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MiCNU will periodically come across connections to strengthen our communities through job postings or local intiatives.  These connections provide opportunities for urbanists and city builders to become involved in the unique places that are represented in the Lake Belt.  Links and brief descriptions of these opportunities will be posted on this page. 


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Job Opportunity, Kalamazoo, Michigan for Planner 1 Position (posted January 6, 2023)

OPENING DATE: January 4, 2023


CLOSING DATE: January 20, 2023


LOCATION: Planning Division, 245 North Rose Street, Kalamazoo, Michigan


DEPARTMENT: Community Planning & Economic Development


Description/Distinguishing Features: The primary role of the Planner is development review. This includes working with applicants through the multiple stages of development – from idea to closing out the finished site plan – and with both very experienced and first-time developers. The Planner is the manager of the Site Plan Review Process. This critical process is run administratively and includes staff
from departments across the City that come together weekly to support the development process. The Planner runs this committee, facilitating the review of all projects. The Planner must have a strong background in planning and zoning, but also familiarity with building codes, utilities, streets, and stormwater functions. In addition to site plan review, the Planner attends the regular Projects Meetings
designed to support development projects in their early stages. The Planner’s role in the development process is critical and requires attention to detail, the ability to facilitate large group meetings, and skill in guiding conversations in order to reach a consensus or understanding of next steps. The Planner also supports the administration of the zoning code, working with the Zoning Administrator and Code Inspectors.

The Planning Division is part of the Community Planning and Economic Development (CPED). The division leads community engagement across the City; is the primary keeper of the Master Plan, supporting its implementation across all departments; supports Public Services with transportation projects; and administers, updates, and supports development policies from zoning to historic preservation to Brownfield Redevelopment. Within Planning, there are staff who focus on short-range, everyday planning and development support and staff who focus on medium and long-range planning and engagement.

Examples of Duties:

  •  Guiding applicants through the Site Plan Review Process

  •  Coordinating the review of projects by staff both within and outside of the Community Planning and Economic Development Department

  •  Attending development review meetings

  •  Meeting with prospective developers – big and small

  •  Working with applicants to troubleshoot development hurdles

  •  Review plans and provide clear feedback

  •  Site inspections as necessary to support projects moving through the development process


Minimum Qualifications:

  • A bachelor's degree in urban planning, geography, landscape architecture, geography, urban design, or a related field; master's degree preferred. AICP certification is a plus.

  • Three or more years of planning experience that includes plan review and meeting facilitation.

  • Strong communication skills and ability to discuss and write on complicated topics in a way that is easily understood by both experienced developers and the average resident.

  • Out-of-the-box, critical thinker with a willingness to develop new techniques, and turn the critical review lens on internal processes and activities.

  • Understanding the development pro-formas and ability to speak engineering and design a plus.

  • Ability to say no while offering alternatives and/or next steps.

  • Understanding of the concepts from Congress of New Urbanism, Smart Growth America, Project for Public Spaces, and other similar best practices with training in form-based codes, public engagement, and urban design through such certifications by the Form-based Code Institute (FBCI), National Charrette Institute (NCI), Congress for New Urbanism (CNU), or American Planners Association/Michigan Association of Planners or similar is plus.

  • Understanding the greater community vision of Kalamazoo (currently Imagine Kalamazoo 2025) and how it influences all work in the Planning Division.

  • Working knowledge of GIS, Adobe Creative Suite, Microsoft Office, and databases.

To apply for the position, click here.

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