Thursday, September 15, 2011

AICP Credit - Accessibility Online

Accessibility Online offers online training regarding accessibility. Many of these training opportunities are free and offer AICP Certification Maintenance Credits. A schedule can be found here:

Friday, September 9, 2011

Message from Vision North Texas

I am writing today to ask for assistance from Texas APA for Vision North Texas. I have three requests. Your members have been active with Vision North Texas in the past, so I hope we can continue to benefit from their expertise, imagination and perspectives.

First, I want to invite Texas APA members to help us identify and understand the mixed use centers in North Texas. We’ve developed an online tool that makes it easy to comment on the centers we’ve identified so far, and to suggest new centers. This is important because these mixed use centers are an essential part of a successful 21st century community. They are places where people can live, work, play, shop, learn and take care of other daily needs without driving and parking a car between each destination. Comments are requested by August 10, 2011. You can get involved at:

Second, I’d like to be sure Texas APA members join Vision North Texas at the 2011 Regional Summit on October 28, 2011. The Summit will feature Keynote Speaker Richard Florida, an internationally known author and expert on economic competitiveness. New tools for creating a better future for North Texas will also be released. Information and online registration are at:

Third, I want to ask for your assistance in communication with your members and leaders. Please include links to Vision North Texas on your website (the main address is, talk us up on your blog, and include information on these items in any electronic or print communications you use. The text below is an example you can use or modify to fit your communication methods.

Thanks so much for your past support! I look forward to continuing our work together. Should you need more information on any of these, please email me or call 214-320-1154.

Karen Walz FAICP
Vision North Texas Project Manager

Monday, August 22, 2011

Open Position - Senior Planner

Planning & Development Department - Denton, Texas
Salary: $4,042.13 - $4,959.07 month
Closing Date: September 11, 2011
More information:

Summary of Duties

  • Manages development applications, and perform field inspections to ensure conformance with approved plans, policies and standards.

  • Participates in the City’s multi-disciplinary or multi-departmental development review process relative to the preparation of plans, review of development proposals or other projects.

  • Reviews and processes comprehensive plan amendments, development code amendments, Planned Developments (aka PUD), Master Planned Communities, rezonings, annexations, site plans, and plats.

  • Manages complex planning studies, gathers relevant data, and performs statistical reports and analytical land-use research associated with physical, social & economic issues.

  • Presents reports and other findings to staff, Planning & Zoning Commission, the City Council, the Zoning Board of Adjustment, and serves as liaison to such committees.

  • Leads and coordinates neighborhood meetings, schedules and conducts meetings with advisory boards, commissions, and elected officials as needed.

  • Participates in the development of work priorities and task coordination decisions relative to the Department’s Strategic Plan.

  • Evaluates section performance and provides recommendations for improved efficiency and effectiveness. Performs complex planning tasks as assigned such as conducting reviews consultant proposals.


Bachelor’s degree in Urban Planning or Community and Regional Planning and five (5) years of progressively responsible experience working as a City Planner or in an occupation involving urban/regional planning; or

Master’s degree in Urban Planning or Community and Regional Planning and three (3) years of experience working as a City Planner or in an occupation involving urban/regional planning.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Elected and Appointed Officials Workshop

The 19th Annual Elected and Appointed Officials Workshop will be held on August 29th. Each year, the Midwest Section - Texas Chapter of the American Planning Association hosts a workshop for local Elected and Appointed Officials covering the basics of development regulations, the role officials play in the urban planning process and an overview of challenges and innovations facing planning and development departments within our communities. This year, the Section has put together a panel of speakers that will provide insight and moderate discussion among attendees concerning a variety of topics facing those who deal with the development process. Speaker topics will include:

  • Basics of planning and development review (zoning and subdivision ordinances)
  • Revitalization of commercial corridors
  • Ethics (Roles and Responsibilities of Officials)
  • Land use and the law

The workshop includes a catered lunch and opportunities to meet officials from other communities to network and discuss challenges and opportunities in the development process. See attached brochure and agenda for more details.

When: Monday, August 29, 2011 – 10 am to 4:00 pm

Where: Brookside Convention Center, 1244 Brookside Drive, Hurst

Cost: $25 per person. Please make checks payable to: Midwest Section TX Chapter of APA. Credit cards cannot be accepted for payment at this time. Payment may be made at the event.

RSVP: Email names of attendees by August 25 to Karla Weaver at or 817-608-2376.

Workshop Agenda Workshop Flyer

2011 Texas APA Conference Early Registration Open

Register now for the 2011 Texas APA Conference in Austin. The conference will be held October 5 - 7 at the Hilton Austin. Early registration ends on September 2, 2011. Register early and receive a $25 discount on the full registration fee. Reservations for rooms at the Hilton Austin end on September 16th. For hotel reservations call toll free 1-800-445-8667, or 512-482-8000.

AICP Credit - July 29th Networking Lunch - Follow Up

The Midwest Section's July 29th networking lunch, "Speaking Strategies for Influencing Audiences", has been approved fro 1.0 AICP CM credit. If you attended this lunch, you may now claim your credit through APA's website. An easy way to log your credit is to enter event number 17690 in the search box on the CM Activities page.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Elected and Appointed Officials Workshop

Each year, the Midwest Section - Texas Chapter of the American Planning Association hosts a workshop for local Elected and Appointed Officials covering the basics of development regulations, the role officials play in the urban planning process and an overview of challenges and innovations facing planning and development departments within our communities. This year, the Section has put together a panel of speakers that will provide insight and moderate discussion among attendees concerning a variety of topics facing those who deal with the development process. Speaker topics will include:
  • Nuts and Bolts of Development Regulations (Zoning and Subdivision Ordinances)
  • Ethics (Roles and Responsibilities of Officials)
  • Legal Responsibilities
  • Revitalization of Commercial Corridors
The workshop includes a catered lunch, presentation materials and opportunities to meet officials from other communities to network and discuss challenges and opportunities in the development process.

