Each quarter APA's Planning Advisory Service publishes a new PAS Report providing authoritative guidance on current issues and innovative practices.
Subscribing organizations automatically receive each new PAS report as it is published. Subscribers may view recent reports online and purchase print versions at a 50 percent discount from the APA store.
Sustaining Places: Best Practices for Comprehensive Plans
The comprehensive plan, also called the general plan or community master plan, is the official statement of a local government establishing policies for its future long-range development. This report is the culmination of a four-year effort by the American Planning Association (APA) to define the role of comprehensive plans in addressing the sustainability of human settlements.
It presents a set of comprehensive plan standards organized around six principles, two processes, and two attributes. And it includes a set of best practices to implement each of these components. Collectively, these principles, processes, attributes, and supporting best practices define what the comprehensive plan for sustaining places should do. The report also includes a plan-scoring procedure for communities that want to systematically compare their plans against a national standard.
The plan standards framework described in this report is not a prescription or recipe. Rather it is a resource and benchmark for communities to use as they develop solutions that work for their particular circumstances. The ultimate aim is to help planners, public officials, and other community stakeholders realize the powerful potential of the comprehensive plan to sustain 21st century places.
PAS subscribers received the report in February. Others may order it from the APA Store.
PAS Reports Archive
Whatever issue you're working on, chances are there's a PAS Report that covers it. Since 1949, PAS has published about 575 reports on a wide range of planning topics.
Take a look at the PAS Reports list to see all the titles in this vital resource series.
Is the title you want not on your department's bookshelf?
PAS published its first Information Report in 1949. To celebrate this history, each month we'll present a new report from the archives. We hope you enjoy these fascinating snapshots of planning issues of yesteryear.
Information Report No. 23, February 1951
Capital Improvement Programming — Some Considerations
Capital improvement programming is the scheduling of selected physical plans and facilities for a community over a certain period of time. The planning department should be thoroughly involved in this procedure to help ensure that local infrastructure spending is guided by the community's long-term comprehensive plan.
This month's historic PAS Report from 1951 reiterates the importance of the planner's role and discusses some of the considerations involved in capital improvement programming.