I need to pick The Throbbing BrainTM.
We had a consultant generate a plan for the redevelopment of 1/3 of the community. Mostly, pre-1920 construction, old urban form. Now, we have this plan and a commission assigned to put the pieces together to develop form-based new urbansim based codes and design guidelines. This overhaul is signifcant in that we are abandoning our euclidian zoning on the old portion of town and identifying design specs for roads, sidewalks, and private sites. The commission is interested in showing an immediate progress and is torn between tackling the entire study area at once or choosing those districts that have the most momentum. One school of that wants a comprehensive and seemless set of design rules, developed all at once for the entire area, one school wants to tailor the design code for each district and work on the districts piece by piece eventually tying the whole study area together.
I'm having trouble convincing the commission that before they issue an RFP to get guidelines made, they need to understand what they need. They need to understand what specific solutions they are looking for each district. Right now the commission believes, "Staff is incapable of delivering these guidelines. We need a high-profile consultant to do the work. We already know what we want... good design guidelines."
I keep thinking the commission should be educating themselves on what each districts unique built design is... I even encouraged the commission to perform a survey, develop built-as guidelines and have architecture students develop sites based upon the built-as guidelines. It was ignored. I just need help to get them to understand their request better and be able to critically select the proper consultant.