Community Participatory Planning Workshop

Working with a host city or a citizen's group, we involve the community directly in formulating waterfront plans. We believe with Roberta Brandes Gratz, author of The Living City, that "The best experts in a city are its users. The vision for a place should come from the community up, not from City Hall down."

We have perfected a Community Participatory Planning Workshop technique in cities of all sizes as a proven method of forging consensus and establishing a practical short- and long-term action agenda. Directed by a Waterfront Community Assistance Team selected to fit each locale, our workshop enables a representative group of citizens to become community planners.

We go beyond the pro forma hearing or "visioning" wish lists to enable people to really get involved in charting the future direction of their waterfront. Our "hands-on" workshop results in concept plans for specific sites developed by the citizens themselves. Generally the workshop takes one-and-a-half days. A special illustrated presentation prepared exclusively for the community kicks off the session.

The result? A community-based waterfront plan prepared by, and reported in public by, representative citizens. Professionally-prepared graphics created by volunteers bring the plans to life. Usually there's a surprising degree of agreement, enthusiasm and a belief that positive things can and will happen. Provides the impetus for the next steps.

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