2020 National Planning Conference

From Parking Lots to Places

Saturday, April 13, 2019 from 2:45 p.m. - 4 p.m. PDT

CM | 1.25

Activity Type: Educational Sessions

Activity ID: NPC198061

Location: 2011

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  • Find out how placemaking can transform suburban parking lots and strip malls into exciting, people-oriented places.
  • Discover how placemaking can engage communities and how it can reinforce community identity.
  • Explore the public art and architectural components that are crucial for creative placemaking.


Placemaking inspires people to collectively invent public spaces as the heart of their community and feel intimately connected to these places. More than livable, the results of placemaking are loved. This session focuses on the power and possibilities of this collaborative process in transforming suburban parking lots and strip malls into exciting, people-oriented places. Planners, a developer, and a placemaking consultant relate their experiences in creating memorable places in communities outside Washington, D.C., and internationally. They show how placemaking can be used to reinforce community identity, inspire innovation in design and planning, and improve the quality of development.

This course is approved to offer 1.25 LUs (AIA).

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Session Speakers

Paula Rees

Atul Sharma, AICP
Montgomery Planning
Silver Spring, MD

Caroline D. Sanders, AICP
Montgomery Planning
Chevy Chase, MD

Jason Roberts
Better Block

Andy Altman
Fivesquares Development
washington dc, DC