Environmental planning has been a cornerstone of our professional practice since our establishment in 2004. Through sound planning, we facilitate decision-making processes to better manage the relationships that exist within and between natural and human systems. Our ability to work with our clients to involve and inform diverse stakeholder groups has led to many successful collaborations and partnerships necessary to resolve cross-jurisdictional environmental issues.
Regional Comprehensive Plan (Central Carbon County, PA)
Stell completed a regional comprehensive plan for five municipalities in Carbon County, Pennsylvania. The plan also included the preparation of a regional transportation plan and a regional park, recreation, greenway, and open space plan. A challenge emerged as to how to develop an action plan without overwhelming the local communities’ ability to successfully implement the plan. Implementation strategies and action items were developed that include only one short-term and one long-term goal for each of the five focus areas. The timing of these action items was structured so that at least one action item could be targeted for each year of the 10-year lifespan of the plan. Reflecting the creative nature of the plan, it was awarded the Pennsylvania Governor’s Award for Local Government Excellence under the category of Innovative Planning and Sound Land Use Practices.
Back Mountain Council of Governments Joint Land Use Plan, PA (Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources)
Stell worked with the Back Mountain Area Council of Governments to protect natural resources, particularly Special Protection Waters and major drinking water supplies, which were the principle concern. As a part of the comprehensive planning process, Stell conducted interviews with each municipality and open public meetings. The comprehensive plan addresses the community profile, function and form of government, land use, housing, economic development, transportation, open space, greenways and ecotourism, recreation and cultural resources, community services, and water and wastewater.
Flight 93 National Memorial Transportation Corridor Planning Study (Somerset County, PA)
Stell was part of the team completing the Flight 93 National Memorial Transportation Corridor Planning Study. The project team worked with communities to preserve and enhance the transportation corridor and gateway areas associated with important historic sites, heritage areas, National Parks and Monuments, scenic byways, scenic rivers, cities, small towns, and rural areas. The project included conducting a transportation and land use study of the 18-mile corridor leading to the United Airlines Flight 93 crash site in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, to explore and develop methods to decrease undesirable changes in the landscape due to the increase in visitors to the site, and to lessen the impact of the more than 100,000 additional automobiles traveling the corridor to reach the memorial.