Creating Livable Communities, Not Leaving Planning to Chance

November 21, 2002

The American Planning Association and the American Institute of Certified Planners sponsored the 2002 AICP Symposium: "Creating Livable Communities, Not Leaving Planning to Chance" at the National Building Museum in Washington, D.C.

The Symposium featured Gene Bunnell, author of Making Places Special: Stories of Real Places Made Better by Planning, a book from APA Planners Press. Making Places Special is a series of 10 case studies highlighting best planning practices in cities ranging from Burlington, Massachusetts, to San Diego, California.

Bunnell's argument that careful planning and thoughtful public policy will help create livable communities and enhance the quality of life in America's cities is illustrated in his narratives of each city. He makes a strong case for why the development of communities should not be left to chance and should include a range of stakeholders. Bunnell will share with the audience visual examples of places made better by planning.

Following the slide presentation, there was panel moderated by Paul Farmer, FAICP, former executive director of APA. The panel included:

  • Sam Casella, FAICP, AICP President

  • Ellen Ittelson, Director of Planning Services for Denver, Colorado

  • Robert Collins, City Manager of Kansas City, Missouri

Based on their extensive experience with planning and community livability, the respondents discussed the practicalities of applying the lessons identified in the case studies.