Dates vary per workshop, please see course schedule listed on the bottom right of this page!


Locations vary per workshop. 

Driving Directions 


Orange County Neighborhood Preservation & Revitalization Division

Located at: 450 E. South Street, Orlando, FL 32801

Phone: 407-836-5606

Email: ocneighborhoods@ocfl.net 


Orange County Citizen Planner Academy 

Course Series Objective
You can help make our community a more prosperous, livable, and healthy place for all our citizens and guests both now and in the future. This series of classes is designed to educate the public about how the planning and land development process in our community.  Knowledge can empower those who graduate from the Citizen Planner Academy to make a difference as active participants who help shape decisions about development, neighborhoods, and public projects in a manner that considers long-term impacts, as well as the needs of current residents and visitors.

All participants are strongly encouraged to enroll in the core course, Planning Basics, which provides a foundation and reference for other courses.  Special topics will introduce the unique considerations involved in other planning processes. Professional planners from the public and private sector will present information and use interactive exercises to help participants apply the principles taught during class. Emphasis will be placed on the important role of citizens and the types of data needed to make sustainable decisions about development.

The Academy is open to all Orange County citizens; however, space is limited and registration is on a first come, first served basis. Classes can be taken in any order (Sustainability 101 and Planning Basics are not pre-requisites, but highly recommended). Participants will keep materials provided in class for continued reference. Those who attend the Planning Basics course and two Special Topics courses will be recognized as a graduate of the Citizen Planner Academy.

Course Topics
Sustainability 101 An Orange to Green Introduction:  How is Orange County working toward its vision of a community characterized by a diverse, dynamic, and resilient economy; a built environment that is in harmony with the natural environment.  This class begins with a tour of the Orange County Landfill.  The tour is followed by a workshop which covers the basic concepts of sustainability, with a special focus on how they are being applied today to address our long-term water, waste management and energy needs.

Planning Basics -  This class will provide an overview of planning principles and will educate participants about the land development process in Orange County. Subjects covered include Background and Definitions; Sustainability and Why it Matters; Data and Citizen Participation; Comprehensive Plan and Zoning; and Funding. The class will conclude with a role-playing exercise that works through the steps of the planning process.

Community Place Making - Come learn how to build a community’s capacity for revitalization and how small area studies and a visioning process may be used to implement changes in land use and design that help create prosperous, livable, and healthy places. This class will include opportunities to articulate strategies to overcome challenges and move toward identified goals in neighborhood planning scenarios.

Emergency Resource Management - How does a community prepare for, stay safe during and manage its resources after a disaster strikes?  This class will feature information about the four phases of the emergency planning process, and the National Incident Management System - a protocol used to coordinate and respond to events from the local to federal level.  This class will conclude with an activity involving a mock emergency situation.

Reshaping the Urban Form - Urban form gives a “sense of place” and character to groups of buildings, streetscapes, public spaces, neighborhoods and cities. This class will introduce students to basic principles and techniques of Urban Design, and explain how the arrangement and design of buildings, open spaces, public amenities, systems and services contribute towards creating a sustainable, functional and attractive built environment. Design exercises and an optional walking tour will illustrate the practical application of many of the concepts discussed during class.

Mobility Planning - Most of us think of cars when we think of the transportation system, but buses, trains, trails, and sidewalks get us where we need to be as well.  Ideally, our transportation system should allow for multiple choices for getting to and from where we live, work, and recreate. This class will cover the basic concepts of transportation planning and highlight the special field of Context-Sensitive design.  At the end of the session, participants will engage in an exercise to balance the needs of different transportation system users along a case study corridor.

Sustainability 101: An Orange to Green Introduction

  • Tuesday, September 24, 2013 ~ 5:30 to 8:30pm
    Orange County Landfill, 5901 Young Pine Road, Orlando, FL 32829

Planning Basics Class Schedule
You may choose "one" of the following dates:

  • Wednesday, May 8, 2013 ~ 6 to 9pm
    Endeavor Elementary School, 13501 Balcombe Road, Orlando, Fl. 32837
  • Saturday, November 2, 2013 ~ 9am to Noon
    Pine Hills Community Center, 6408 Jennings Road, Orlando, FL 32818
  • Saturday, September 7, 2013 ~ 1 to 4pm
    Internal Operations Center, 450 East South Street, Orlando, FL 32801

Special Topics Class Schedule
You may wish to attend one or all of the following courses:

  • Emergency Resource Management ~ Saturday, June 8, 2013 ~ 1 to 4pm
    Internal Operations Center, 450 East South Street, Orlando, FL 32801
  • Community Place Making ~ Saturday, June 29, 2013 ~ 9am to Noon
    Internal Operations Center, 450 East South Street, Orlando, FL 32801
  • Reshaping the Urban Form ~ Saturday, September 7, 2013 ~ 9am to Noon
    DRMP Headquarters in Baldwin Park, 941 Lake Baldwin Lane, Orlando, FL 32814
  • Mobility Planning ~ Wednesday, November 13, 2013  ~ 6 to 9pm
    East Orange Community Center, 12050 East Colonial Drive, Orlando, FL 32826

Sign-in begins a half hour before class starts. Light refreshments will be served.

For more information please call Orange County Neighborhood Preservation and Revitalization Division at 407-836-5606, or email us at ocneighborhoods@ocfl.net.