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Thread: Urban planning career?

  1. #1
    Member
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    Jul 2008
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    Cincinnati
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    Urban planning career?

    I am interested in possibly going into urban planning but I am unsure of a few things. First, are there companies out there that's primary purpose is urban planning? Second, is urban planning mainly a localized job, meaning you work in one city or area, or can urban planners travel all over the country or even the world assisting cities in planning developments? Finally, is urban planning a dead end job or can you get a bigger and more high paying job the harder you work? Any response is appreciated.

  2. #2
    Cyburbian
    Registered
    Aug 2007
    Location
    SC
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    133
    First, are there companies out there that's primary purpose is urban planning?
    There are some consulting groups who focus on urban planning. They mostly help cities and other governments write comprehensive plans, zoning ordinances, and subdivision regulations.

    The largest employers of urban planners are city and county governments. Other major employers include architecture/engineering firms, councils of governments, state governments, the federal government, and non-profit (mostly conservation/arts/community) organizations. Planners are also occasionally hired by hospitals and colleges that are undergoing major campus expansions, businesses that are building many new locations, and other various and sundry groups.

    Second, is urban planning mainly a localized job, meaning you work in one city or area, or can urban planners travel all over the country or even the world assisting cities in planning developments?
    Because the majority of urban planning jobs are with local governments, it is mainly a localized job. However, there are companies and organizations that work on state, regional, national, and even international scales.

    Finally, is urban planning a dead end job or can you get a bigger and more high paying job the harder you work?
    It really depends. If you're working in a small community and the director has been there 10 years and has no desire to move, it could be forever before you "move up." It appears that the way many planners "move up" is by taking a higher level position in another city or state. Planning is like any other profession. The higher quality work you produce, the easier it is to "move up". As in anything else, working "harder" does not necessarily mean working "better". Get your stuff done on time, with as few errors as possible, with a professional polish, attractive design, and be innovative in your approach to difficult situations. This will generally help you get ahead almost anywhere.

    Check out the Student Lounge and Carrer Advice forums. They may have better answers to your questions.

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