How do you get to work or school? Where do you live? Where do you shop? Many citizens do not realize that these decisions are all impacted by planning.
October has been designated National Community Planning Month by the American Planning Association (APA) as a way to highlight the role of planners and planning in our community. This year’s theme is “New Ideas for America’s Future”; it reflects on how planners help envision the future and address the needs of communities. The month-long celebration is an opportunity to recognize how planning shapes Pine City, and the work of planners and the planning profession in creating communities of lasting value.
Residents of Pine City are invited to celebrate National Community Planning Month in coincidence with events held across the country by attending an open house October 26, 2011 from 5:30 – 6:30 P.M. at City Hall’s Council Chambers (in the Pine Government Center, 315 Main Street S.). At the open house, one can view the vision boards generated at during the most-recent visit by the Minnesota Design Team; as well as meet local planning commissioners and learn how to get involved in local planning efforts. Immediately following, the Planning Commission will hold their regular meeting.
Planning is the process of envisioning, mapping or otherwise conceiving how a community will look, grow, and define itself—its characteristics, attributes, and identity. As our communities continue to change and grow, planners play an important role in ensuring that new developments are designed and built in harmony with existing surroundings. Planners must carefully balance the needs and desires of residents against the challenges presented by growth and change not just in the physical realm, but also economically and socially.
Planning also strives to give residents choices. From the type of home an individual lives in, such as a condominium, apartment, town home or single family, to how an individual gets around, whether taking mass transit, walking, bicycling or driving, planning helps ensure communities address the needs of everyone.
“It’s important to realize that planners are more than just those in the profession,” said Nathan Johnson, Pine City’s city planner. “Our commissioners and many in the community at a grass roots level are making significant contributions to planning for Pine City’s future.”
Johnson said the City will recognize one such individual as “Citizen Planner” at the event. To learn more about National Community Planning Month, visit www.planning.org/ncpm.
The American Planning Association represents more than 44,000 members including professional planners, academics, business leaders, students, and engaged citizens. APA advocates for good planning practices to keep communities safe, healthy, and prosperous.