As the City of Virginia Beach looks to the future, high priority planning issues include developing resilient infrastructure systems and creating healthier, walkable neighborhoods with strong, vibrant centers – all aspects of a well-rounded sustainability strategy that accounts for the environment, economy, and the betterment of society. To define this vision and a path to achieve it, the city partnered with Clark Nexsen’s master planning experts to develop The Community Plan for a Sustainable Future.

The plan outlines the vision of Virginia Beach as a model sustainable community, establishing short, medium, and long-term strategies and metrics to assist city agencies in creating a better for future for the city and its citizens.

Developed with extensive public participation and stakeholder input, the Sustainability Plan process included more than 20 public meetings as well as additional follow ups, updating the community on progress. Our team conducted multiple workshops with the Steering Committee and nine focus groups, each comprised of subject matter experts in fields such as economics, environmental sciences and sociology. At the completion of each milestone in developing the plan, our planning and urban design team participated in a briefing with the City Council. As with any substantial public master plan, it was of utmost importance to build consensus and ensure all participants that their input was heard and included to some degree or in an appropriate manner, making continuous outreach an essential component of the communications plan.

The resulting Community Plan for a Sustainable Future reflects the values and priorities of the Virginia Beach community and includes strategies for effective coordination between city agencies, public education, the development of sustainable infrastructure, and the creation of healthier neighborhoods with nearby social centers.