Americans Want Planning

Today, the American Planning Association (APA) released the findings of their 2012 national poll of Americans' opinions on planning. The results should have planners feeling warm and fuzzy inside.

Despite what recent news may have led you to believe, a resounding 79% of Americans support community planning, while two-thirds of poll respondents believe their community needs more planning.

These are amongst the affirming findings of the APA's recent poll, which was conducted, "to better understand what Americans think planners' priorities should be in light of several trends including local government budget tightening; a decline in private sector investment; significant new federal investment in planning grants to sustain communities; and attempts by a small but vocal minority of the country's electorate to obstruct local planning and community engagement activities."

Other findings to note are that planners are seen as "key leaders" in supporting local economic recovery, with respondents wanting them to focus primarily on creating jobs in their communities -- followed by safety, schools, protecting neighborhoods, and water quality.

A majority of Americans support using "scarce tax resources" for planning, and a "majority want to be personally involved with community planning efforts, whether they live in an city, suburb, small town, or rural America," notes APA Chief Executive Officer Paul Farmer, FAICP.

Full Story: Planning in America: Perceptions and Priorities

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