March 24, 2011

Boston: A City of History and Innovation

APA's National Planning Conference, Boston, April 9-12, 2011

CHICAGO — Boston is one of the oldest cities in the country boasting some of the most innovative ideas in planning. From April 9–12, 2011, Boston becomes a living laboratory for thousands of planners from across the country and around the world for the American Planning Association's (APA) National Planning Conference. The conference will be held in the heart of Boston at the Hynes Convention Center.

The four-day conference addresses the challenges communities face today as well as looking forward to the future — bus rapid transit, urban agriculture, economic development and shrinking cities. Boston has a long history of planning and innovation and is proof that good planning creates communities of lasting value.

APA's National Planning Conference provides information and resources for planning practitioners, educators, citizens, business leaders, planning commissioners and elected officials. Nearly 200 conference sessions address the information communities need today and for planning for tomorrow. Sixty mobile workshops will take attendees out into the Boston neighborhoods and region to experience planning in action. View the entire conference program at

"Boston's history and innovations offer lessons that everyone can implement back home. During the conference we will see first-hand how the Boston region and neighborhoods are addressing historic preservation issues, economic challenges and population shifts," said Jeff Soule, FAICP, Outreach and International Director of the American Planning Association.

This year's conference features many thought-provoking keynote speakers and policy makers:

  • Michael Sandel, the Harvard professor of the popular justice course, explores the notion of justice in our daily civic life on Sunday, April 10.
  • Raphael Bostic, Assistant Secretary for Policy Development and Research for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development discusses the federal perspective on sustainability on Sunday, April 10.
  • Members of the Global Planners Network discuss sustainability from an international perspective on Monday, April 11.
  • Edward Glaeser, a Harvard economics professor, discusses his work focusing on the determinants of city growth and the role of cities as centers of idea transmission.

Pro-bono planners will work side-by-side with Mattapan community stakeholders during the day-long AICP Community Planning Workshop focusing on the former Cote Ford site on Saturday, April 9. Together, the planners and stakeholders will work to create a vision for the redevelopment of the former auto dealership site focusing on brownfield remediation and reuse, transit-oriented development, economic and urban reinvestment and sustainability.

APA's National Planning Conference offers the most in-depth planning information and training available for the profession. Attendees can focus on enhancing day-to-day skill sets as well as envisioning and implementing the bigger picture. In addition, the conference offers a variety of learning platforms including full and half-day training workshops, sessions, facilitated discussions, mobile workshops, networking opportunities, and special events. Attendees also can learn from Boston itself.

The 2011 APA National Planning Conference is made possible with generous support from the following sponsors: Constellation Energy, HOK, VHB, Paladin Data Systems Corp., CDM, International Sign Association, esri, APA's Urban Design & Preservation Division and the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy.

On-site registration is available at the Hynes Convention Center.

To request media credentials to attend the conference, please contact Roberta Rewers at


Roberta Rewers, APA Public Affairs; 312-786-6395;