APA National Resources: Planning Advisory Service Quick Notes 2023

APA National’s Knowledge Center's Quick Notes (QN) briefing papers are developed by APA National’s Planning Advisory Service (PAS). The PAS is APA National’s research brand that has developed curated content and research on planning issues since 1949. PAS’ QN publications provide concise overviews of planning issues and fundamentals to public officials (i.e. elected officials) and engaged citizenry (i.e. members of neighborhood associations). Provision of these briefs to these individuals can enhance the quality of civic engagement and dialogue which can result in more effective outcomes in the plans and policies planners craft.

New PAS QN briefs of interest to chapter members include:

  • ChatGPT: Implications for Planning. Recent years have seen growing interest in the impact of digital technologies, such as artificial intelligence (AI), on planning practice. Although AI capabilities have been building over many decades, the release of ChatGPT by OpenAI in November 2022 brought AI writing capabilities into the mainstream overnight. ChatGPT and other large language models (LLMs) are powerful tools that will augment planners' abilities to govern cities and places. Their capabilities have significant implications for planning work, and it is important for planners to be aware of both the positive and negative factors.
  • Urban Heat Resilience. Heat is the deadliest weather-related hazard in the United States, posing a growing and inequitable threat to human health, infrastructure, and economic and ecological systems. Communities are getting hotter due to climate change and the urban heat island (UHI) effect. Cities across the country must prepare for unprecedented heat and address systemic inequities in heat risk. Planners considering urban heat resilience should work to help their communities equitably prepare for and adapt to both chronic and acute heat risk through heat mitigation and management. Heat mitigation includes design and planning strategies that aim to reduce the built environment’s contribution to urban heat, whereas heat management strategies prepare for and respond to heat.
  • Managing Shared-Use Micromobility. Shared-use micromobility is a transportation strategy that allows users to share vehicles that are relatively low in weight and maximum speed (e.g., bicycles and scooters), reducing the need for vehicle ownership to complete both routine and special trips. It accommodates short-distance travel, complements fixed public transit lines, and offers accessible, environmentally friendly alternatives to personal automobiles. But to maximize benefits and minimize potential nuisance issues, local officials and planners must consider how best to introduce and implement shared-use micromobility in their communities.

Hawaii Chapter members, PAS is actively looking for authorities in our profession to contribute to the QN series. Sharing your expertise can provide a positive contribution to our profession and community. If you’re interested, the PAS has outlined guidelines for contributors. Potential contributors are encouraged to provide a brief on topics that haven’t already been covered. Please consult PAS’ QN archive for a list of these topics.