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Citizen's planning Academy

Community Development Planning Academy

The Citizen’s Planning Academy is an eleven-class course designed to educate and engage residents, business and community leaders in the City’s planning process and how planning shapes our community. The course objective is to assist participants in becoming more effective and informed advocates in future City of Sacramento planning efforts, and to encourage positive engagement in the planning process.

Sessions are designed to include discussion, presentations, Q&A, interactive group exercises, and field trips. Presenters/speakers include City staff, local architects and planning professionals, elected officials, and building industry leaders.

Classes cover a broad spectrum of planning topics and issues, including:

  • The basic tools used by Sacramento City planners
  • How development projects are reviewed
  • A range of current planning topics and issues

The Citizen’s Planning Academy will give participants the information needed to:

  • Participate in future City of Sacramento planning efforts
  • Identify elements of successful development projects
  • Identify the regional benefits and impacts associated with smart growth development versus urban sprawl
  • Educate other community members about effective engagement in the planning process

Except for two Saturday tours, classes will take place on Monday evenings.  The course culminates in a graduation before the Sacramento City Council.

The application period is now closed. If interested, apply for next year.

Planning Academy Application



  • 3/6/17:   Planning/Smart Growth Overview 

  Overview of Planning

  • 3/13/17:   Regional Planning and the General Plan

  Regional Planning

  The General Plan

  • 3/20/17: Planning and Development Code

Planning and Development Code 

  Design Review

  • 4/3/17:   Affordable Housing

Affordable Housing

Affordable Housing & Equity

  • 4/10/17: Historic Preservation and CEQA

Historic Preservation

CEQA, California Environmental Quality Act

  • 4/17/17: The Development Review Process in the Real World 

Examples of Infill Development Projects

  • 4/22/17: Bus Tour (Saturday)
  • 4/24/17:  Smart Growth

  Land Use Planning for Sustainability and Livability

  Public Health and Land Use Planning

  • 4/29/17:  Central City Walking Tour (Saturday)
  • 5/1/17:   Transportation Planning

  Overview of Transportation Planning

  Public Transit in Sacramento

  • 5/8/17:  Climate Change and Adaptation

  The Sacramento Climate Action Plan

Flood Risk and Comprehensive Flood Management Plan

  • 5/15/17:  Planning for Economic Development

  Local and Regional Economic Development Overview

  Regional Economic Growth

  • 5/22/17:  Panel Discussion-Smart Growth and Citizen Involvement
  • 5/23/17:  Graduation - Reception



Helen Selph, Associate Planner
(916) 808-7852

Marco Gonzalez, Assistant Planner
(916) 808-2027 


2016 Citizen's Planning Academy