Beyond the Land Use Plan: What's Next for Blue Earth County

APA Minnesota Chapter


Thursday, September 28, 2017
1:45 p.m. - 2:45 p.m. CDT

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Blue Earth County is currently in the process of updating their nearly 20-year old Comprehensive Land Use Plan, which is reaching its planning lifecycle of 2020.  Beyond a general update to plan for future growth into a new forecast year, the plan must respond to industry changes, shifting demographics, growth pressure concerns, among other concerns.  The bustling County Seat of Mankato and growth pressures within the nearby lakes region present the county with different challenges from other agricultural areas of the County.  This session will provide overview of the history and current challenges of Blue Earth County along with the progress of the Comprehensive Land Use Plan development and lessons learned.

The session will highlight the following learning objectives:

• Problem Solving: The County’s diverse landscape, from urban Mankato to wooded bluffs to lands in agricultural production, provide a unique set of challenges for setting a future vision for Blue Earth County. Population shifts within the County, new and emerging agricultural practices and industries and environmental considerations are being considered through the update of the Comprehensive Land Use Plan, and lessons learned will be presented. 

• Skill Building: Effective public engagement strategies are continually changing.  Adding in the complexity of reaching residents of 11 cities and 23 townships requires a specific strategy for engaging the public.  The public engagement strategy used for this planning process will be discussed, including successes and challenges.

• Innovation: The update will take Blue Earth County Land Use Plan from its 20-year old plan to an updated document that is intended to provide a vision and strategy to guide the County toward 2040.  Additionally, this sessions will provide another perspective from the seven county Metro comprehensive plan update process


Aaron Stubbs

Aaron Stubbs is a Land Use Planner with Blue Earth County. A graduate of the University of Arizona’s College of Architecture, Planning, and Landscape Architecture with a Master’s of Science in Planning. Aaron’s professional experience includes issuing building permits, reviewing residential and commercial development proposals, and applying ... Read More

Stephanie Falkers


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Jane Kansier,