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Creating a Unified Vision for the Future?

by Andrew Baker, Baseline Engineering

Whether you love them or hate them, Planned Unit Developments have become a divisive issue in most jurisdictions along the Front Range. Once viewed as a “one-size-fits-all” solution to any outdated or undesirable development code, the approval of developments based on these often vague land entitlements has many appointed and elected bodies calling for more detail in rezone hearings. Even traditional zone districts are given far more scrutiny than in the past as decision makers realize the effect that plans approved 20 years ago are having on development today.

Metro districts also continue to play an increasingly active role in creating design standards, phasing plans, and the administration of approval conditions. Planners generally believe in transparency and public engagement, and as more citizens become involved in planning processes, the standard deviation of public opinion continues to increase.

The AICP Code of Ethics informs planning experts in how to navigate this difficult melting pot of opinion and agency, but how do we ensure that policy makers and enforcers share these values and create a unified vision for the future? 

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