Saturday October 31, 2020
National Community Planning Month
8:00 AM - Until

The City of Columbia is celebrating National Community Planning Month this October.  The City of Columbia prioritizes planning, working to improve our public space and parks, planning for preservation and sustainability, and helping formalize a vision for the future of our city and our communities. National Community Planning Month is a time to highlight the important role of planning in our communities. Planning can be summed up as comprehensive, community-focused and enhancing choices. While many people may not realize it, planning has a significant impact on their day-to-day life. From where they live, to how they commute, to the type of home they live in, planning plays a vital role in a person’s life and well-being. 


This year, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, our celebration will be virtual.  Please follow us on Twitter and Facebook @ColaCompass to partake in our month-long celebration of planning!  You can also learn more about the national celebration by visiting .


Planners help create communities of lasting value. Planning helps leverage public and private funds that lead to business growth, job creation, and economically resilient communities.

Planners are skilled at balancing the varied interests and viewpoints that emerge as a community plans its future. Planners consider what is best for the entire community – senior citizens, workers, children, people living with disabilities, business owners, and elected officials. How do they arrive at these community-wide decisions? Through conversations with residents and thoughtful outreach to community stakeholders.

Planners work for the greater good. Planners work with professionals from different fields such as public health, recreation and engineering to make communities safer, stronger, and healthier. Planning does not stop at a geographic border.  Communities are served best when planners take a broader viewpoint, encompassing regional and statewide perspectives. 

Planners have the unique expertise to comprehensively address the impacts of today’s actions on tomorrow’s communities. Planners do not just focus on where to locate (or site) a building, but also consider how that decision impacts the safety of the community, the existing character of the community, how it impacts the environmental resiliency, and if the decision encourages social and economic diversity. 


What is National Community Planning Month? 

Established in 2006, National Community Planning Month is celebrated each October as a way to highlight the role of planners and the importance of good planning in our communities. Across the country, communities celebrate planning through a variety of avenues including have a mayoral proclamation declaring October as community planning month; planning department open houses; community tours of APA designated Great Places in America; or photo contests. Planning is essential for our communities to prosper and maintain balance and cohesiveness. 

Each year, a theme is identified to help a community highlight an aspect or outcome of planning. The theme can be used to organize events and activities within the community. The 2020 theme is Planning Is Essential to Recovery — this theme highlights how planning and planners can lead communities to equitable, resilient, and long-lasting recovery from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

For more information about community planning efforts, visit  and . You can also contact the Planning and Development Services Department at 803-545-3222.