On Site Workshops

MAP training is available to your community year-round through our on-site workshop program. At an on-site workshop an instructor comes to your location, at a time and date convenient for your participants, and presents a comprehensive educational program, addressing the specific needs of your community. Workshop descriptions are below or you can view a printable brochure.  

To see if there is an event scheduled near your community, check out our Event calendar.  

Virtual workshops are an option and can save dollars and time.  Please contact Amy Vansen at [email protected] if you are interested in hosting one of our workshops

For more information, contact Amy Vansen at [email protected], or (734) 913-2000.

Workshop Descriptions

Planning and Zoning Essentials (Basic Training)

This information-packed program is perfect for new planning commissioners and zoning board of appeals members, but it's also a great refresher course for more experienced officials or elected officials looking to learn more about these boards. Roles and responsibilities of the board, site plan review, comprehensive planning, zoning ordinances, planned unit developments, and standards for decision-making are all on the agenda.


 Zoning Administration

The zoning administrator is responsible for ensuring the integrity and effectiveness of the zoning process and for the public support it receives.  Since he or she is often the initial contact with affected property owners, intelligent administration and enforcement conducted with sensitivity to public relations is essential. This program is for zoning administrators in rural, suburban, or urban settings as well as municipal officials, other staff members, or citizens interested in a more complete understanding of all facets of zoning administration.  

Planning Commissioner Toolkit

The Planning Commission plays a pivotal role in the development of a community.  This workshop explains all of the Planning Commission duties from the master plan to site plan review and everything in between.  How to conduct a meeting, handling difficult cases and conflict of interest are also reviewed.  


Zoning Board of Appeals

Quasi-judicial functions of the zoning process are handled by the Zoning Board of Appeals. This interactive, case study based workshop goes into greater depth on the issues of practical difficulty and unnecessary hardship. A  summary of voting and membership requirements and other procedural requirements unique to ZBA operations are reviewed.

Site Plan Review

This program will demonstrate the site plan review and approval process and provide practical tools and techniques on how to read a site plan. You'll discuss site design principles, such as pedestrian and traffic considerations, lighting, utilities, ADA compliance, inspections, and landscaping.  Participants in this hands-on workshop receive an engineering scale, turning template and a sample site plan to evaluate.


 Capital Improvements Programs

Do you know what the Planning Enabling Act says about the CIP? Do you know what should be included, and how often it should be updated? This program explains-- from start to finish-- everything you need to know to prepare and adopt a Capital Improvement Program, including: who should be involved in the Capital Improvement Program process; the accounting and budgetary requirements of a CIP; how to tie the program into your infrastructure capacity; and how to handle controversial topics.


Risk Management

As more communities face litigation related to planning and zoning decisions, this is essential training for all elected officials, planning commissioners and zoning board of appeals members. Topics include identifying a conflict of interest, applying discretionary standards during special land use reviews, reasonable expectations of a developer and how your comprehensive plan can minimize risk.


Community Engagement

Knowing which public engagement technique to use for which audience, and managing the public participation process so that all voices can be heard, all the while ensuring that the input is meaningful and relevant is one of a planner's greatest challenges.  A process that can be rife with politics, on one hand, and rewarding and beneficial on the other, is part and parcel of the effort.  This interactive session explains best practices on how to engage with community members and stakeholders in a more meaningful way. 

The Master Planning Process

Are you considering creating a new master plan or amending an existing one?  This workshop is for you!  Roll up your sleeves and learn step-by-step more about the requirements, components, and stakeholder involvement you'll need to organize when drafting or amending a master plan.  Includes community- specific demographics discussion and brief overview of community engagement principles. 


Planning for Health 

Community planners can lead the charge at the local level to develop and implement planning policies and zoning regulations for land use and a built environment that is conducive to healthy, active living.  Workshop participants will gain an understanding of how to engage the community around a vision of health; how to move plan goals and objectives to a “health in all policies” framework; how to develop and use health impact assessments; and the importance of including an implementation plan that includes zoning and other regulatory language.

Zoning Ordinance: A to Z

This workshop to provides local decision makers with everything they need to know about this important regulatory, police power tool. A brief history of zoning, alternative ways to zone, a tour of a typical zoning ordinance including tips and best practices, zoning approval processes, and enforcement are all on the agenda. 


Other training opportunities include: 

MAP's Build Your Own Workshop 

Select from a list of topics that are most relevant to the issues facing your community. Sessions range from 24 minutes to 2.5 hours.   See full descriptions here.  Contact MAP staff for group rate pricing.  

Watch On Demand, packages include three sessions.

Member Rate:  $75 | Nonmember Rate:  $100 | Student Rate:  $25

Register Here