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Academy Information

The Citizens’ Planning Academy is a dynamic and interactive program intended to provide residents with a background in the fundamentals of city planning. Future members of City Council, boards and commissions, along with neighborhood leaders and active citizens enroll to learn more about the nuts and bolts of city planning and engage in lively discussions about how city planning helps to shape our community.

The approach is simple. At each session, respected local professionals – land use planners, designers, attorneys and others – speak with participants about a specific topic. We will cover how a community creates a vision, the purpose of zoning and subdivision regulations, the challenges of site planning for infill development, the importance of planning for a range of transportation options, and other interesting hot topics.

Following each scheduled presentation, time is set aside for questions and answers. The Citizens’ Planning Academy will not advocate particular solutions; rather this will be an opportunity to dig a little deeper into the topic of the day and to hear more about the different perspectives on a specific issue.

At the end of the Citizens’ Planning Academy, participants will have gained a better understanding of the legal aspects of planning, will understand how the city planning process works, and will have had the chance to be a part of a dialogue between residents and the City about Lakewood’s future. At the final session, participants will get a chance to play a part in a mock public hearing — always a highlight for the Academy!

Class Schedule Info

Participants have been selected from the submitted applications and classes have begun!


Classes are held on Thursdays, from 5:30 p.m. until 9 p.m. at the City of Lakewood Municipal Center, 480 S. Allison Parkway, South Building, 2nd floor Employee Relations Conference Room.


Session #  




  September 4th   Introduction to Planning & Community Vision

Session 1 Information

     -Tom Quinn, Council Member Ward 4
     - Julia Kirkpatrick - Chair, Planning Commission 

Participant Map

Community Vision - Jeff Winston
   - Presentation
   - Comprehensive Plan Checklist
   - 2014 Hands-On Exercise
   - Sheridan Boulevard Strategic Plan
   - Sheridan Blvd Station Area Plan
   - Molholm Area Neighborhood Plan

Mr. Winston spoke about several items written by
Jeff Speck.  For more reading see his website.

Homework for Session 2

1)   - What's My Zoning?
Using our system, find the zone district of your home address and look for 
the zone district and find your Schedule Number. By visiting that link you 
should be able to find the size of your property (in square feet).  

2)   - Read the Sheridan Boulevard Station Area Plan

Extra Credit - Attend the September 17th Planning Commission Meeting.
A rezoning application is being heard that evening.  See how your fellow 
citizens review a request to change the allowed land uses from residential
to commercial.


  September 18th   Zoning and Subdivision

Session 2 Information

Zoning and Subdivision Presentation - Tom Ragonetti
   - Presentation

Homework for Session 3

Assignment #1

Think about your daily travel patterns...
  • How many trips per day do you make in your vehicle?
    A trip is:
    • From home to grocery store = 1 trip
    • From grocery store to home = 1 trip
         If you drive from home to the store and back, that is 2 trips.


  • Estimate how much time you spend a month in your car.
  • Pick one of your frequent destinations and figure out how you could
    travel from home to the destination:
    • On foot
    • Using public transit
    • By bicycle
  • What are the obstacles or inconveniences of traveling to your 
    destination on foot or by bicycle or public transit?

Assignment #2

Visit the website and view a few of their "Moving Beyond the Automobile" video series. (Each of these videos is between 3 and 6 minutes long).


Moving Beyond the Automobile


Other short videos to view and think about:
Video 1 (under 2 minutes long)
Video 2 (16 minutes long)



  September 25th   Transportation Planning

Session 3 Information

Creating Livable Communities Presentation
   - V. Auriemma Presentation

Homework for Session 4

Based on our discussions with Vince and Carlos, please drive, bike, or walk to the following streets and
evaluate them:
  • 38th Avenue from Wadsworth Blvd to Sheridan Blvd
  • Garrison St from Florida Ave to Jewell Ave
  • Then, the location of the hands-on exercise and evaluate
    • 10th Ave, 9th Ave, and Sheridan Blvd
Finally, read this Why Do Site Plan Review? article




  October 9th   Hands-On Site Planning Exercise


For this session, Class is being held at:
Lakewood Heritage Center
Visitor's Building
Orchard Room
801 S Yarrow St
Lakewood, CO 80226

Visit the Google Maps link for directions.

Session 4 Information

   - Site Design Work Session Presentation

Homework for Session 5

Please read the following web pages:
City Prevails in Law Suit

City Council denies variance request from Aspen builder

Land Fight in Telluride, Colo., enters 11th hour


  October 23rd   Legal Issues

For this session, Class is being held at:
Civic Center South
480 S Allison Parkway
Employee Relations Training Room
2nd Floor

Session 5 Information

Planning Law with Bob Widner
   - Presentation

Session 6 Homework

Sample Public Hearing Video
     - Click on Ordinance O-2013-015 to get right to the rezoning portion.  The video is 28 minutes long, but will give you an idea how the hearing before City Council (or Planning Commission) is conducted.  



  October 30th   Graduation and Mock Hearing

For our final session, we begin with dinner at:
Lakewood Cultural Center
Civic Center North
470 S Allison Parkway
Community Room

Let us know how we did!  Please take our Evaluation on Survey Monkey.



CPA Site Plan Exercise 1CPA Site Plan Exercise 2CPA Site Plan Exercise 3