Thursday Sessions

8:45 a.m. to 10:00 a.m.

A1: APA Ambassadors Bring Planning to the Young People - PRESENTATION

As a child, you probably heard of engineering or architecture as professions, but did you ever hear about planning? APA’s Ambassador program is a volunteer effort to increase understanding of the power of planning, and ultimately to diversify our profession. FHI is the sole Connecticut-based planning firm with a team of Ambassadors, who will lead this dynamic session, sharing tips and tricks on how to interest the uninitiated in planning! CM: 1.25.

  • Shawna Kitzman, AICP, Senior Planner and Designer, Fitzgerald & Halliday, Inc.
  • Marcy Miller, AICP, Senior Project Manager, Fitzgerald & Halliday, Inc.
  • Shawn Callaghan, PSS, Project Manager, Fitzgerald & Halliday, Inc.


A2: Re-Envisioning A Post-Industrial City Through Urban Agriculture - PRESENTATION

This session will explore innovative ways to improve the quality of life of residents, including progressive urban agriculture policy, creative reuse of existing structures, converting unused city-owned lots into spaces for community food production, and the inclusion of historically marginalized immigrant communities. Brockton, MA is highlighted as a case study. CM: 1.25.

  • Andrew Kilduff, Principal, TK.designlab
  • Tim Tensen, Principal, TK.designlab
  • Rob May, Director of Planning and Economic Development, City of Brockton, MA 


A3: Score Points for Your Planning - Embrace Equity, Economy, and the Environment in Sustainable CT

Sustainable CT is a voluntary certification program to accelerate municipal sustainability actions.  Learn about the importance of pursuing equity in sustainability work, hear planning success stories from municipalities participating in Sustainable CT, and learn about the National Network of Statewide-Local Sustainability Organizations.  CM: 1.25.

  • Alyssa Norwood, Energy Technical Specialist at Eastern Connecticut State University, Sustainable CT 
  • Martin Connor, AICP, City Planner, City of Torrington, CT
  • David Fink, Consultant for Partnership for Strong Communities
  • Khara Dodds, AICP, Director of Planning and Land Use Services, Town of Glastonbury, CT  


A4: Building a Municipal Broadband Solution - PRESENTATION 1, PRESENTATION 2, PRESENTATION 3

Despite billions of dollars spent to bridge gaps left by market-driven solutions, many communities are underserved when it comes to broadband. Hear about the experiences of three communities at various stages in the process of generating a municipally-managed or contracted solution to provide more connectivity. Learn about the technical, financial, and political opportunities and challenges. CM: 1.25.

  • John C. Lunt, General Manager, Greenfield Community Energy and Technology
  • MJ Adams, Economic Development Director / CDBG, Town of Greenfield, MA
  • Mark Howell, Chief Information Officer, Town of Concord, MA


A5: Transit and Transit-Oriented Development in the Naugatuck Valley - Restoring Balance to Connecticut’s Most Neglected Corridor - PRESENTATION

The Naugatuck Valley is one of the nation’s oldest manufacturing regions and played a large role in ushering in America's Industrial Revolution. This session will demonstrate how the integration of rail and bus transit and land use can enable a shift of travel choice to more sustainable modes; specifically, how investments in transit and transit-oriented development can improve the economic vitality of the Valley’s historic towns and cities. CM: 1.25.

  • Mark C. Nielsen, Director of Planning / Assistant Director, Naugatuck Valley Council of Governments, CT
  • Stephen A. Gazillo, AICP, Market Sector Lead, Transportation Planning, New England Region, AECOM
  • David V. Sousa, ASLA, AICP, Senior Planner/Landscape Architect, CDM Smith
10:15 a.m. to 11:15 a.m. -  Keynote Speaker

11:30 a.m. to 12:45 p.m.

B1: Let's Talk About It - How Canton, MA is Leveraging Redevelopment of a Former Industrial Site to Create a Mixed-Use Destination Rooted in Its Past - PRESENTATION

Using a talk-show format, panelists will reveal the 200+ year history of the site that is coming to be known as the Paul Revere Heritage Site.  The panelists and audience will discuss the challenges and opportunities in mixed-use redevelopment to catalyze revitalization and create new public assets. CM: 1.25.

