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OV receives state award for public outreach

November 12, 2014

On November 6, the Town of Oro Valley received an award for Best Public Outreach General/Comprehensive Plan category from the Arizona Chapter of the American Planning Association (APA), for its work on Phase 1—Let’s Talk—of the Your Voice, Our Future project. Your Voice, Our Future is the Town’s general plan update, as required every ten years by Arizona state statute.

The Arizona Chapter of the APA annually honors Arizonans who have made “outstanding planning achievements to the planning profession and their communities. The APA Arizona awards program is an important service to the membership for statewide recognition and celebration of the outstanding work of professional planners, citizen planners and others in making our communities a better place to live.”

In September this year, the Town of Oro Valley also received the national 2014 Silver Circle Award in Citizen Participation from the City-County Communications and Marketing Association (3CMA), for the Your Voice, Our Future Public Participation Plan.

Background
In accordance with state statute, the Town of Oro Valley needed to update its General Plan, which will guide and inform critical decisions about the Town’s future. It was critical that the early stages of public participation be inclusive and community-driven, so the Town’s award-winning, Council-adopted Public Participation Plan for Your Voice, Our Future was developed and implemented during Phase 1 of the project with great success.

Summary of outreach efforts
• 60 community events
• 1,964 online visitors
• 2,606 Post-it note comments
• 282 online comments at YourVoiceOV.com
• 886 comments from youth (ages 14-18)
• 577 surveys completed
• 116 ideas posted online
• 18 appearances in print media and five press releases

Next steps

The result of Phase 1 of the Your Voice, Our Future project was the Council-approved Vision and Guiding Principles, which will serve as a framework for the rest of the process, resulting in the updated General Plan, which will go to voters in November 2016.

Public participation is still welcome. Visit www.YourVoiceOV.com to track the General Plan Update progress and join the community conversation on the latest versions of the work being done by citizen committees.