A flyer with more details will be posted very soon.

When: Monday, August 29, 2011 - 10 am to 4 pm
Where: Brookside Convention Center, 1244 Brookside Drive, Hurst
Cost: $25.00 per person
Questions: Clayton Husband, AICP at or 817-459-6668

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Officer Nominations for 2011-2013

In accordance with the Midwest Section bylaws, the Nominating Committee recommends the following candidates for the ballot for officer elections for 2011-2013. The terms of office for all elected officers is two years, beginning at the conclusion of the annual fall meeting of APA Texas in odd numbered years.

Director-Elect: Douglas McDonald, AICP
Treasurer: Richard Schell, AICP
Secretary: Clayton Husband, AICP
Communications Coordinator: Clayton Comstock, AICP

Additional candidates may be placed upon the official ballot following the submission of a petition containing the signatures of at least ten or more of the qualified Section Members received by the Director by August 18, after which nominations will be closed. Petitions may be emailed to

Monday, August 1, 2011

Open position - Community Development Director, City of Seabrook

The City of Seabrook, Texas is seeking a Community Development Director. This newly reorganized position will administer the City’s development processes while also guiding the city’s Economic Development functions. The Building Inspection, Permit and Code Enforcement functions are also overseen by this position. Applications will be accepted until August 10, 2011.

All inquiries regarding this process should be directed to the consultant who is working with the City of Seabrook. Applications should be submitted electronically.

Ron Holifield
Strategic Government Resources
P.O. Box 1642, Keller, TX 76244

Monday, July 25, 2011

Midwest Section Bylaws Election

Thanks to everyone that voted in the election to review the bylaws for the Section. The revised bylaws were approved by a unanimous vote. A copy is available here.

If you have any questions about the bylaws, please email Clayton Husband, AICP or call 817-459-6668.

2011 Texas APA Awards Deadline Extended

For those communities seeking to nominate plans, projects and ordinances for consideration of the 2011 Texas APA Awards the deadline for submittal has been extended to July 30, 2011. The original deadline published with the nomination form was last week, however the State website now places the date at the end of this week. Remember to submit 10 copies of your nomination packet. Good Luck!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Networking Luncheon - Speaking Strategies for Influencing Audiences

Please join us as we welcome Michael Putnam from the University of Texas, Arlington, School of Communication for a networking lunch presentation to learn tips and strategies for more effective communication. In order to reach our audience we have to be conscious of how we organize our message, careful of the selection of the kind of content or substance we build into it, and make it come alive with effective verbal and nonverbal delivery skills. Reasoning Strategies, Persuasive Appeals, and Delivery Techniques will be discussed and are tools than can help us present more effectively to the public, various boards and committees, and elected officials.

When: Friday, July 29, 2011 - 11:30am Registration, Noon to 1pm presentation.
Where: Intermodal Transportation Center, 1001 Jones St. Downtown Fort Worth
Cost: $15 APA Members - $20 nonmembers (includes box lunch)
RSVP: Karla Weaver at or 817-608-2376
AICP: CM Credits have been requested.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Midwest Section Texas APA Board Meeting

A Board Meeting of the Midwest Section - Texas APA will be held on Tuesday July 26th at 4:00pm. The meeting will be held at Panera Bread, 1409 N Collins St, Arlington TX. For more information contact Director, Amanda Wilson, AICP

Open Position - Transportation Planner I/II FTA Program Administration

The Transportation Department of the North Central Texas Council of Governments is seeking a qualified individual to assist the Regional Transit Coordination and Operations Team in administering, managing, and overseeing Federal Transit Administration programs, including the Urbanized Area Formula Program, Job Access/Reverse Commute Program, and New Freedom Program. These programs are complex due to the type and number of projects funded, the multitude of customers served, coordination of a variety of transit needs, and the involvement of multiple jurisdictions.

This position will provide assistance throughout the life cycle of these programs and projects, from grant approval through project implementation leading to grant closeout. This individual will assist in the review, analysis, and evaluation of the overall direction and effectiveness of project and program oversight. Applicants wishing to be considered for this position should apply online. To be considered for any other NCTCOG position that may currently be open, applicants need to apply online separately for those postings. All submittals should include a cover letter summarizing work experience, as well as a current resume.

Required Experience

  • Bachelor’s degree in analytical, quantitative methods
  • At least one year of related experience
  • Previous experience with Federal Transit Administration programs desired
Salary: Starting at $42,077.00 per year

Job Location: Arlington, TX, US

Position Type: Full-Time/Regular

Website: NCTCOG Job Application

Open Position - Transportation Planner I/II Sustainable Development

The Transportation Department of the North Central Texas Council of Governments is increasing its staff and currently seeking a Transportation Planner I or II in Sustainable Development, specifically in the areas of Bicycle and Pedestrian Coordination and Transit-Oriented Development Planning.

This position will conduct activities related to multi-modal corridor studies, bicycle/pedestrian studies, parking analysis, traffic calming, rail and tranist project, Context Sensitive Design, land-use redevelopment projects, urban design/landscaping, and Complete Streets. Applicants wishing to be considered for this position should apply online. All submittals should include a cover letter summarizing work experience, as well as a current resume.