  • James Stevens, Senior Associate, ConsultEcon, Inc.
  • Laura Smead, AICP, Town Planner, Town of Canton, MA
  • Vic Del Vechio, Chair, Paul Revere Heritage Commission, Town of Canton, MA
  • Tom Scully, Vice-Chair, Paul Revere Heritage Commission; Chair, Planning Board, Town of Canton, MA
  • George Comeau, Member of Paul Revere Heritage Commission, Historical Commission, Town of Canton, MA
  • Liz Francis, Director, Parks & Recreation Department; Member, Paul Revere Heritage Commission, Town of Canton, MA


B2: Start with Planning - CCAPA’s Insights and Technical Focus on the Connecticut Recovery

This is an important time for planners to reinforce our state's core values, accelerate our pace of work, and build up a team approach to problem-solving.  Start with Planning, a CCAPA program supported by the APA, introduces new policies concerning economic development, transportation, resiliency, conservation, and housing, as well as technical resources for community planning. Panelists will review work products completed to date, discuss feedback from outreach activities, and engage the audience on follow-up and implementation.  CM: 1.25.

  • Michael Piscitelli, AICP, Deputy Economic Development Administrator, City of New Haven, CT 
  • John Guszkowski, AICP, LEED-AP, ENV-SP, Lead Planner, Community Development Group, CME Associates Inc.
  • Emmeline Harrigan, AICP, Assistant Planning Director, Town of Fairfield, CT
  • Amanda Kennedy, AICP, Assistant Director / Director of Special Projects, Southeastern Connecticut Council of Governments, CT
  • Ken Livingston, AICP, Principal / Vice President, Fitzgerald & Halliday, Inc.
  • Erin Wilson, AICP, Director of Economic Development, City of Torrington, CT


B3: Thinking Outside the Traditional Downtown Box - PRESENTATION

Downtowns are making a big comeback, but their primary purpose has shifted.  Most downtowns in small- or medium-sized communities no longer serve primarily as retail centers but rather depend on other uses to spur economic vitality.  Three community-driven examples of downtown activity generators will be highlighted:  WORK_SPACE, a municipally managed meeting center, art gallery and coworking space in Manchester, CT; the Complex Performing Arts Center and Block 134, a performance arts venue and center for creative businesses in Putnam, CT; and, the Meriden Green, a 14-acre flood control/park and economic development project located in Meriden, CT.  CM: 1.25.

  • Gary Anderson, AICP, Director of Planning and Economic Development, Town of Manchester, CT
  • Stacey Zackin, Manager, WORK_SPACE Coworking and Meeting Center
  • Delpha Very, Director of Economic and Community Development, Town of Putnam, CT
  • Juliet Burdelski, Director of Economic Development, City of Meriden, CT


B4: Rallying the Troops - Creative Approaches to Building Community Buy-In and Leadership - PRESENTATION

This session will introduce participants to community engagement and capacity-building techniques that build ownership and excitement within an organization or community. Following the presentation, community engagement specialists will lead a small-group work session to work with participants to provide ideas and suggestions for tackling their current community engagement challenges. CM: 1.25.

  • Michelle Moon, Fairmount Greenway Project Manager
  • Alison LeFlore, AICP, Planning Consultant
  • Adrianne Schaefer-Borrego, Planning Consultant
  • Allentza Mitchel, Powerful Pathways Principal


B5:  Seeing the 'Unseen' in Devens, MA - A Biometric Study to Understand the ‘Unconscious' Human Experience of a New Development - PRESENTATION

In this pilot study, we assess a new residential development using software that tracks how people view buildings and streetscapes. Data from images, assessed with emulation software (3M’s Visual Attention Software), show how elements of a new residential street draw the eye and can predict ease of walkability and way-finding. CM: 1.25.

  • Justin B. Hollander, PhD, AICP, Associate Professor, Tufts University 
  • Ann Sussman, AIA, Researcher
  • Peter Lowitt, FAICP, Director, Devens Enterprise Commission, MA
  • Neil Angus, AICP, Environmental Planner, Devens Enterprise Commission, MA



1:00 p.m. to 2:15 p.m. - Networking Lunch and Student Mentor Lunch


2:15 p.m. to 3:45 p.m.

