Rural Planning Caucus of Virginia 2017 Conference - Future of the Rural Economy

Rural Planning Caucus of Virginia


Wednesday, October 18, 2017, 1 p.m.
Friday, October 20, 2017, 1 p.m. EDT

South Boston, VA, United States


Planners are being challenged to provide guidance and leadership as governments, faced with a renewed awareness of the importance of reinventing local economies and preserving resources, continue to promote prosperity for its citizens.  As resources are examined, governments, local stakeholders and planners are realizing more clearly the importance of small business development and tourism to a prosperous local economy.  Similarly, communities are focusing more on local products and service needs necessary to support local prosperity. When supporting efforts to strengthen local economies and fostering stewardships for sustainable resources, the planners’ challenge will be to balance these often conflicting interests to focus on utilizing existing resources.  The “2017 Rural Planning Caucus of Virginia Conference: Future of the Rural Economy" is a two and a half day program that focuses on strategies and techniques that advance the concepts of rural planning; sustainable resources; alternatives to traditional tourism using modern technology; public facility assessment and siting; solar energy; conditional zoning; rural challenges and opportunities; legalities of different regulations; and planning ethics.  Participants will gain understanding of a comprehensive strategy for addressing these concepts and acquire specific skills in best practices for managing resources, alternative solar energy sources, public facility needs and provision, community impacts of current rural issues and promiting local resources for tourism. The intended audience for this conference includes county administrators, city and town managers, economic development directors, farmers and local business owners, agriculture and conservation advocates, as well as design and planning professionals--architects, engineers, planners, landscape architects, and transportation engineers--who are engaged in master planning, regulation development and enforcement, economic development, producing and marketing local goods and infrastructure design. The program presents the concepts outlined herein through lectures, detailed case studies, group discussion and exercises. Participants will: (1) understand strategies to revitalize downtowns; facilitate integration of local resources with potential tourism markets and supportive land use; 2) explore concepts of public infrastructure needs assessment and development of procedures for strategies for facility parity, selection and siting; (3) examine results of conditional zoning; (4) consider economic and resource considerations of public/private partnerships; (5) assess legal standing and operational and management practices relative to codied regulations and court decisions; and (6) ethical issues facing planners.  The Conference, held at the beautiful Berry Hill Plantation Resort and Conference Center in Halifax, Virginia, is sponsored by: Dominion Energy; Tobacco Region Revitalization Commission; Virginig Housing Development Authority; Devil's Backbone Brewery; Hunting Creek Vinyards; The Berkley Group; Draper Aden Associates; EPR, PC; Housing Virginia; Land Planning and Design; Virginia Association of Counties; and Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development.

Contact Info

Darla Orr,


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