Partner Association Sessions

Every year the APATX conference brings together the hottest topics, the latest tools, and the leading voices with something new to say. As planners, we can't do this alone - so we are excited to bring to you as part of #APATX19 a Partner's Track with sessions from partner organizations to better connect us with our allied professions. Specific times and dates of these sessions will be announced with the full conference program. All Partner Association Sessions will be eligible for 1.5CM. 

The AARP Livability Index - A Tool for Better Communities

Thursday, November 7 | 10:15am| Texas South 116



  • Tina Tran, J.D., AARP Texas, Director of Outreach and Advocacy

  • Isabel Longoria, MPAff, AARP Texas, Associate State Director of Outreach and Advocacy

The Livability Index website provides resources to help consumers and policymakers use livability scores to effect change in their communities. It is the first tool of its kind to measure livability broadly at the neighborhood level for the entire country, and it is intended to inform and encourage people to take action to make their communities more livable. In this session we will demonstrate how to use the Livability Index site as a neighborhood assessment tool, spur ideas to improve livability scores, and advocate for policy changes.

Walk Audit Toolkit Demonstration
Friday, November 8 | 10:15am| Texas North 115



  • Tina Tran, J.D., AARP Texas, Director of Outreach and Advocacy

  • Isabel Longoria, MPAff, AARP Texas, Associate State Director of Outreach and Advocacy

This session will be a demonstration of the AARP Walk Audit Toolkit. A walk audit is a great way to engage and organize the residents of a neighborhood around walkability. A walk audit it a tool that requires residents and advocates to walk in their community and assess the quality of the sidewalks and streets. The assessment can then be shared with planners, elected officials, and other local leaders to advocate for sidewalk improvements, safer streets, and other community features. We would like to take a group and conduct an actual walk audit in an appropriate location near the conference and then produce a sample report for the participants.

Uniting Ecology and Community through Sustainable Reclamation
Thursday, November 7 | 3:45pm| Texas North 113

American Society of Landscape Architects - Texas


  • Rebecca Leonard, FAICP, PLA, LEED AP, CEO of Lionheart Places LLC

  • Kevin Ramberg, aci Chief Operating Officer

  • Steven Spears. FASLA, PLA, AICP, Principal at GroundWork Development Company

Austin, Texas is one of the fastest growing metropolitan areas in the United States. The metropolitan area, primarily consisting of Travis, Hays and Williamson County were listed as three of the top twenty fastest growing counties in the nation. As a result, transportation and growth challenges have surfaced creating a profound impact to the region. Ranching and agriculture land is being consumed for development. Housing prices have increased significantly due to supply and demand. As an alternative, Austin Green, a 2,122-acre sand and gravel quarry located only eight miles east of downtown Austin and along three miles of the Colorado River, is envisioned to be reclaimed to integrate ecology and community, through expansive open space networks intertwined with a new town center. The panelist, made up of a developer, landscape architect and planner, and an ecologist discuss the unique process, surprises, lessons learned and outcomes of this profound reclamation effort that will create an intense mixed-use town center that integrates community and ecology at its core.

Congress for New Urbanism

CNU Building Timeless Places
Thursday, November 7 | 2:00pm| Texas South 117


  • Matt Lewis, CNU-A, CEO, Simplecity Design

  • Amanda Popken, CEO AP Development

  • Leah Bojo, Senior Land Use & Policy Manager, Drenner Group
    President, CNU - CTX

CNU Building Timeless Places Partner Session will focus on the work the Congress for New Urbanism is doing at a local, state, and national level to advance building places that foster community, allow for diversity in population and housing stock and promote interaction between neighbors. The New Urbanism is a design movement toward complete, compact, connected communities—but it is also a generator of ideas that transform the landscape. Communities are shaped by the movement and flow of ideas, and the New Urbanism has been a rich—maybe the richest—source of innovative thoughts that have directed planning and development in recent decades.

Elevating Planning with IAP2: Core Principles and Values
Thursday, November 7 | 2:00pm| Texas North 114

International Association for Public Participation


  • Tina Geiselbrecht, Research Scientist and Program Manager at Texas A&M Transportation Institute (TTI)

  • Doise Miers, Community Outreach Manager, Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization

  • Shuronda Robinson, President/CEO, Adisa Communications 

  • Cara Welch, Community Engagement Consultant at City of Austin

  • Celso Baez, ssistant Director of Community Engagement & External Communications at Austin ISD

The International Association for Public Participation (IAP2) has partnered with the American Planning Association to instill core values and a code of ethics that underlie good public participation in the practice of planning. In this session, we will demonstrate how the foundations of IAP2 are used to develop public engagement plans that lead to better outcomes in planning. We will provide insights to help participants think more deliberately about public engagement, both at the project and organizational level. Since many participants will have their own experience with public engagement and public meetings, we will invite conversation from the audience throughout.

