Awards 2022

Awards of Excellence

The following projects have been awarded an Award of Excellence for the 2022 Central Coast American Planning Association (APA) Planning Awards Program. These projects are eligible to be nominated for the 2022 California Chapter State APA Planning Awards Program. The winners were notified early enough to complete their State APACA nomination packets by the deadline. Please see the award-winning projects below with a brief description and visual aid of the work. Reach out to Hollee King Winegar, MPA, AICP at with any questions related to the Central Coast APA Awards Program.

Public Outreach Award

Outreach in a Time of a Pandemic
City of Santa Barbara Community Development Department Planing Division

The City of Santa Barbara Long Range Division was awarded the Public Outreach award for their excellent use of technology to educate and engage with the community and promote public participation during the COVID-19 pandemic. The online tools and resources curated were used to promote multi-unit development and demonstrate the potential social and economic benefits to the city. The online tool proved to be successful in engaging with community members on a complex planning concept and will continue to be used for future planning efforts.

Comprehensive Plan Award-Small Jurisdiction

Port Hueneme General Plan Update and Environmental Impact Report
Tony Stewart, Director of Community Development, City of Port Hueneme

The City of Port Hueneme, with Rincon Consultants, Inc. prepared a comprehensive¬† General Plan Update far beyond worthy of the Comprehensive Plan Award for a small jurisdiction. The General Plan aimed to improve local jobs and housing opportunities, enhance community design, and improve social equity. The city ensured the community that their needs would be met while adhering to new state legislation. Two key additions to the General Plan were a Climate Action Plan (CAP) and the Social Equity element. These additions allowed the city to address issues such as environmental justice and public health through planning. This updated General Plan will lead the way in future decision-making while keeping the community’s well-being at the forefront over the next 20+ years.

Best Practices Award

Rancho Sierra Affordable, Permanent Supportive Housing Development, County of Ventura Resource Management Agency, Planning Division
RRM Design Group, Many Mansions, Area Housing Authority of the County of Ventura

The Rancho Sierra Affordable, Permanent Supportive Housing Development has been awarded for Best Practice by the APA Central Coast Section. The two-story, 50-unit development will serve the underserved, low-income senior population within the county. The development plan includes 4,000 square feet of indoor space for various programs, events, and services for the resident’s leisure. The plan has also taken transportation and agricultural screening into account, along with ample on-site amenities for the site’s livability. The proposed development emphasized compliance with California Tax Credit Allocation Committee, No Place Like Home, and SB 744 to better fund the project and accelerate the processing timeline. This project allows planners to better understand how to effectively utilize streamlining laws and obtain grant funds to ensure efficient project completion. Construction is intended to start Summer of 2022 and leasing is anticipated to begin fall of 2023.

Innovation in Green Community Planning Award

Santa Barbara County Climate Change Vulnerability Assessment
County of Santa Barbara, Department of Planning and Development Placework Atlas Planning Solution

The Innovation in Green Community Planning Award has been given to the County of Santa Barbara, Department of Planning and Development for creating the Santa Barbara County Climate Change Vulnerability Assessment (CCVA). This detailed assessment focuses on the climate change risks posed to the unincorporated county. The CCVA has a multi-sector, multi-hazard approach to account for sensitive populations, buildings, and infrastructure that face numerous environmental threats. The assessment analyzes the physical threats of climate change and the potential damage to our social and economic systems indirectly. The project team prioritized public participation by engaging with many local stakeholders, community members, and county staff. The CCVA findings are crucial in preparation for the upcoming climate adaptation policies including the Climate Action Plan, Multi-jurisdictional Hazard Mitigation Plan, and Adaptation Plan.

Hard Won Victory Award

Somis Ranch Farmworker Housing Community
Jensen Design & Survey, Inc., County Ventura, Resource Management Agency (RMA), Planning Division, ‘Somis Ranch Partners, AMCAL Housing, RRM Design Group

The APA Central Coast Section awarded the Hard-Won Victory Award to the Somis Ranch Farmworking Community Project. This newly approved 360-unit affordable housing development in Ventura County is expected to provide high-quality housing to farm workers and their families. The development has highly anticipated indoor and outdoor amenities promoting a more sustainable lifestyle. However, this award was granted due to the numerous permitting obstacles the team had to overcome. The issues at hand spanned from the legal sector of respecting the Housing Accountability Act to physical landscape challenges such as the inclusion of a wastewater treatment facility. However, the success in overcoming these obstacles has led this project to be the largest of its kind and accurately reflects the County’s goals of providing affordable housing.

Academic Award

Trials and Rural Character Vision Plan
Community Planning Studio, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo

The Community Planning Studio of California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo has won the Academic Award for its Trials and Rural Character Vision Plan. The County of Los Angeles paired the Planning Studio with the Town of Acton, California to utilize planning for the town’s goals and needs. The team prioritized informal trails to be adopted by Los Angeles County and enumerated policies ensuring the preservation of the area’s rural character. The collaboration demonstrated in this project is a crucial part of planning and something these students demonstrated to the best of their ability.