C1: Land Use Law Developments of the Last Year - PRESENTATION

Leading land use lawyers from CT, MA and RI will address national developments in law over the last year, including court decisions, legislation, agency programs, principles and procedures, as well as emerging trends. CM 1.5 Law.

  • John M. Boehnert, Esq., Law Offices of John M. Boehnert LTD
  • Pamela J. Brown, Esq., FAICP, Brown & Brown PC
  • Gregor I. McGregor, Esq., McGregor & Legere, P.C.
  • Kathleen M. O’Donnell, Esq.
  • Marjorie Shansky, Esq.


C2:  Resiliency by Design - PRESENTATION

Resiliency by Design combines regional regulatory tools, traditional planning, 3-D modeling, and geodesign in scenario planning for stronger community engagement in support of compact-form zoning reform. CM 1.5.

  • Heather Harper, Chief of Staff, Cape Cod Commission, MA
  • Chloe Schaefer, Community Design Planner, Cape Cod Commission, MA
  • Jennifer Clinton, Special Projects Coordinator, Cape Cod Commission, MA
  • Leslie Richardson, Chief Economic Development Officer, Cape Cod Commission
  • Paul Lagg, Town Planner, Town of Eastham, MA
  • Corey Pacheco, Assistant Town Planner, Town of Falmouth, MA
  • Tom Bott, Town Planner, Town of Falmouth, MA


C3: Role-Play - Implementing Nature-Based Climate Resilience Projects - PRESENTATION

Engineers and architects want to include climate resiliency into development projects, but it’s not easy being green. Learn about current policy and permitting challenges and savvy ways to overcome them. Have fun during our hands-on role-play exercise to design and permit a nature-based resilient project! CM: 1.5. 

  • Julie Conroy, AICP, Senior Environmental Planner, Fort Point Associates
  • Cara Pattullo, Environmental Planner, Fort Point Associates
  • Jill Valdés Horwood, JD, LLM, Director of Policy, Boston Harbor Now
  • Mia G. Mansfield, Climate Ready Boston Program Manager,  Office of Environment, Energy and Open Space, City of Boston, MA
  • Deanna Moran, Director of Environmental Planning, Conservation Law Foundation


C4: The Last Mile - Bicycle and Pedestrian Connections to Transit - PRESENTATION

Every transit trip is multimodal, with walking or biking important components. A panel of municipal, consultant, and regional planners will present a toolbox of bicycle and pedestrian treatments for improving connections to transit. Planners will learn how to apply improvements at real locations through a group activity. CM: 1.5.

  • Shayne M. Trimbell, AICP, Director of Transit Planning, Southeastern Regional Transit Authority, MA
  • Sandra Clarey, Project Manager, McMahon Associates
  • Natalie Raffol, AICP, Senior Project Transportation Planner, McMahon Associates
  • Tabitha Harkin, City Planner, City of New Bedford, MA


C5:  Mini Plans with Many Partners - Forming Collaborative Partnerships and Manageable Action Plans to Kick-Start Complete Streets Implementation - PRESENTATION

Collaboratively assembling short and manageable action plans can foster effective partnerships between multiple disciplines (including those that don’t traditionally cooperate) and kick-start the sustainable plan implementation process. Panelists will share their experiences as to how leveraging the unique partnerships and mini-action plans created at the "Step it Up! Walkability Action Institute" sparked the implementation of complete street programs in Hartford, CT and Portland, ME. CM: 1.5.

  • Anna M. Bergeron, Transportation Planner II, Office of Intermodal Planning, Bureau Of Policy and Planning, Connecticut Department of Transportation 
  • Emily Hultquist, AICP, Principal Planner and Policy Analyst, Capitol Region Council of Governments, CT
  • Tim Malone, Principal Planner, Capitol Region Council of Governments, CT
  • Zoe Miller, Project Manager and Public Health Specialist, Greater Portland Council of Governments, ME
  • Paul Niehoff, Portland Area Comprehensive Transportation System (PACTS)
  • Steven J. Huleatt, MPH, RS, Director of Health, West Hartford-Bloomfield Health District, CT


4:00 p.m. to 5:15 p.m.

