Productive land use in plan, as well as ease of use by public two reasons cited for award
The City of McAllen’s newly adopted comprehensive plan, Envision McAllen, was awarded the Best Comprehensive Plan Award by the Texas Chapter of the American Planning Association at the recent annual conference. Each year, the Best Comprehensive Plan Award is given to a plan that advances the science and art of planning. This award is selected by a committee made up of senior members of APA Texas and industry experts. The Awards Committee evaluates nominees based on originality and innovation, engagement, implementation and effectiveness, quality, and promotion of planning.
“I am so proud of the Envision McAllen plan, which was developed not only by industry leaders, but also, our residents who all contributed their ideas and vision for the future of McAllen,” said McAllen City Manager Roel “Roy” Rodriguez, P.E. “This award recognizes the strategic effort and science behind the plan.”
The plan calls for more efficient and productive land use. Mixed use zonings, combining residential and commercial uses, will be in the new unified development code, which will be adopted in the first quarter of next year.
“We are not waiting to move forward with the plan; some of the ideas in Envision McAllen are already being recognized,” added Rodriguez. “In fact, the new Future Land Use Map is now guiding rezoning case recommendations.”
Additionally, there is a new thoroughfare plan that is in the Envision McAllen plan that is being used when reviewing current subdivisions. The plan calls for greater emphasis on multi-modal transportation options. Based on the plan, Metro McAllen is currently submitting a grant application for a feasibility plan for bus rapid transit lines.
Another reason highlighted by the committee for selecting Envision McAllen for the award was the presentation of the plan, which is easy to read and full of graphics, making it more accessible to all members of the public.
The plan was drafted through an 18-month process consisting of public hearings, stakeholder meetings, and reviews of the plan by planning staff and a City of McAllen appointed steering committee made up of engineering, architecture, land development, education, and business leaders.
The APA Texas Planning Awards Program recognizes individuals, organizations and communities for outstanding contributions to planning in Texas.
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