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2007 Excellence in Planning Speaker Series

January 23
Edward Mierzejewski
of the Center for Urban Transportation Research, University of South Florida.
Listen Mierzejewski's presentation and download his presentation.

February 15
Jeff Speck
is a nationally acclaimed town planner and urban designer. Currently, he directs two leadership initiatives: “The Mayors' Institute on City Design” and “Your Town” - both of which teaches design skills to community leaders nationwide. He also created a new initiative, the Governors’' Institute on Community Design, which brought smart-growth principles and techniques to state leaders. Speck has served as director of design at the National Endowment for the Arts. Prior to that, he spent a decade at Duany Plater-Zyberk and Company as director of town planning. Ten Resolutions for Mayors is a document written by Speck as a guide to better design. Listen to Speck's presentation.

March 29
Dick Tustian
is a planner, architect and educator with 50 years experience in shaping the built environment. He served as Montgomery County’s planning director for 24 years. More recently, he spent 10 years as an architect and consultant, 4 years as senior fellow and faculty at Harvard University’s Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, and 8 years as adjunct professor and lecturer at the University of Pennsylvania. Tustian covered “Mapping the Growth Management Genome.” Listen to his presentation and download his presentation.

April 5
Chris Nelson
is the co-director of the Metropolitan Institute at Virginia Tech University’s Alexandria campus. He’s conducted pioneering research in land use planning, growth management, public financing and urban development policy. Nelson addressed “The Infrastructure and Affordable Housing Linkage.” View or listen to Nelson's presentation and download his download his presentation.

April 12
Robert Gibbs
has been a pioneer in reviving the community-oriented principles of traditional town planning and smart growth as an antidote to the alienating, formless sprawl of suburbia. He’s considered a leading urban planning consultant by some of the most respected mayors, architects, and developers in America. During the past 20 years, Gibbs has been active in developing innovative yet practical methods for applying current trends in residential and commercial development to more than 300 town centers and historic cities across North America, including Atlanta, Seattle, and Denver. He also consulted with many new urban towns including: Alys Beach, Kentlands, Rosemary Beach, and Seaside. Gibbs’ topic was "Principles and Techniques to Accommodate Growth and Enhance Community Identity, Livability and Economic Success." Listen to his presentation.

May 3
Richard Heapes
is the founder and principal of Street-Works, LLC, a mixed-use development and consulting firm headquartered in New York. He’s nationally recognized for creating great urban places. Heapes recently led a $180-million mixed-use development in suburban West Hartford, Conn. Heapes’ topic was "A Formula for Good Growth." Listen to Heapes' presentation. Listen to Heapes' presentation and download his presentation.

May 17
Robert Hunter
is the president of the American Planning Association, which represents 41,000 planners and other professional in 39 nations. Hunter also serves as the executive director of the Hillsborough City-County Planning Commission in Tampa, Fla. View Hunter's lecture, "Who Plays and Who Pays?"

May 24
Alexander von Hoffman
is the senior research fellow at the Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard University. He’s authored three books on urban revival and is now writing a history of low-income housing politics and policy. Von Hoffman addressed “Urban Planning in the Age of Sprawl: Thoughts on the Past and Future of American Metropolitan Growth.” His presentation focused, in part, on three growth management case studies, including Montgomery, Loudoun and Fairfax counties. Listen to Hoffman's lecture and download his presentation.

May 31
Gerritt Knaap
is a professor and the executive director of the National Center for Smart Growth Reasearch and Education at the University of Maryland. He offered a brief description of how projects from the National Center for Smart Growth could be of use to planners in Montgomery County. Listen (Part I and Part II) to Knaap's lecture.

June 6
Edward “Ned” Hill
is a professor and distinguished scholar of Economic Development at the Maxine Levin College of Urban Affairs, Cleveland State University; he’s also a senior fellow in the Metropolitan Policy Program at the Brookings Institution. Hill edited Economic Development Quarterly from 1994 to 2005. Download his presentation and listen to his lecture.

June 7
Ed McMahon
holds the Charles Fraser chair on Sustainable Development at the Urban Land Institute. He’s nationally known as a leading authority on sustainable development, land conservation, urban design and historic preservation. McMahon addressed “The Dollars and Sense of Responsive Design.” Listen (Part I, Part II, and Part II) to McMahon's lecture.

June 14
Michael Freedman
is the principal and founder of an urban design firm in San Francisco that specializes in infill development master plans, corridor redevelopment, design guidelines and open space planning. Freedman addressed "A Strategy for Superior Infill: Guiding Growth and Change with Effective Regulatory and Capital Improvement Tools." Listen (Part I and Part II) to Freedman's lecture.

June 21
Peter Park
is the director of Denver’s Community Planning and Development Department, which specializes in urban design and innovative design solutions that balance development needs with unique site concerns. Park covered “Balancing Community and Development Needs with Innovative Design and Planning Tools.” Listen (Part I and Part II) to Park's lecture.

July 12
Gordon Price
is the director of the City Program at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, British Columbia, and is a professor in the School of Community and Regional Planning at the University of British Columbia. He’s written extensively on Vancouver and transportation and land use issues. Price discussed “The Vancouver Recipe: How to Increase Density and Reduce Fat, which drew upon Vancouver's experiences of increasing residential development in its urban core yet seeing a drop in vehicle use. Along with examples from other cities using this approach. Price presented ideas for both urban and suburban areas. Listen (Part I and Part II) to his presentations, view (video stream) or download it.

September 27
Andrew Brunhart
is the general manager for the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission (WSSC), which provides water and wastewater services for 1.6 million customers in Prince George's and Montgomery counties. He’s also a licensed professional engineer. Before joining WSSC, Brunhart worked for 30 years for the U.S. Navy, where he specialized in developing and managing infrastructure, including utilities and facilities operations and maintenance, as well as capital construction. Brunhart discussed top priorities for WSSC and infrastructure challenges, both nationally and for WSSC.

October 11
John Norquist
serves as president and CEO of the Congress for the New Urbanism, a membership organization advocating diverse, livable communities. Norquist's work promoting New Urbanism as an alternative to sprawl draws on his experience as mayor of Milwaukee from 1988 to 2004, when the city experienced a decline in poverty and saw a boom in new downtown housing. He oversaw a revision of the city's zoning code and reoriented development around walkable streets and public amenities, such as the city's 3.1-mile Riverwalk. Norquist's topic, "Adding Long-Term Value to Montgomery County," delved into the new urbanist movement's strongest lessons for Montgomery County and the challenges of applying its principles to comprehensive reform of the planning and development system. Click here to listen to his lecture (Part 1, Part 2).

October 25
Terry Holzheimer
is the director of economic development for Arlington County, Va. He helped work on the emergence of the dynamic Ballston Metro Station neighborhood. In his talk, "The Evolution of Planning in Arlington, Virginia," Holzheimer discussed the evolution of the Ballston area, the new Clarendon plan and Arlington Pike.

November 15
James Murley, Esq
. became the director of the Catanese Center for Urban and Environmental Solutions at Florida Atlantic University in 1999. Prior to that, he served as Secretary of the Florida Department of Community Affairs and Executive Director of 1000 Friends of Florida. He currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Congress for New Urbanism (CNU) and serves as Secretary-Treasurer of the Florida Chapter of CNU. He also serves on the Advisory Boards for the Coastal States Stewardship Foundation, the Seaside Institute, the Land Trust of Dade County, Trust for Public Land in Florida, and is a fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration. He is a graduate of Denison University and a graduate of George Washington University Law School. Click here to listen to his lecture (Part I and Part II).