Friday, November 5, 2010

American Planning Association Honors Pinal County Comprehensive Plan

FLORENCE – The Arizona chapter of the American Planning Association today announced that the Pinal County Comprehensive Plan has been recognized as the best General/Comprehensive Plan for a place with a population greater than 50,000.
Adopted by the Board of Supervisors in November 2009, the Comprehensive Plan is a tool to implement Pinal County's vision and expectations for land use, quality jobs, effective transportation and protection of open spaces.
"This award is a tribute to the vision of the Board of Supervisors and the hard work of our citizens, stakeholders and the Planning Commission," said Pinal County Planning Director Jerry Stabley.  "I am pleased that our peers in the planning field deemed this document worthy of statewide recognition."
The process to create the Comprehensive Plan began in 2007 with the slogan – "We Create our Future."  The slogan helped to emphasize that the process was grass-roots and community driven.  More than 2,000 residents and stakeholders took part during the 46 public events held at various locations across Pinal County.   
"We were extremely pleased with the public's participation in the process," Stabley said. 
"Citizens from throughout the county made sure that the Comprehensive Plan reflected their goals.  Stakeholders such as cities, towns, tribal communities, landowners along with people who work in the development community had a strong role in shaping the Plan."
The impetus to begin work on the Comprehensive Plan began after the Morrison Institute for Public Policy at Arizona State University released its report "Which Way Pinal?" in July 2007.  Pinal County hired the Morrison Institute to interview numerous stakeholders and residents to find out the values that they held when it came to living and working in the county.
"This report challenged us to look at planning for Pinal County in new ways, and provided ideas and 'Cool Tools' to help us in the process," Stabley said.  "The next part of the process was to take what we had learned from the Morrison Institute and apply it to our Comprehensive Plan."