What Do Urban and Regional Planners Do (including Their Typical Day At Work)

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Job Description, Daily Responsibilities, and Work Life

Job Description

Job Description

Urban and Regional Planners develop comprehensive plans and programs for use of land and physical facilities of jurisdictions, such as towns, cities, counties, and metropolitan areas. They also hold public meetings with government officials, social scientists, lawyers, developers, the public, or special interest groups to formulate, develop, or address issues regarding land use or community plans.

Other tasks include:

  • Design, promote, or administer government plans or policies affecting land use, zoning, public utilities, community facilities, housing, or transportation.
  • Advise planning officials on project feasibility, cost-effectiveness, regulatory conformance, or possible alternatives.
  • Recommend approval, denial, or conditional approval of proposals.
  • Discuss with planning officials the purpose of land use projects, such as transportation, conservation, residential, commercial, industrial, or community use.
  • Conduct field investigations, surveys, impact studies, or other research to compile and analyze data on economic, social, regulatory, or physical factors affecting land use.
  • Determine the effects of regulatory limitations on land use projects.

We asked Urban and Regional Planners how satisfied they are with their job. Here is what they said.

Job satisfaction

75%

How meaningful is this job

68%


75% of them said they were satisfied with their job and 68% said they find that their job makes the world a better place or helps to make someone else’s life better.



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Typical Day At Work

On a daily basis, Urban and Regional Planners supervise or coordinate the work of urban planning technicians or technologists. They design, promote, or administer government plans or policies affecting land use, zoning, public utilities, community facilities, housing, or transportation.

  • Keep informed about economic or legal issues involved in zoning codes, building codes, or environmental regulations.
  • Discuss with planning officials the purpose of land use projects, such as transportation, conservation, residential, commercial, industrial, or community use.
  • Advise planning officials on project feasibility, cost-effectiveness, regulatory conformance, or possible alternatives.
  • Assess the feasibility of land use proposals and identify necessary changes.
  • Hold public meetings with government officials, social scientists, lawyers, developers, the public, or special interest groups to formulate, develop, or address issues regarding land use or community plans.

We asked some Urban and Regional Planners a few questions to find out what else does their work day look like. Here is what we found.

Do you have telephone conversations everyday in this job? 94% said yes
How important is it to work in a team in this job? 57% said very important
Do you have group discussions everyday in this job? 89% said yes
Do you talk or work with customers everyday in this job? 66% said yes
Do you have to deal with angry customers everyday in this job? 9% said yes
Do you have to make decisions everyday in this job? 26% said yes


Other responsibilities

Besides their typical day, Urban and Regional Planners also hold public meetings with government officials, social scientists, lawyers, developers, the public, or special interest groups to formulate, develop, or address issues regarding land use or community plans. They may also mediate community disputes or assist in developing alternative plans or recommendations for programs or projects.

On a weekly to monthly basis, Urban and Regional Planners Coordinate work with economic consultants or architects during the formulation of plans or the design of large pieces of infrastructure. They might also Identify opportunities or develop plans for sustainability projects or programs to improve energy efficiency, minimize pollution or waste, or restore natural systems.

In addition, they Create, prepare, or requisition graphic or narrative reports on land use data, including land area maps overlaid with geographic variables, such as population density.

Although specific duties may vary, many of them Advocate sustainability to community groups, government agencies, the general public, or special interest groups.

To some Urban and Regional Planners, it is also their responsibility to Advise planning officials on project feasibility, cost-effectiveness, regulatory conformance, or possible alternatives.


Working life

Working hours

More than 40 hours per week

Working schedule

Regular schedule like a 9 to 5

In a typical work week as an Urban and Regional Planner, you can expect to work more than 40 hours per week.

Do Urban and Regional Planners work in an office-style work environment?

Every day
86%


Never
9%


Do Urban and Regional Planners work outdoors?

Never
28%


Once a month
28%



Is this right for me

Best personality for this career

The Thinkers and The Entrepreneurs

People who are suitable for this job tends to like working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. They like searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally..

They also like starting up and carrying out projects. They like leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes they require risk taking and often deal with business.

You can read more about these career personality types here.



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Related to Urban and Regional Planners Job Description

Urban and Regional Planners job description, what do Urban and Regional Planners do, typical day for Urban and Regional Planners, what is it like to work as an Urban and Regional Planner, how many hours do Urban and Regional Planners work, day to day work of an Urban and Regional Planner

Additional resources

http://www.bls.gov/OOH/life-physical-and-social-science/urban-and-regional-planners.htm
https://www.planning.org/
https://www.planning.org/aicp/
http://www.planningaccreditationboard.org/



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