Required Experience
  • Bachelor's degree in analytical, quantitative methods such as urban/transportation planning, design or landscape architecture or other related field of study.
  • At least one year of related experience.
  • Experience using Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and developing layers and shapefiles.
  • Experience working with public and elected officials desired.
Salary: Starting at $39,324 or $43,077 per year.
Job Location: Arlington, TX
Position Type: Full-Time/Regular

Open Position - Transit System Planner - Fort Worth Transportation Authority

The T, a public transportation system, is currently seeking a Transit System Planner to perform a variety of complex transit planning development activities under the general supervision of the Director of Planning. Incumbent will assist or lead in the development of transit-related research and planning studies including the planning of capital rail and bus transit projects. Incumbent will participate in other comprehensive, mid-and long-range regional transit planning projects such as Transit Oriented Development (TOD) planning, and assist in the implementation of fixed-route bus service changes. Must be able to demonstrate immediate proficiency in Excel, Microsoft Word, ArcView, and project management.

The successful candidate must possess a Bachelor's Degree in Urban/City & Regional Planning, Geography, Business, or a closely related field. Masters degree, AICP and/or PMP a plus. Applicant must have five + years experience in transit planning and/or in urban or city planning with experience managing the planning of complex capital projects.

Starting salary range: $54,019 - $64,524. Benefits include medical, dental, a 457b plan with 3-6% company contribution, tuition reimbursement program, scholarship program for employees and their dependents, an onsite wellness center, employer paid life insurance, long term care, and long term disability. THIS POSITION WILL CLOSE ON JULY 25, 2011.

Applicants must apply online at . You must have an email address to apply online. A kiosk in Human Resources is available Monday - Friday from 8:30pm-4:00pm in Human Resources at the Fort Worth Transportation Authority, 1600 East Lancaster, Fort Worth, TX 76102.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

CNU NTX Event: The Architecture of Community

How often do citizens, city officials, and other decision-makers find confusion instead of clarity when discussing urban design? How can we attempt to help guide neighborhoods, towns, and cities and overcome the failures of the past, address current issues, and anticipate the needs of the future when we lack of a common language on urban design?

CNU North Texas along with USGBC, The Dallas Center for Architecture, ULI, and The Dallas Architecture Forum presents two lectures by Dhiru Thadani and Anne Ricker followed by a panel discussion on creating a sense of community through the built environment.

July 28, 2011 from 1p-5p at the Dallas Center for Architecture

Registation is $75 at

Continuing Education Credit available for USGBC, CNU, AIA, and AICP members

Dhiru Thadani

Architect, urban designer, and author Dhiru Thadani will discuss and illustrate solutions found in the urban paradigm of the built environment to prescriptively solve several current global crises. He will argue the need for a common design language, which is the subject of his book, The Language of Towns & Cities: A Visual Dictionary -- Book signing to follow event.

Anne Ricker

Anne Ricker is a member and speaker for the Urban Land Institute, International Downtown Association and American Planning Association. With extensive experience in real estate market analysis, urban redevelopment and vision building for public and private sector clients, Anne focuses on assisting communities and the investors within them by preparing strategies for development and redevelopment and identifying partner roles and resources. Anne is a founding principal with consulting firm Ricker Cunningham.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Open Position - Planning Project Manager I (#3234) - City of Arlington


$4,645 - $5,806 per month depending on experience. Full-Time position available - M-F 8am to 5pm.

Under general direction, leads and manages the activities of planning teams responsible for performing planning assignments such as long-range plans and studies and current planning activities, including preparing and presenting staff reports, ordinance revisions and providing technical planning and zoning assistance to the public and city departments. Bachelor's Degree in urban and regional planning, architecture, or related fields plus two (2) years related experience. Prefer a Master's Degree in related field. AICP preferred. Must successfully complete a pre-employment screen including criminal background check.

For more information and to apply please visit The City of Arlington is proud to be EOE.

2012 Conference Logo Designs Wanted

The 2012 Texas APA Conference Committee is seeking your ideas and submissions for the design of the logo for the 2012 Texas APA Conference (to be held in downtown Fort Worth).

The theme for the conference is "The New Frontier", generally focusing on the concept of "Texas Then & Now" as it relates to planning. The conference logo will be used on a variety of materials, from the conference program and banners to session signage, shirts and giveaway items. The files available to the right have some sample logos from previous conferences.

Some quick parameters for designing the logo:

Needs to be scalable and recognizable at different scales for printing/use on giveaways and materials.

Needs to be usable in b/w or two-color printing as well as four color printing (would prefer no gradient fills).

Needs to be relevant to Fort Worth area - planning as well as thematic.

If you have further questions or want to submit a logo design for consideration, please contact Stephen Cook at or Lyndsay Mitchell at

Friday, June 24, 2011

82nd Texas Legislature Wrap-Up POSTPONED

Please join us as we welcome Cathy Cunningham of Boyle and Lowry, Jonathon Bazan of the City of Irving and Amanda Wilson of NCTCOG for a networking lunch to learn about how the 82nd Texas Legislature will affect planners.

Cathy and Jonathon will provide a brief overview of the legislative process and political happenings during the session. In addition, they will provide an update on the 82nd Texas Legislature regular and special sessions and cover issues related to the planning profession. Amanda will provide an update on how transportation issues were addressed during the session. Speakers will also discuss issues that may return during future legislative sessions.

When: POSTPONED. Due to a speaker scheduling conflict, this session will be rescheduled for September. Registration 11:30am - noon, presentation: noon-1:30pm.
Where: Transportation Council Room - North Central Texas Council of Governments
Cost: $10.00 APA Members / $15 non-members. Box lunch from Jason's Deli included
RSVP: Amanda Wilson at or 817-695-9284
AICP: CM Legal credits have been requested. Approval is pending.

