Request for Proposals - Town of Jena, Louisiana

Request for Proposals - Town of Jena, Louisiana

Center for Planning Excellence


On behalf of the Town of Jena, Louisiana, the Center for Planning Excellence (CPEX) is soliciting proposals from professional planning consultants to create a Comprehensive Town Plan that addresses land use, transportation, future growth and development, and downtown redevelopment and design.

The approximate total project budget is $150,000.

I. Introduction

A. Project Overview: The Comprehensive Town Plan
The final town plan should include phased and prioritized implementation plans for land use and development, including both strategies and physical plans. To the highest degree possible, consultants will be asked to establish a public participation process and communication strategy that engages all sectors of the town's population in this comprehensive planning effort.

B. Planning Context
The Town of Jena is a community of over 3,000 residents in LaSalle Parish, located in central Louisiana. Like many rural Louisiana communities, Jena currently has no government-sanctioned land use or development guidelines. Town leaders believe that growth pressure will result from a planned 4-lane expansion of U.S. Highway 84 through downtown, growth of existing industry, and redevelopment projects at the LaSalle Airport. Therefore, Jena officials want a planning consultant to assist in creating a future land use and development plan that engages the challenges and opportunities posed by these factors. Town leaders are committed to the creation of a comprehensive town plan that respects the unique aspects of Jena's small-town atmosphere while fostering economic growth and guiding future development.

II. Scope of Work and Description of Deliverables

The Scope of Work (SOW) for the Town of Jena Comprehensive Town Plan should describe how the consultant will accomplish four objectives: public outreach and participation methodology; defining existing conditions and developing a vision; developing the comprehensive plan; and deliverables.

A. Public Outreach and Participation Methodology
The implementation of the Jena Comprehensive Town Plan will depend upon extensive public participation throughout the planning process. Respondents should therefore describe how they will engage residents, neighborhoods, industry, small business leaders, civic leaders and other stakeholder groups in a participatory planning process, including detailed descriptions of successful methods for seeking input and engaging the public. The consultant team should explain how they will gather information using a variety of methods, potentially including – but not limited to – focus groups, interviews with agency leaders, and meetings with civic and business leaders.

Due to the lack of "a culture" of land use planning throughout Louisiana communities, it is also vital that an educational component be incorporated into every stage of plan creation. The consultant team will develop a public outreach plan to engage and inform Jena residents about the comprehensive plan.

B. Defining Existing Conditions and Developing a Vision
Using existing plans, projects, and relevant background data as a starting point, respondents will describe how they will use existing plans and data, combined with community input about land use and development, to derive a broad vision for the town and surrounding areas.

C. Develop the Comprehensive Plan
Using a Smart Growth framework (see below), input from the public process, and issues and trends in Jena, consultants should describe how they will develop a Comprehensive Town Plan that consolidates and coordinates – at a minimum – the following elements, either as individual chapters (elements) or in combination:
? Land Use
? Transportation
? Economic Development
? Downtown/Urban Design
? Downtown Revitalization
? Corridor Design and Development
? Housing
? Infrastructure

The Comprehensive Town Plan must contain both a detailed land use plan (including maps) and actionable implementation strategies that include high-priority/catalyst projects to address immediate needs of the town.

D. Deliverables
The respondents' will provide full descriptions of all deliverables to be created during the planning process. The SOW should also describe the specific processes for creating and providing each deliverable to the client, including necessary inputs, client/stakeholder/public review (as appropriate), and the means for inclusion into final documents. Respondents with GIS capabilities should note how they intend to use the technology for analysis and presentation (the town does not have existing GIS).

III. Integration of Other Plans, Priorities, and Initiatives

The following completed and ongoing planning efforts and documents should be incorporated into the planning process and deliverables:

? Planning for Smart Growth: Jena, Louisiana is the product of a previous planning effort in Jena. This plan should be used as a reference point that will be refined, added to, improved upon, and/or revamped throughout the comprehensive planning activities. For a digital version of the plan, please request from Camille Manning-Broome at [email protected].
? The Town of Jena is an active member of the LaSalle Economic Development District and participates in the Central Louisiana Economic Development Alliance (CLEDA). The economic development component of the Jena Comprehensive Town Plan should be consistent with the goals of CLEDA. Though CLEDA has created a regional plan for business retention and attraction, there is no regional plan for future growth. Town officials seek to develop a plan for its economic prosperity by addressing the coming growth along with changes it will experience from upcoming transportation projects.
? Finally, the process and deliverables must be consistent with the following principles and existing plans:
? Smart Growth best practices (see
? Louisiana Speaks Strategic Implementation Plan Policy Guide 2: A Statewide Framework for Local Comprehensive Planning (see
? The Louisiana Speaks Regional Plan (see

IV. Proposal Requirements

Applicants must submit twelve (12) identical copies of a thoughtful, clear and well-organized proposal that demonstrates consultant qualifications and achieves the goals outlined herein. Submittals should be printed on letter-size (8.5" x 11") paper and assembled with spiral- or ring-type binding. Include a Table of Contents for the proposal and provide page numbers for each part of the proposal, as well as any separate attachments. All pages in the proposal should be numbered.

