Envisioning the Future of Urban Planning

Updated: Apr 3, 2020

Interested in having a peek into the future of urban planning? Then listen to this podcast episode on POV (Planning & Organizational Visioning). Show host James Rausse interviews Leonardo Vazquez, AICP/PP, on his role at the dawn of the creative placemaking movement (as a term and a practice) a decade ago. In this discussion, Vazquez describes his reaction to the professional biases and conditions that existed in the profession, circumstances that simultaneously marginalized him and inspired him to co-create a new model for the field and found The National Consortium for Creative Placemaking. In 2008, as the then Director of The Leading Institute at the Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy, Vazquez wrote, "Leading From the Middle: Strategic Thinking for Planning and Community Development Professionals."

The book is a guide for urban planners and community development professionals who want to leverage their position in the "middle" to achieve thoughtful and just collaboration. He also co-edited, "Diálogos: Placemaking in Latino Communities" (with Michael Rios and Lucrezia Miranda) and founded NCCP in 2012 and has spent the past several years developing the emerging field of creative placemaking through Creative Placemaking Leadership Summits, webinars, podcasts, and other modalities. The organization reaches across sectors and into the fields of community and economic development, arts administration, design, engineering, architecture, and philanthropy. It also offers an ever-evolving model for collaboration between community volunteers, elected officials, artists others who share a passion for arts, culture, and social justice.

In this discussion he shares some of his incipient thoughts on how the field may evolve in the future through a model he describes as, "adaptive." Click below to listen for yourself.

Written by Andrea Orlando, Community Director at The National Consortium for Creative Placemaking. Contact her at

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