GIS Spatial Analysis Workshop

This three day/four-hour workshop series provides an overview of applied spatial pattern analysis using GIS and SPSS. The selected readings and the replication datasets may also be of interest in itself for some participants. The workshop is FREE for students. The course is oriented to spatial analysis for students and others committed to applied research in spatial analysis. Attendees, by replication, will develop confidence to scan different literature on analytical procedures or specific computing routines. This is a free, hands-on workshop. Please see the linked flyer.

These workshops will cover the following areas:
Monday: Spatial Autocorrelation (Concepts & Examples; Excercises & Case Studies)
Tuesday: Spatial Autocorrelation (Continuation) Identification & Visualization of Univariate and Multivariate Outliers
Wednesday: Classification & Visualization of Georeferenced Information and Intro to Spatial Regression.

When: Monday - Wednesday, June 27-29, 2011 6:00pm to 10:00pm
Where: Room UH 004 at University Hall, UT-Arlington
Cost: Free for students
RSVP: Majorie Dick at or 817-272-3301
INFO: Ard Anjomani at

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Midwest Section Bylaws Election

Below is the link to the electronic ballot for the proposed revisions to the Midwest Section bylaws. The Section Executive Board has been working on an overhaul of our bylaws for the past year. Some of the revisions are needed to update language to how the Section currently does business, and many other changes were made to comply with mandates from the Chapter Board.
A copy of the proposed bylaws is linked - both a clean copy and a tracked-changes version. A general summary of the proposed changes is below.

The organization and section numbering is changed. Bylaws are considered “amended and restated”.

Article II Purpose. This section was expanded to better describe the mission of the Section.

Article III Membership. Members are now classified as “Section Members” rather than “Regular Members”. The section regarding termination of membership is deleted.

Article IV Fiscal Administration. The fiscal year was changed from the calendar year to the same fiscal year calendar used by the Texas Chapter. Budget and financial reporting requirements were amended to be consistent with directives from the Texas Chapter. The portions of this section regarding special assessments, vouchers and restrictions and dissolution were deleted.

Article V Elected Officers, Appointed Officers and Executive Board. Terms of office were expanded to two years as directed by the Texas Chapter. The position of “newsletter editor” is changed to “communications coordinator” to reflect expanded use of the internet and social networking tools. The professional development officer and student representative are moved from ex-officio positions to executive board positions. Duties of the officers is expanded to reflect actual duties and coincide with Texas Chapter position duties. Quorum is expanded from 3 to 4 board members.

Article VI Elections and Voting. The Section director is charged with administering elections. A specific election process and detailed calendar are added. Allowances added for electronic or written ballots. Officers assume elected position at the conclusion of the Chapter conference every October in odd-numbered year (instead of January each year) as directed by the Texas Chapter. A process is added to fill vacancies on the executive board should the need arise.

Article VII Meetings. Executive board meetings must be noticed via electronic or other means at least 15 days prior to the meeting, as directed by the Texas Chapter.

Article VIII Committees. Three standing committees are created to further Section business – programs committee, awards committee and conference planning committee. Members of these committees are appointed by the Section Director.

Article IX Amendment of Bylaws. Expanded the section related to the procedures for the amendment of the bylaws.

Access the ballot:

Friday, June 17, 2011

Open Position - Assistant City Planner - City of Benbrook

Assistant City Planner - Assists the City Planner is administering the zoning, subdivision and development regulations for the City. Assists in the preparation of Comprehensive Plan elements and other special projects. Performs other related duties as required. Download job description to the right for full details.

Applications are available from and returnable to: Personnel Department, 911 Winscott Road, Benbrook, Texas 76126. Application deadline 4:00 p.m. Thursday, July 7, 2011.

Midwest Section Officer Elections

In the event the revisions to the Section bylaws are approved, officer elections will need to occur this September. Newly-elected individuals would take office at the conclusion of the Chapter conference in October, and all positions would be 2-year terms. The Section Board is seeking members interested in running for an officer position. The positions up for election are Director-Elect, Treasurer, Secretary, and Communications Coordinator (formerly Newsletter Editor). If you are interested in running for one of these positions or have any questions please email any of the following people on the Nominating Committee: Curvie Hawkins, AICP, Amanda Wilson, AICP or Richard Schell, AICP.

Midwest Section Bylaws Election

Next week, (beginning June 20) all Section Members will receive a copy of the proposed revisions to the Midwest Section bylaws and a link to the electronic ballot. The Section Executive Board has been working on an overhaul of our bylaws for the past year. Some of the revisions are needed to update language to how the Section currently does business and many other changes were made to comply with mandates from the Chapter Board. A more detailed explanation will be provided in the upcoming email. If you have immediate questions, email Clayton Husband, AICP or call 817-459-6668.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Transportation Challenges at Arlington Highlands

Hosted by the Transportation and Developmnet Institute of the Fort Worth ASCE chapter, hear a presentation by Jason Grimm, P.E., with the City of Arlington, presenting on the Arlington Highlands retail development and the transportation successes and challenges associated with that development.

When: Thursday, June 23, 2011, 12 p.m. - 1 p.m.
Where: Fort Worth ITC - 1001 Jones Street - Downtown Fort Worth
Cost: $10.00, light lunch included
RSVP: June 17 to
More Info: Brett Schock at or 817-987-4912

Central Texas Livability Summit

Hosted by CAMPO, the Texas Transportation Institute and the Federal Highway Administration, the Central Texas Livability Summit is a free workshop discussing best practices for transformative projects in Austin and Central Texas. A detailed agenda and RSVP form is available for download to the right.

When: Thursday, July 14, 2011 - 8:30 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Where: Austin City Hall - 301 W 2nd St - Austin, TX 78701
Cost: Free
More Info: Kirk D. Fauver at

Thursday, June 2, 2011

The T Holds E. Lancaster Enhanced Bus Corridor Open House Meetings June 8 and 9

Improved service with 60-foot buses, faster travel, more rider amenities and technology to start this fall.

