Regional and Intergovernmental Planning

The APA Regional and Intergovernmental Planning Division identifies, analyzes, and promotes best practices to guide local, regional, state, and federal governments' interdependent involvement in community planning and development. RIPD's primary focus is on state and regional activities that support coordinated planning and implementation strategies in megaregional, metropolitan, micropolitan, and rural areas.

2017 was a pivotal year for RIPD, beginning in January with publication of Emerging Trends in Regional Planning (PAS 586). The report, reflecting division members' expertise and edited by division leaders, received an APA Division Achievement Award for its contribution to the planning profession.

The division will continue to lead the field of regional and intergovernmental planning as new trends emerge. Priority areas of interest include:

  • Livable Communities. At the division's annual Regional Livable Communities Forum, now in its fifth year, regional planners share information about how their agencies and MPOs bolster local governments' efforts to implement regional plan strategies. Examples include small grants and technical assistance programs that support station-area planning, zoning updates, health impact assessments, and other innovative land use and transportation strategies. Others provide capital funds, performance metrics, or program resources to aid pioneering projects that align with long-range regional goals. The Lincoln Institute of Land Policy is our division's supporting partner in this one-day event.
  • Climate Change and Integrated Water Management. Water issues are an increasingly important aspect of regional and intergovernmental planning. Because of climate change, communities and regions may be faced with serious water problems: too much, too little, too polluted, or too hard to reach. In 2018, RIPD will begin work on a handbook of regional best practices to address these serious issues.
  • Arts and Culture. A number of regional planning agencies have initiated programs to promote arts and culture. Often these programs are tied to transit and transit-oriented development projects, and they may aim to promote equity and cultural diversity. In partnership with APA's Arts and Planning Interest Group, RIPD is working to identify such programs and promote their best practices.

2020 Regional Livable Communities Forum

This year's Regional Livable Communities Forum will be held on April 24, 2020, the day before the National Planning Conference begins in Houston. The forum is an opportunity to build stronger networks among planners doing regional work across the country.

Join the Regional and Intergovernmental Planning Division