Starting Tuesday, Oct. 8 and running seven weeks until Nov. 19, the Central Coast Section of the American Planning Association will organize and sponsor a Citizens Planning Academy.
The academy provides an unparalleled opportunity for citizens, business owners, community organizers, real estate professionals, elected or appointed officials, students or anyone who wants to learn about the planning and permit process in the South Coast region.
Instructors for this program are local agency and private sector planners, architects, lawyers, professors, engineers and developers. They will teach on just about all of the various subjects that are included in the planning process, such as:
» Santa Barbara’s land use history and California’s legal framework
» Environmental review and CEQA
» Air quality, water quality and climate change laws
» Transportation and infrastructure planning
» Urban design, historic preservation and cultural resources
» The housing market and affordable housing
» Municipal finance and private developer economics
» Green building and an overview of commercial building codes
» Ethics, citizen engagement and how to read blueprints
“This is vitally needed, and I see the Planning Academy as a venue to teach people about our fundamentals and about future forward thinking polices and bold political moves that are needed to grow SB in the ways it was hewn,” said Rob Dayton, Santa Barbara’s principal transportation planner and one of the academy’s volunteer instructors.
Classes will be held from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the Santa Barbara Association of Realtors building at 1415 Chapala St. There is a $65 fee, and the fee includes materials and meals for all classes.
More information, such as a complete list of courses and instructors, can be found at www.openspace-cc.com. The American Planning Association organizes and sponsors Citizens Planning Academies throughout California. The most recent local academies occurred in Ventura in 2010 and San Luis Obispo in 2012.
— Jay Higgins represents the Central Coast Section of the American Planning Association.