FORT WORTH (June 2, 2011) - The T (Fort Worth Transportation Authority) will hold open house meetings to give neighborhood residents and riders along East Lancaster Avenue a preview of the new enhanced bus corridor and related bus service improvements scheduled to begin operation this fall.

The meetings will be on Wednesday, June 8, from noon to 1 p.m. at The T's headquarters on 1600 E. Lancaster Ave. 76102 and Thursday, June 9 from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Handley United Methodist Church on 2929 Forest Ave. 76112. They will include a presentation and a question and answer period.

"Enhanced bus corridors are a major project of The T's long -range strategic plan to make bus service along its busiest corridors, faster, more efficient, with more passenger amenities and more advanced technology," said Dick Ruddell, president of The T. "The goal of such corridors is to provide better public transportation experiences for the customer both at the stops and in the vehicles," Rudder said.

East Lancaster Avenue will be the first enhanced bus corridor in The T's service area. The Lancaster Avenue corridor that operates from Handley to the downtown Intermodal Transportation Center is the most heavily traveled corridor in The T's bus system.

Major improvements along enhanced bus corridors generally include transit signal priority for more immediate access through traffic signals at intersections to improve travel time; higher level passenger amenities at stops and shelters; 60-foot low floor buses to accommodate greater passenger loads; improved passenger information, more advanced technology, and a distinctive brand that differentiates the corridor from other bus service routes. The T's E. Lancaster enhanced bus corridor will result in changes to Route 2 and the addition of a new connecting bus route.

For more information, contact The T at 817-215-8600 or visit

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Texas LID Workshops: DFW Region

Presented by the Center for Research in Water Resources & the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, these FREE workshops will offer an in-depth introduction to the economic benefits, ecological goals, planning techniques, design principles, analytical methodologies, and implementation strategies for monitoring results of the innovative LID technology for stormwater management.

Three national stormwater and LID experts will be speaking: Mr. Larry S. Coffman, Dr. Michael Barrett and Mr. David Dods. National LID expert Mr. Coffman has over 36 years of experience in stormwater management and is considered the nation's foremost expert on LID technologies and programs. Dr. Barrett has been a leader in stormwater and LID research for many years, focusing recently on pervious pavements and pollutant uptake by plants and media in biofiltration systems. Mr. Dods is a senior environmental engineer with the URS Corporation and leads the 10,000 Rain Gardens Initiative in Kansas City.

The D/FW Region workshop will discuss how LID can help address impairments in the Upper and West Forks of the Trinity River. A detailed agenda and flyer are linked.

When: Wednesday - Thursday, May 11-12, 2011 8 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Where: Arlington City Hall
Cost: Free
More Info: Julia Raish at
AICP: CM Credits have been requested. Approval is pending.

Midwest Section Hosting the 2012 Texas APA Conference

The Midwest Section is the official host of the 2012 Texas APA conference, which will be held October 3-5, 2012 at the Worthington Hotel in downtown Fort Worth. In conjunction with the State Chapter, the Midwest Section has created a conference planning committee to coordinate many of the local aspects of the conference. Subcommittees were created to handle specific tasks such as programs, Planning Commissioner short course, mobile workshops, social events, publicity, transportation, on-site volunteers and student activities.

If you are interested in volunteering for a conference subcommittee or have general questions about the conference, please call or email one of the following conference committee co-chairs:

Clayton Husband - 817-459-6668 or
Wendy Shabay - 817-735-7259 or
Craig Sykora - 214-289-8440 or

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

DFW Young Planners Group Meeting

Join your fellow young planners for drinks, appetizers, and networking at three premier Southlake Town Square restaurants. Tour the Square and hear its story from developer Frank Bliss, President of Cooper & Stebbins. Learn about the public-private partnerships, urban design, and other factors that make a suburban downtown successful.

When: Monday, May 16, 2011 - 6:00pm to 8:00pm
Where: Southlake Town Center
Cost: Free
RSVP: Clayton Comstock at or via Facebook
More Info: Craig Sykora at

Download Postcard

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Open Position - Planning Intern - City of Keller

Salary/Pay Rate: $11.00/hr

Posted Date: 4/5/2011

Deadline to Apply: 4/15/2011

Hours: Flexible - 19 hours per week between Monday-Friday 8am - 5pm.

Job Summary: The Planning Intern position will provide customer service (telephone, emails, and "walk-ins"); assist with Planning and Zoning Commission and City Council packet preperation; participate in project review meetings and development meetings; maintaining and enhancing our department's web pages; performing research for special studies, policies, and potential ordinace amendments; and scanning of site plans, plats, and zoning cases into Laserfiche (the City's electronic document management system.) The Planning intern position also provides graphic arts, database, and web page assistance to the Economic Development department.

Minimum Requirements: Bachelor's or Master's degree in Planning, Urban Development, or related field, or currently pursuing a Bachelor's or Master's degree in Planning, Urban Development, or related field. Good oral/written communication skills. Interact with customers professionally and provide good customer service.