Live Well Waco: A Collaborative Approach for a Healthy City
Thursday, November 7 | 3:45pm| Texas South 116

Texas Public Health Association


  • Dr. Melissa Oden, Assistant Professor and Director of Field Education, MSW Program; Tarleton State University

  • Janet Jones, MPH, CHES, Lead Public Health Education Specialist, Waco-McLennan County Public Health District

  • Ashley E. Williams, MSEd, Public Health Education Specialist, Waco-McLennan County Public Health District

  • Tom Balk, LA, Senior Park Planner, City of Waco

  • Clint Peters, AICP, Director of Planning

Learn how the City of Waco leverages partnerships across sectors to plan and develop healthy living opportunities for the community and its visitors. Incorporating a public health lens can offer a non-traditional framework to the planning perspective, and positively impact health outcomes. Presenters will discuss the process that integrates stakeholder engagement, and health equity to influence innovative solutions that provide low cost fitness opportunities within the built environment. These collaborations strive to promote an active and safe community in Waco, TX.

Low Cost High Impact Historic Resource Surveys
Thursday, November 7 | 10:15am| Ranger 108-110


  • Emily Koller, AICP, Planning Manager, City of Amarillo. 

  • Lorelei Willett, Certified Local Government Program Coordinator, Texas Historical Commission

  • Craig Garrison, Planning Technician, City of Corpus Christi

  • Karie Denny, Main Street Director and Historic Preservation Officer, City of Corsicana

Texas Historical Commission

Does your city lack critical information about historic buildings? Are you having trouble working with developers interested in historic tax credits? Is it difficult to convince city leadership to find funding for historic resource survey projects? You are not alone! This session will introduce participants to survey features for, a software platform that helps cities manage and market historic buildings. The cities of Corsicana and Corpus Christi completed a pilot project in 2019 through the Texas Historical Commission’s Certified Local Government program resulting in tools that allow cities to organize complex data in a user-friendly and publicly available format, and the ability to expedite and complete at a lower cost formal historic resources surveys. Participants will hear from the cities, view the new survey tools and and learn how to access them.

Assessing Transportation Using Big Data Analytics and Visuals
Friday, November 8 | 10:15am| Lone Star 104

Texas A&M 
Transportation Institute


  • Michael Martin, Assistant Research Scientist, Texas A&M Transportation Institute

  • David Schrank, Ph.D., Senior Research Scientist, Texas A&M Transportation Institute

  • Phil Lasley, AICP, PMP, Assistant Research Scientist, Texas A&M Transportation Institute\

  • Moderator: Ed Hard, Research Scientist, Texas A&M Transportation Institute

This session includes presentations on three on-going TTI research initiatives sponsored by TxDOT. The first presentation will show how origin-destination (O-D) information developed from crowd-sourced mobile device and in-vehicle navigation data is used to provide ‘observed’ travel patterns in Texas communities. The second presentation will introduce the Congestion Management Process Assessment Tool (COMPAT), a new web-based tool created for Texas MPO’s that provides local agencies the ability to monitor traffic congestion levels.  The final presentation will discuss the Texas Bicycle and Pedestrian Count Exchange, a new statewide database of pedestrian and bike count data developed TTI and TxDOT that encourages direct contribution from local and regional agencies.

Tools for Successful Streetscape Planning and Projects
Friday, November 8 | 2:00pm| Texas North 113

Scenic Texas

Scenic Houston


  • Bill Odle, President, TBG

  • Anne Culver, Executive Vice President, Scenic Texas

  • Marlene Gafrick, Director of Planning, MetroNational

  • Amar Mohite, Director of Planning and Infrastructure, Harris County Precinct One

  • Patricia Frayre, PE, Founding Principal, Frayre Engineering & Consulting

Texas municipalities have long recognized that the character of a community is most often defined by its functional, well-designed, vibrant streetscapes and public spaces. The Streetscape Resource Guide supports optimal planning design and construction, illustrates top-flight design standards for successful projects and depicts the unintended consequences that can result from lack of cohesive planning. The recognized planning experts who wrote the Streetscape Resource Guide will describe its usefulness in moving the best possible streetscapes from concept to reality.

Getting Granular – A Close Look at the Reality of the Value Creation Premium Associated with TOD and Walkable Urban Development
Friday, November 8 | 10:15am| Texas South 117

Urban Land Institute


  • David Leininger, Strategic Advisor – Sasaki Associates and Co-Chair, North Texas Urban Land Institute Transit-Oriented Development Product Council

  • Travis Liska, AICP, Senor Transportation Planner at North Central Texas Council of Governments

  • Shea Byers, Director of Real Estate at J Street Companies

  • Rebecca Tudor, Principal, Twinrose Investments

This session will present the finding of several recent studies on property value, rent premiums and parking requirements associated with development located in close proximity to passenger rail stations and in neighborhoods with high walk scores. The studies were conducted by the North Texas Urban Land Institute and the ULI Transit Oriented Development Product Council. The findings provide definitive answers to the questions surrounding value capture: does it occur, what is the premium and what are the techniques available to capture some of the premium for the benefit of the public sector? The data confirmed there was a material difference in property value, namely higher, associated with transit oriented or walkable neighborhood development. A companion parking study also demonstrated the parking space requirements were well below parking standards specified by zoning or, in some instance, by lender requirements. 

Conference Location: 

El Paso Convention Center

APA-Texas Website: