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Winston-Salem/Forsyth Legacy urban planning guide wins National Award for Planning


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The American Planning Association has honored the Legacy 2030 comprehensive plan for Winston-Salem and Forsyth County with a National Planning Excellence Award.

The association presented the prestigious Daniel Burnham Award for a Comprehensive Plan at its national meeting April 29 in Atlanta. The award recognizes a comprehensive or general plan that advances the science and art of planning through such measures as originality, innovation, public engagement and the role of planners.

In selecting Legacy 2030 for the award, Ann C. Bagley, the awards jury chair, said, “Planners in Winston-Salem/Forsyth County used creative outreach tools to engage its residents in the planning process.… Even the smallest of Forsyth County’s towns were given the opportunity to offer solutions and develop goals, policy recommendations and actions at community meetings or on the website. The plan addresses the pressing issues facing the county and used a fun way to engage residents in the process.”

To involve citizens, planners used such tools as an interactive website, a film series, public meetings and a music video. More than 700 comments were gathered through a series of public meetings and the plan’s interactive website, which had more than 30,000 webpage views by the time the plan was adopted by all of the county’s government bodies in February 2013, said Paul Norby, the city-county planning director.

“One of the benefits of the Legacy 2030 outreach process was that our department came into contact with more citizens than ever before,” Norby said. “The community now sees greater connections between planning and things like public health, local foods, equity, and quality of life in general.”

The Legacy 2030 plan is an update of the original Legacy comprehensive plan adopted in 2001. It is intended to help our community plan now for a projected population growth of 120,000 people by 2030 while also ensuring that there is space for commercial and industrial growth, recreation, schools, and other uses. The plan covers a wide variety of subjects including economic growth, the environment, transportation, downtown and neighborhoods, and is posted online. The American Planning Association has also posted a video about the Legacy 2030 plan winning the Burnham Award and it is posted at https://www.planning.org/awards/2014/.

Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Legacy 2013 plan

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