City of Keller HR Department
1100 Bear Creek Pkwy - 2nd Floor
Keller, TX 76248

Mail to: PO Box 770, Keller TX 76244 Attn: HR

Friday, April 1, 2011

Open Position - Senior Planner - City of North Richland Hills

Senior Planner (11-015-040111A)

Department: Planning and Development Salary: $51,770-$64,713/yr DOQ

Opening Date: 4/1/2011

Closing Date: Open Until Filled

Job Summary: The purpose of this position is the coordination of community-wide development projects, maintenance of the Comprehensive Plan, and the implementation of the Zoning Ordinance. Emphasis on infill and redevelopment with a special focus on coordinating new development requests in the Home Town new urbanist district and Smithfield and Iron Horse transit oriented development districts. This is accomplished by providing information to the general public and property developers regarding planning, land use, zoning and platting issues; and coordinating the research, development and presentation of various planning research projects. Other duties include coodinating revisions to the Zoning, Sign, and Landscape Ordinances; providing support for the Planning and Zoning Commission, Zoning Board of Adjustment and City Council meetings; and interacting with other City employees and citizens. This position does not provide direction to other employees and reports to the Director of Planning and Development. REQUIRES: Bachelor's degree in urban/regional planning or other related discipline; five to seven years municipal planning experience; valid Texas Class C Drivers License; Certification in American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP) and Congress of New Urbanism (CNU-A) - Accredited.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Open Position - Gas Well Coordinator #3159 - City of Arlington

This position will close on April 11, 2011.

$4,529 - $5,661 per month depending on experience. Full-Time position available - M-F 8am to 5pm. Under general direction responsible for performing gas well site inspection for the purpose of issuing gas well and drilling productions permits, perform other technical gas well inspections to ensure compliance with the gas well ordinance, other regulations and ordinances, and city zoning code during the productive life of gas wells; to provide information and assistance to developers, contractors and the general public regarding gas wells, resolve issues relating to building or gas well code compliance; and to perform a variety of technical tasks in the assigned area of responsibility. Bachelor's degree in Petroleum Engineering, Geology, Physical or Earth Sciences, or a related discipline plus 2 years experience in gas exploration, drilling and production. Possession of a valid Texas Operator's License, required.

For more information and to apply, please visit The City of Arlington is proude to be an EOE.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Open Position - Trip Planner Coordinator - Fort Worth Transportation Authority

Fort Worth Transportation Authority has an immediate opening for a Trip Planner Coordinator to work under the general supervision of the Director of Planning. This position will assist in advancing the development of transit information and trip planning tools for The T and will monitor the following geographic information including all necessary attributes:route patterns, bus stop locations, and street segments throughout the service area.

Oversee the maintenance and analysis of ridership data that is collected via surveys and automatic passenger counters to determine optimal placement of stops, transfer points and routes. Coordinate with the Planning, Operations, and MITS (Paratransit) departments to respond to request for information or database updating. Assist in the development design, creation and maintenance of databases, maps, and other related projects. Conduct mapping research in the field and in the office. Developing and maintaining database of bus stop signs and amenities using ArcGIS, Arcview, MS Access, MS Excel, Trapeze and SPSS software; administering GPS programs; and planning short and long range projects. Transportation planning and scheduling principles is preferred.

REQUIREMENTS: BS in Information Technology, Database Management, Geographic Information Systems or a related discipline and completion of a graduate level degree in Urban Planning or IT related field of study is preferred. Working towards a graduate level degree in these fields of study will also be considered. The starting salary range is between $22.36 and $33.54 with a maximum of 29 hours per week.
How to apply: through April 8, 2011.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Open Position - City of Arlington Planning Project Manager II

This position will close on April 8, 2011.
$5,361 - $6,701 per month depending on experience. Full -Time position available - M-F 8am to 5pm. Under nominal direction, oversees and directs the activities of other planning staff responsible for performing planning assignments, and acts as project manager and project coordinator on long-range plans and studies and current planning activities, including negotiating professional service agreements, monitoring consultant contracts, preparing and presenting staff reports and ordinance revisions and providing technical planning and zoning assistance to the public and city departments. Bachelor's Degree in urban and regional planning, geography/GIS, political science/public administration, architecture, environmental science, landscape architecture, business or related field plus six (6) years related experience including one (1) year progressively responsible supervisory experience; or a Master's Degree in urban and regional planning, geography/GIS, political science/public administration, architecture, environmental science, landscape architecture, business, or related field and four years related experience including one (1) year progressively responsible supervisory experience. AICP required within two (2) years of employment. Must successfully complete pre-employment screen including criminal background check.

For more information and to apply please visit The City of Arlington is proud to be EOE.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

2012 Texas APA Conference Committees

The Midwest Section is the official host of the 2012 Texas APA Conference, which will be held in October 2012 at the Worthington Hotel in downtown Fort Worth. In conjunction with the State Chapter, the Midwest Section is seeking volunteers interested in serving on the conference planning committee. There are many different aspects of the conference that the Section will be in charge of handling. During the last conference in 2005, some of those included social events, publicity, programs, mobile workshops, budget, sponsors and exhibitors, transportation and on-site volunteers.

An organizational meeting will be scheduled in late April. If you are interested in volunteering for a conference committee, please call or email one of the following people:

Clayton Husband - 817.459.6668 or
Wendy Shabay - 817.735.7259 or

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Utah APA Offers Free Monthly Planning Webcasts for APA Members

The Utah Chapter of APA has a website which offers registration for free online webcasts in order to pursue AICP CM Credits. The 2011 schedule is active and has many sessions. You must register for each one you actively participate in to gain credit for the webcast. More information is available from the website:

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Awards Presented at Annual Section Banquet

The 2010 Midwest Section Awards Banquet was held at The Ashton Hotel in downtown Fort Worth on January 14, 2011. Section members enjoyed a cocktail reception and dinner with friends and colleagues. As an added treat, caricaturist Ty Walls entertained guests with flattering portraits of themselves.

The awards review committee had an exciting and challenging time reviewing all the nominations. The committee presented awards honoring several projects: two planning project awards, a student planning project award, a planning advocate award, and one special award.