The proposal should include the following items:
1. Statement of Interest/ Cover Letter: Provide a statement of interest for the project. The letter, written on the firm's letterhead, shall cite the individual who will be the primary point of contact for matters relating to the proposal and shall be signed by an individual with the authority to commit the firm to the project. It should also include full contact information such as name, address, telephone, fax, and email address. The letter shall further include a narrative summary of the strengths brought by each team component.
2. Statement of Understanding of the Work: Responding consultant teams must describe their understanding of the work being solicited and their philosophical approach. The format, content, and length of this statement are entirely at the discretion of the respondent.
3. Proposed Scope of Work/ Deliverables, with Timelines: Respondents will provide a detailed proposed SOW and timeline. The SOW should also describe the proposed work plan including: planning methodology, technology and resources to be used, public participation strategy, and implementation approaches. The SOW must fully address requirements described in Section II of this RFP.
4. Project Personnel, Bios, and Relevant Experience: Respondents will provide an organizational chart showing the roles of the lead firm and each sub-consultant firm or individual. Proposals will describe the project assignments and system/structure of authority and communication between principals and key professional members of the lead firm and sub-consultant(s). They will also provide qualifications and experience of the principals and key professional members of the consultant team that will be involved in the project. Relevant experience of the lead firm should be given particular attention, including experience with similar projects and specific issues relevant to this project. It is strongly recommended that the consultant team include at least one Louisiana-based firm.
5. Representative Projects: Respondents will provide a brief narrative for a maximum of five projects performed by the lead firm and a maximum of three projects for each sub-consultant that are most similar and relevant to this project, and that have been completed within the last seven years. Current contact information for all projects listed should be included.
6. Proposed Cost-Estimate: Respondents will include a detailed cost estimate for the proposed SOW. Each team member's hourly rate and projected hours (by task) should be noted, in addition to projected costs for project management/ administration, and expenses.
7. Work Samples: Respondents will include comparable work products for the lead firm and all sub-consultants. Sample work products may be submitted in *.pdf format on a CD-ROM. If the team submits a CD-ROM, please provide one disc per package to ensure that each member of the selection committee has access to materials on the disc.
8. Additional Information: Respondents will provide any additional information that the lead firm believes may better describe its qualifications or be of benefit to the town.

V. Selection Process

A. Important Dates
Proposals must be received no later than 5:00pm CST, Wednesday, February 18, 2009.

Packages must be mailed or hand delivered to:
Camille Manning-Broome, Director of Planning
Center for Planning Excellence
402 N. Fourth Street
Baton Rouge, LA 70802

CPEX will not accept any packets that are delivered by facsimile or electronic mail. Late packets will be returned to the respondent.

The following dates are intended to provide a guideline for this process, and are subject to change.

RFP available: January 7, 2009
Pre-Proposal Meeting: January 16, 2009
Deadline for Proposals: February 18, 2009 – 5:00pm, CST
Notification of short list (top 3 teams): February 2009
Consultant interviews: March 2009
Selection announced: March 2009

A pre-response meeting will be held beginning at 11:30am CST, January 16, 2009. The purpose of this meeting is to respond to consultants' questions about the project and the procurement process. Meeting minutes will not be issued and this meeting is not required. To participate in the conference call, email Camille Manning-Broome at [email protected] for details and phone number.

B. Point-of-Contact
Respondents shall restrict all contact and questions regarding this RFP and selection process to the individual named herein. Questions concerning terms, conditions and technical specifications shall be directed in writing to Camille Manning-Broome at [email protected]. Responses will be sent to consultants that request to be on the pre-response list.

C. Evaluation of Proposals
CPEX and the Town of Jena have created a selection committee that will evaluate submissions based on the submittal requirements listed in Section IV of this document.

The selection committee will short-list consultant teams to invite back for interviews. Based on these interviews and proposal responses, the selection committee will contact one consultant team to enter into contract negotiations for the production of a Comprehensive Town Plan for Jena.

Upon notification of selection by the Town of Jena, the successful respondent will be required to deliver a final Scope of Work and contract.. If the successful respondent is unwilling or unable to fulfill the agreement as required by the town, the Town Council has the right to request another respondent to enter into the contract with the town.

VI. General Notifications

Professional services are procured in accordance with Louisiana law. CPEX reserves the right to reject any and all submissions, to waive any and all formalities outlined in the RFP and in the selection process and generally to make the award that, in its judgment, will best meet the objectives stated in this RFP. CPEX reserves the right to request additional information and/or clarifications from any or all respondents to assist in its evaluation process. CPEX reserves the right to request changes to consultant team composition. All dates in the RFP are subject to change at the discretion of CPEX, and notice of any changes will be provided to all respondents.

CPEX and the Town of Jena notifies all possible respondents that no person shall be excluded from participation in, denied any benefits of, or otherwise discriminated against in connection with the award and performance of any contract on the basis of race, religious creed, color, national origin, ancestry, physical disability, sex, age, ethnicity, or on any other basis prohibited by law.

All proposing entities shall comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and are encouraged to provide a written statement within submitted proposals and any subsequent contract in which the entity certifies that it is an equal opportunity employer, that it does not discriminate in its employment practices or delivery of services, and that it will make every effort, when economically feasible to subcontract with socially or economically disadvantaged persons and businesses (as defined in Louisiana R.S. 39:1732).

This Request for Proposals does not commit CPEX or the Town of Jena to pay any costs incurred in the submission of a proposal or the costs incurred in making necessary studies and designs for preparation thereof, or contract for service or supplies. Expenses incurred by the respondents in replying to the RFP or in making any appearance before CPEX and Town of Jena representatives are the respondents' alone. There will be no compensation for these expenses provided by CPEX or the Town of Jena.

Respondents and their agents are strictly prohibited from lobbying CPEX staff and CPEX board members, Town of Jena officials, staff, or selection committee members at any time in the application and selection process. Failure to comply with this clause shall be grounds for rejection of the RFP response.

CPEX will not accept any submissions that are delivered by facsimile or electronic mail. Late proposals will be returned to the respondent. CPEX and the Town of Jena reserve the right to accept or reject proposals for any reason or proposals that do not contain all elements and information requested in this document.

Posted January 12, 2009

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