D1:  How to Build a Coalition for Economic Development Around a Transportation Project - A Case Study of the Broad Street Regeneration Initiative - PRESENTATION

Learn about a successful collaborative effort involving multiple municipalities, agencies, and nonprofit partners with an $11.5 million DOT project to revamp a central commercial corridor. With a thorough understanding of this case study, participants will be able to apply similar ideas and principles to one of their own current or future projects. CM: 1.25.

  • Jillian Finkle, Principal Planner, City of Central Falls, RI
  • Robert Billington, President, Blackstone Valley Tourism Council
  • C.J. Opperthauser, Training Manager, Grow Smart RI  
  • Peter Friedrichs, Director of Innovative Initiatives, The Policastro Group


D2:  Right-Sizing Affordable Housing Projects for Your Community - PRESENTATION

This session will look at how affordable housing can be developed in small communities through partnerships.  The Housing Connection Program of Connecticut provides technical support and works with community leaders to help develop affordable housing that is appropriately sized for the community. CM: 1.25.

  • Jonathan M. Cabral, AICP, Manager in Planning, Research, and Evaluation, Connecticut Housing Finance Authority 
  • Diane L. Smith, Director of Planning, Research, and Evaluation, Connecticut Housing Finance Authority
  • Jim Horan, Executive Director, Connecticut Statewide Local Initiatives Support Corporation
  • Jocelyn Ayer, Community and Economic Development Director, Northwest Hills Council of Governments, CT
  • Kate Johnson, Board Chair, Foundation of Norfolk Living


D3: Reinventing and Reconnecting Hartford’s Union Station Area - PRESENTATION

Fifty years ago, I-84 cut a scar through Hartford, separating employment centers and neighborhoods from Union Station, Downtown, and Bushnell Park. A transformative reconstruction of I-84 and Union Station will reconnect Hartford’s people and places with a walkable station district. Discover creative solutions emerging from a complex and collaborative planning process.  CM: 1.25.

  • David Spillane, AICP, RIBA, Principal, Goody Clancy
  • Kevin Burnham, PE, Transportation Engineer/Consultant Design, Connecticut Department of Transportation
  • Sandra Fry, Principal Planner, City of Hartford, CT 
  • Casey R. Hardin, PE, Project Manager, TranSystems


D4: Complete Streets from a Higher Perspective - Using Drones to Capture the Big Picture - PRESENTATION

Attendees will learn how drone technology and advanced data analysis can be used to comprehensively evaluate real-time traffic operations along a heavily travelled commercial corridor. A detailed analysis of complex traffic patterns supports both an informed public engagement process and the development of innovative complete streets alternatives.  CM: 1.25.

  • Meghan A. Sloan, AICP, Planning Director, Connecticut Metropolitan Council of Governments (MetroCOG), CT
  • James R. Wendt, AICP, Planning Director, Town of Fairfield, CT
  • Michael Morehouse, PE, Vice President, Fitzgerald & Halliday, Inc. 


D5: Special Conference Session - Can We Meet? Mastering Successful Meetings - PRESENTATION

What makes successful meetings?  Planners spend endless hours at meetings with our boards, commissions, committees, and beyond. From formal public hearings to citizen workshops, many ingredients are required to ensure that meetings are successful. How can we plan and run effective meetings and educate our citizen boards to do the same? Bring your success (and horror!) stories. We’ll all discuss best practices, legal requirements, tips and techniques, and strategies for mastering the public meeting milieu. This Special Session is brought to you by the SNEAPA conference committee. CM: 1.25

  • Bob Mitchell, FAICP, Planning Consultant, MA
  • Krista Moravec, AICP, Senior Planner, Horsley Witten Group,RI
  • Christopher Smith, Partner, Shipman & Goodwin LLP, CT
  • Jennifer West, Coastal Training Program Coordinator, Narragansett Bay Research Reserve, RI