Thanks to the awards committee members for taking time during the holidays to review and discuss the submittals: Clayton Comstock, City of Southlake; Douglas McDonald, City of Keller; and Clayton Husband, City of Arlington.

Planning Advocate

Arlington Urban Design Center

The City of Arlington is experiencing a significant amount of development activity, primarily due to the opening of the new Cowboys Stadium, the success of the Texas Rangers, the expansion of the University of Texas at Arlington, and the selection of Arlington as the site for Super Bowl 2011. In order to capitalize on this surge of reinvestment, the City’s Community Development and Planning Department collaborated with the University of Texas at Arlington (UTA) School of Urban and Public Affairs to create a unique planning studio staffed with six graduate students studying architecture, landscaping, and urban planning. This joint effort, called the Arlington Urban Design Center, creates public awareness about the importance of sustainable urban design and its impact on quality of life, the environment, and economic investment; and provides high-quality urban design solutions at no cost to its clients.

During its first year, the Center completed approximately 30 projects. The City’s and University’s financial commitment, along with $46,500 in grant funding and private donations, allows staff to provide services free of charge. The ability of the students to use their personal and school equipment and software significantly reduces the amount of investment needed for the program and allows the Center to function with very low overhead. In addition, Center staff educates users about sustainable development techniques such as solar energy, porous paving, rain harvesting, and energy efficient building materials.

The program is distinctive in that it provides clients with direct access to professional design staff and guidance on development proposals, creating a range of mutually beneficial outcomes:

  • Students benefit extensively from real project experience.
  • New students are attracted to UTA because of the unique, hands-on opportunity to be part of a successful Design Center.
  • City departments are able to utilize students’ skill sets for public projects and studies, and
  • Businesses, neighborhoods, and residents benefit from the availability of free professional services.

The Arlington Urban Design Center provides a model to follow for creative collaboration with local partners, and has become a strong advocate for how the planning process shapes the physical, social and economic environment of Arlington.

Planning Project

Imagine Burleson: Roadmap to 2030

The City of Burleson, with the help of Freese and Nichols, prepared a dynamic Comprehensive Plan that set goals to preserve the City’s history and natural resources while facilitating growth management and encouraging sustainable, desirable development. From the visioning phase to its adoption and current implementation, the goal was to facilitate an inclusive process and to develop a plan that would preserve the past, realize current potential and guide the future.

The project team implemented a progressive and thorough public participation program. Overwhelming buy-in for the Plan was achieved through a series of open houses, town hall meetings, stakeholder meetings, advertising, and high school and college student participation. The City used its resident alert system to advertise public meetings, drawing in citizens that may not have normally participated. With two colleges located in Burleson, educational organizations and college students were included in the process, revealing the desire to locate student housing in both the campus district and historic downtown.

Six key core values emerged from diverse and widespread public input: land use, complete streets, community enhancement, environmental sustainability, economic diversification, and urban design. Goals and strategies were developed that address current issues and future initiatives such as transit, livable streets, strong neighborhoods, and reinvestment into the community.

Since the Plan was adopted in April 2010, 21 associated projects have been initiated, including 14 completed code amendments. Some of these accomplishments include:

  • Seeking HUD grants for redevelopment in Old Town
  • Creating a mobility plan and context sensitive solutions manual
  • Developing a Land Conservation Program to preserve open space and rural character
  • Promoting sustainable development and urban design in a new transit oriented development district, the Interstate 35 and Highway 174 corridors, and High Point Business Park; and
  • Drafting the city’s first lighting and night sky ordinance

With wide support from City leaders, Burleson ISD, the Burleson Area Chamber of Commerce and the private development community, Imagine Burleson will have a significant impact on livability for the community at every stage of life, and will become a source for best practices in the North Texas region.

Planning Project

North Texas 2050

Vision North Texas is a private, public and academic partnership created to serve as a forum for dialogue and action on these important issues. Beginning with a regional visioning workshop in 2005, the partnership has involved people from all parts of the 16-county area surrounding Fort Worth and Dallas in the consideration of choices for the region’s future.

The North Texas 2050 document is the first policy document that integrates recommendations for typical planning issues – land use, transportation, housing, water infrastructure and parks – at the scale of the 12,800 square mile region. It also incorporates health, education, climate resilience and economic development. This comprehensive and coordinated approach means the entities responsible for all these investments can share North Texas 2050 so their decisions all support a sustainable preferred future.

Contained in the document are a set of policy recommendations and an action package with specific priority action items that begins to implement the shared vision of the region. The plan identified a list of ‘top 20’ priority actions that should be implemented in 2010. The policies and action tools can be used by cities, developers, neighborhood groups and other individual decision-makers as they make their own investments. It uses a set of five geographic policy areas and eight investment areas to organize these recommendations so they relate to the unique characteristics and needs of each place within North Texas. The result is sustainability built into the existing institutional fabric of the region.

Currently members of the Vision North Texas partnership are meeting with various local city councils, planning groups, and private developers to continue outreach efforts for the project. Cities such as Southlake, Fort Worth and Midlothian have already begun using the specific policy recommendations contained in North Texas 2050 in their own local land use policies and development regulations.

Through the work of Vision North Texas, a new vision for the future has emerged that accommodates anticipated growth and offers a higher quality of life and a better future. The North Texas 2050 document presents this preferred future and proposes action to make it a reality.

Student Planning Project

Vidor Comprehensive Land Use Plan

Each year the Midwest Section honors a student project that makes a significant contribution to the planning profession. The city and regional planning program at the University of Texas at Arlington provides opportunities for research on issues of concern to local governments, public agencies and nonprofit organizations in a wide range of areas. The research is conducted by graduate students working under the supervision of a qualified professor. There are scores of graduates of the UTA program working in the Arlington-Fort Worth area.

