invites applications for the position of:

Principal City Planner



$65,033 - $89,523 Annually






Community Planning and Economic Development – Long Range Planning Division



Crown Roller Mill, 105 Fifth Avenue South, Minneapolis






10/24/16 11:59 PM



Open to the public




In Minneapolis, we've set the bar high.  We have an award-winning parks system, clean and healthy urban lakes and Mississippi River, and are making progress toward our goals for a zero-carbon energy future.  These many accomplishments contribute to our much-praised quality-of-life setting and help answer the question "Why Minneapolis?" (right click to open link in new tab) for hundreds of thousands of people.  Part of the reason we can meet such high standards is because we are constantly planning for the future. 

CPED's Long Range Planning Division is a team of bright, creative, dedicated professionals pulling together in a collaborative, thoughtful work environment to advance the City's goals, to raise and expand public discourse, and to forge a brighter urban future – all of it with the public interest front and center. 
We've just begun putting together the next long-range citywide comprehensive plan: Minneapolis2040 (right click to open link in new tab).  In Minneapolis, the decades of central city population decline have passed into the history books and our urban population is growing again – projections show an expected growth of 15% in the next 20 years.  We want to outdo our projections and grow by 20% through a more efficient use of land, denser development patterns, expanded pedestrian, bicycle, and transit facilities, and by catalyzing a more vibrant, equitable economy – one that closes the gap on existing education and employment disparities.  And we need your help to plan this future.
We need talented, enthusiastic people with solid education and experience to join our team, pitch in, work with our communities, and to help them share their experience and point of view.  We're open to folks with varied specialties and disciplinary backgrounds. This position is perfect for an outgoing, self-starter who loves interacting with the community, learning and teaching new things, and integrating your experience and talents into the wide-ranging expertise found both inside and outside of our local government.  Most of all, planners in this position are called upon to provide and help others develop a shared vision and discernable steps for getting there.
There are two full-time positions available.  Both positions are for Principal Planners who simultaneously provide long-range planning knowledge and services to a geographic sector of the City, while sharing their talent and knowledge in one or more planning sub-disciplines on a Citywide basis.  The ideal candidate will work well in the framework of the team environment, but also be confident and capable working individually and in groups with neighborhood and community groups across our increasingly diverse population. 
Most of the time, we work a regular Monday-Friday schedule, 40 hours per week.  However, work in this position sometimes involves being out in the community in the evening or on the weekend, so we flex our time when necessary to accommodate days or weeks when we have off-hours meetings.  
In addition to our regular work activities, CPED has a proud tradition of providing opportunities to use and expand your existing skills, spend time on training, continuing education, and career development, and to build the tools, methods, and practices that make work more exciting, more effective, and more sustainable – for you and for the City.


  • Analyze, prepare, develop and present plans and projects in one or more phases of planning work.
  • Research and develop reports that evaluate public and private projects involving the full range of land use, transportation, environmental, demographic, and development issues in the City, and evaluating consistency with plans and policies of the City and metropolitan region.
  • Conduct research and analysis, write reports, make presentations and recommendations to the Planning Commission, Heritage Preservation Commission, and City Council.
  • Serve on various planning teams working on various projects and issues, including environment, transportation, land use, development, and real estate.
  • Represent the City on outside boards and commissions; represent the unit or department on internal and external committees, boards, and working groups.
  • Provide presentations of the Comprehensive Plan; facilitate discussions of the purpose and uses of the plan.
  • Initiate and lead inter-departmental responses to Mayor/City Council, convene teams, establish work plans, develop policy/program recommendations and make presentations to department heads and elected officials.
  • Provide comprehensive planning services and represent the City's planning objectives in a variety of forums.
  • Evaluate and help draft capital improvement proposals affecting the City of Minneapolis' long-range plan.
  • Provide project management and contract management for consultant services contracts.  Manage planning processes including coordination of contractor and consultants, interdisciplinary staff, stakeholders, and representatives from outside organizations.
  • Seek grants; prepare grant proposals, grant administration and grant financial management.
  • Communicate on an ongoing basis with neighborhood staff, citizens, and the private and public development community around planning and development issues.
  • Evaluate development proposals within the context of a central city of a metropolitan region.
  • Work with architects, developers and other city staff in developing conceptual designs and monitoring design development reviews.
  • Perform lead work in organizing, coordinating, monitoring development project reviews, and reviewing the work of others.
  • Take a lead role in coordinating and facilitating staff activities related to heritage preservation and development including local designation studies, context studies, reconnaissance surveys, and Section 106 reviews.
  • Research, evaluate, and communicate proposed changes to the City's Code of Ordinances.
  • Attend professional seminars and workshops to maintain current knowledge of state and national trends and developments.


Master's degree in Planning, Geography, Public Administration, Urban Design, Architecture (or a highly related field) or equivalent


Five (5) years of professional level experience in Planning, Geography, Public Administration, Architecture, or Urban Design performing duties similar to those described above.



For candidates who do not have a master’s degree, an equivalent combination of education and experience will be considered.


Desirable Qualifications -- Cultural competency:
Ability to relate and work effectively with people from diverse cultural, economic and ethnic backgrounds



·         Considerable knowledge of the scope, principles, methods, practices and procedures of various phases of city planning and development processes.

·         Considerable knowledge of quantitative and qualitative research techniques used in urban planning and urban design including the ability to collect, compile, analyze and evaluate complex data and present findings and conclusions clearly and effectively.

·         Strong analytical and critical thinking skills.

·         Strong oral, written and graphic communication skills, including those related to collaboration, influencing, relationship building and strategic integrative-thinking.

·         Proficiency in project management experience with inter-departmental and inter-agency teams.

·         Ability to manage planning processes from concept to implementation, including project management experience and contract management experience.

·         Proficiency in time management, including managing multiple complex projects simultaneously.

·         Experience in developing and writing grant proposals, securing grant funds, and administering grant funds and related contracts or services.

·         Experience in working with planning initiatives at the local and/or regional level.

·         Experience in working with civic organizations ranging from neighborhood groups, to city councils/commissions and regional councils.

·         Knowledge of urban planning and design discourse, research trends, and professional publications.

·         Proficiency in standard and specialized software applications for the planning profession.

·         Working knowledge of all or a combination of the following GIS software applications: ArcView, ArcInfo, and/or ArcGIS


Desirable Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:


·         Experience working in an urban environment (where in-fill, redevelopment and urban form are issues) is preferred.

·         Proficiency in ArcInfo and ArcGIS is highly desirable.

·         Proficiency in design software (CAD, Adobe Creative Suite, Sketch-Up, Rhino, etc.) is highly desirable.

·         Working knowledge of, and/or proficiency in, modeling software.

·         Working knowledge and/or proficiency in web publication software.

·         Fluency in Spanish, Somali, and/or Hmong is highly desirable.

·         Certification by the American Institute of Certified Planners is highly desirable.

·         Certification in LEED professional credentials.

·         Meeting the Secretary of the Interior Professional Qualifications in History.


Supplemental Questions:


There are supplemental questions that must be answered and submitted with your application to complete the process. 

Supplemental Materials for Submission:


In addition to submitting your responses to the Supplemental Questions, please submit the following: 

·         Cover letter

·         Resume

·         Work products: 3-5 representative examples of your work: Plans or planning documents, guidelines, staff reports, written documents, design documents, drawings, sketches, photographs, presentations, website, web publication, etc. – whatever you think will convey your abilities and talents to us. For each submission, please attach a short statement that lets us know whether it was a solo or group effort and the role you played in creating that piece of work or components within each piece of work.



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