011).
TLCPD received the 2014 National Planning Excellence Award for a Planning Agency during APA's National Planning Conference in Atlanta at a special luncheon on Tuesday of this week.
"The partnership between Leon County Government and the City of Tallahassee has really created dynamic planning programs that benefit the whole community," said Wayne Tedder, director of Planning, Land Management, and Community Enhancement (PLACE). "We have produced plans that focus on mobility, placemaking and greenways, and all in the spirit of creating community. It's great to take a few minutes and reflect on our successes, but to also think about the exciting work to come."
TLCPD was featured in the April 2014 issue of APA's Planning Magazine.
For more information, contact the Tallahassee-Leon County Planning Department at (850) 891-6400.
Jon D. Brown, Leon County Community & Media Relations, (850) 606-5300; or Alison Faris, City of Tallahassee Communications, (850) 891-8533