The City of Vidor approached the University to seek assistance with creating a comprehensive land use plan as a precursor to enacting the city’s first zoning ordinance. A team of seven graduate students, under the supervision of Dr. Ard Anjomani, began the project in January 2010, and presented the plan to the Mayor, City Council, and citizens of Vidor in October 2010. The plan has since been adopted unanimously by the City Council.

Despite previous attempts, the City of Vidor had never had a zoning ordinance. Historically, the city has managed land use through deed restrictions and covenants. This created a fragmented built environment, with undesired land uses mixed within existing residential neighborhoods. Additionally, Vidor has experienced two hurricane strikes (Rita and Ike) in the last several years, which greatly affected the city.

The planning process also focused on developing a planning vision and population and employment growth scenarios for Vidor, not simply a template for creating a zoning ordinance. The project team used aerial images, on‐site observations, and Orange County Appraisal District data to establish a base map of natural and built features, land uses, and existing infrastructure. Students researched and analyzed population, employment, housing, and other data for Vidor, Orange County, and the southeast Texas region.

Public input included a day‐long presentation and work session in May 2010. This included presentation of a “State of the Community Report”, a visioning and goal setting session, and an interactive map exercise. The results of this meeting validated background data and identified a preferred growth scenario. The vision statement, planning goals, and land use policies were reviewed and revised over time in consultation with City staff and elected officials in order to finalize the plan.

The planning document itself utilizes descriptive imagery, figures, and tables. In addition, the plan makes extensive use of GIS mapping capabilities. The report concludes with a discussion of suggested next steps for Vidor to implement land use regulation in conformance with the new plan. Extensive appendices provide background information and detailed supporting analysis.

These students distinguished themselves in their contributions to the profession and to the city and regional planning program at UTA.

Director Recognition

Each year the awards committee recognizes the outgoing director for their service and dedication as Director of the Midwest Section, and for representing the Section on Texas Chapter board. Being director is a three-year commitment of planning programs and events, managing all activities of the section, attending state board meetings, and ultimately, serving as advisor to the Board. As all past directors can attest to, it’s the final duty as advisor that is most satisfying, as all those other duties are over with.

The awards committee was pleased to recognize Curvie Hawkins for his service as director of the Midwest Section for 2010.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Open Position - Senior Planner/Urban Design - City of Fort Worth

The City of Fort Worth is seeking a Senior Planner/Urban Design within the Planning & Development Department / Comprehensive Planning Section. Specific job description and details can be found within the official Job Posting. Applications taken online only at

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Greater Fort Worth Real Estate Council Hosts Susainability Summits

The Greater Fort Worth Real Estate Council will be presenting two sustainability summits in the upcoming weeks at the TCU Neeley School of Business.

Real Projects, Incentives & Answers - January 27, 2011 $45 ($30 for students) 8:00am-10:30am - Discussion regarding benefits of sustainability projects and a panel discussion on real projects, real answers and lessons learned.

Summit Breakfast - Show Me the Money - February 16, 2011 $45($30 for students) 8:00am-10:30am
Discussion on venture capital and who is funding green development.

For registration and more information please consult the flyer.

2010 Midwest Section Texas APA Award Winners

The Midwest Section Texas APA would like to announce our award winners for 2010. Awards will be presented to the recipients at our annual banquet on Friday January 14th. The annual awards program recognizes outstanding planning efforts, innovative projects, best practices and planning leadership, advocacy and education. A panel of volunteers reviewed the entries submitted by private and public sector planners, students, educators and organziations. The entries were evaluated based on originality, quality, implementation, public participation and the role of planners, among other category-specific criteria.

The 2010 Midwest Section Texas APA award winners include:

Project Planning Award
North Texas 2050
Vision North Texas

Project Planning Award
Imagine Burleson: Roadmap to 2030
City of Burleson

Planning Advocate Award
Arlington Urban Design Center
City of Arlington
University of Texas at Arlington

Student Project Award
Vidor Comprehensive Land Use Plan
School of Urban and Public Affairs
University of Texas at Arlington

Thanks for all nominations. The Section looks forward to seeing new and innovative projects again as nominations for next year's awards.

Updated Flyer for Focus North Texas Planning Symposium

The North Central Texas Section of Texas APA will be holding a one-day planning symposium on January 28th, 2011 at the Doubletree Hotel in Dallas. AICP CM credits have been requested. Register online from the website. An updated flyer descibing the event is also available. North Central Texas Section Symposium Flyer.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Open Position - City of Arlington - Planning Intern

Salary: $10.00 per hour/ 20 hours a week (flexible)

Planning Intern Job Description
  • Provide support to staff in the Development Services and Strategic Planning Divisions
  • Assist with the update, input and compliation of data for various City of Arlington reports
  • Assist with the administration of zoning and platting applications
  • Research various planning and zoning issues including, but not limited to, comprehensive planning, transportation, neighborhood planning, housing, economic development, gas drilling, design standards
  • Ability to attend meetings and seminars as needed
  • Ability to research and organize thoughts and ideas in a concise manner
  • Ability to use the internet and various computer software (i.e., Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, Excel, PhotoShop, Adobe InDesign)
  • Will involve driving of a City vehicle for site visits.

Bachelor's Degree in urban and regional planning, geography/GIS, political science/public administration, architecture, landscape architecture, environmental science, business or related field required. Pre-employment screening will include criminal background and motor vehicle record.

The City of Arlington's Department of Community Development and Planning provides a great learning environment for planning and public administration. The City of Arlington is proud to be an EOE. This position closes on January 12, 2011.

To be considered for this position, candidates must apply online at the City of Arlington's website at: