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Planning Smarter Montco 2015
Planning Smarter Logo

We invite you to participate in our Planning Smarter Montco 2015 program, which offers exciting planning education events throughout the year. The program provides relevant information about planning that will enable local leaders and citizens to better plan for the future of their municipalities. All Planning Smarter events are free of charge and open to the general public unless otherwise noted. Many of the events correspond to the themes of Montco 2040: A Shared Vision, the newly adopted county comprehensive plan. While pre-registration is not required for all events, we highly recommend you register as this is our only way to contact you if an event changes or is canceled. We hope you will be able to join us for these interesting and informative events to share information and insights, and we invite you to sign up to receive event announcements and other planning news. We also invite you to follow us on Facebook and Twitter to get the latest on planning in Montgomery County. For questions about our 2015 education schedule, contact Rita McKelvey at 610-278-3753.

 People reviewing plan 

The Course in Community Planning
March 10, 17, 25, 2015
Upper Merion Township Building (Freedom Hall)
175 West Valley Forge Road • King of Prussia, PA 19406
6:30 p.m. - 9:30 p.m.
$90 Registration Fee (Pre-registration Required)

The Course in Community Planning is an excellent introduction to planning in Montgomery County for any local planning commission appointee or local elected official. This three-session course combines presentations and group exercises that explore the Pennsylvania Municipalities Planning Code (MPC), the function of a planning commission, comprehensive plans, zoning, subdivision and land development, capital budgeting, and official maps. This popular course is a must for all new planning commission members.
 Participants at subdivision course   

  The Course in Subdivision and Land Development Review
April 15, 22, 29, 2015 
Whitpain Township Administration Building (Meeting Rooms A & B)
960 Wentz Road • Blue Bell, PA 19422
6:30 p.m. - 9:30 p.m.
$90 Registration Fee (Pre-registration Required)

The Course in Subdivision and land Development Review is essential for planning commissioners and elected officials. This three-session course reviews the subdivision and land development process from pre-application meetings through the completion of a project. It focuses on the principles of subdivision and land development, the Pennsylvania Municipalities Planning Code requirements, effective plan management procedures, and design and technical standards for subdivisions and land developments.

 Office Building

  Montco 2040 Logo Montco 2040 Theme – Vibrant Economy
Revitalizing Business Parks
May 6, 2015
Upper Dublin Township Building (Main Meeting Room)
801 Loch Alsh Avenue • Fort Washington, PA 19034
2:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. (registration 1:30 p.m. to 2:00 p.m.)      Register Now!

There are a number of business parks in Montgomery County that serve as key employment centers. Since many of these parks were developed several decades ago, they often cannot address the demands of today’s business and development market.  In this two-hour seminar, we will explore how to bring new life to older obsolete business parks through strategic infrastructure improvements, new development and design codes, marketing, and improved mobility and access. Successful mixed-use redevelopment strategies will also be explored.

 Sketch of house

   Montco 2040 Logo Montco 2040 Theme – Connected Communities
Planning on Two Feet:  Narberth’s Form-Based Zoning Explained from the Sidewalk
June 17, 2015
Narberth Borough Hall
100 Conway Avenue • Narberth, PA 19072
6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. (registration 5:30 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.)      Register Now!

The new form-based zoning ordinance adopted in Narberth enables new development to be constructed that blends into the current fabric of the community.  The process of developing this context-sensitive approach to regulating new development will be explained through a session at Narberth Borough Hall.  During a leisurely sidewalk tour in Narberth, the MCPC planner who developed the code will provide examples of how the code would work to enable compatible development throughout the borough. 
 Green parking lot

  Montco 2040 Logo Montco 2040 Theme – Sustainable Places
Establishing Green and Sustainable Parking Lots
September 30, 2015
Montgomery County Planning Commission
One Montgomery Plaza - Suite 202
425 Swede Street • Norristown, PA 19401
4:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m. (registration 3:30 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.)      Register Now!

Parking lots can be more than just places to leave your car. With effective landscaping, smart layout and design, and innovative pavement surfaces, parking lots can become an attractive amenity that can reduce stormwater runoff and maintain moderate temperatures. This workshop will explore great examples of green and sustainable parking lots located throughout the Delaware Valley. An informal open house of Montgomery County Planning Commission offices will take place one hour before the event.

 Transit-oriented development and train

   Montco 2040 Logo Montco 2040 – Land Use Vision
Attracting Great New Transit-Oriented Housing
October 6, 2015
The Courts at Spring Mill Station
1100 E. Hector Street • Conshohocken, PA 19428
6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. (registration 5:30 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.)      Register Now!

Young professionals and older adults are looking for new forms of rental housing near transit facilities to enhance their access to employment and downtown Philadelphia. These new apartments are also being located near trails, the Schuylkill River, and other recreation facilities. They come with features such as structured parking, common rooms, fitness centers, and luxury pool areas. 
 Participants in walkability audit

Montco 2040 Logo Montco2040 Theme – Connected Communities
Walk Montco
October 26, 2015
Ambler Theater
108 E Butler Ave  Ambler, PA 19002
10:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. (registration 9:30 a.m. to 10:00 a.m.)      Register Now!

New design tools are needed to transform our communities to make them safer for pedestrians. National experts will provide information about proven strategies that have been used around the country to enable more pedestrian mobility. Montgomery County's walkability plan will be released at this event. 

 Zoning map

  The Course in Zoning
November 5, 12, 19, 2015
Towamencin Township Building (Meeting Hall)
1090 Troxel Road • Lansdale, PA 19446
6:30 p.m. - 9:30 p.m.
$90 Registration Fee (Pre-registration Required)

The Course in Zoning deals with probably the most complex and provocative topic in local planning. This three-session course emphasizes the fundamentals for developing a sound zoning ordinance using the authority granted in thePennsylvania Municipalities Planning Code. Course topics include the relationship of zoning to comprehensive plans, key terms used in zoning and how they are applied, critical issues in drafting a zoning ordinance and map, procedures for adopting and amending ordinances, and basic zoning administration. The course also explores techniques such as overlay districts, performance zoning, traditional neighborhood development, and planned residential development as well as the options available through regional planning. The course includes mapping exercises, reviews of ordinance provisions, and discussions of problem situations.
 2014 Montgomery Awards reception


Montgomery Awards Celebration
November 18, 2015
4:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.

Celebrate another successful year in planning with other municipal officials, developers, and planning design professionals.  The Montgomery Awards Program recognizes the best in planning, design and advocacy in Montgomery County.  This annual program promotes awareness of outstanding design and innovative planning in our communities by awarding successful land developments, revitalization efforts, open space enhancements, environmental sustainability, and transportation improvements.  Special recognition at the awards celebration will also be given to those individuals who have completed our series of courses we sponsor.

*Please note: Event dates and locations are subject to change.