With area poised for growth, search is on for new city planner

Joshua Baethge,
The Van Alstyne Leader
Van Alstyne city officials and others participate in an August 2019 groundbreaking ceremony on the first developmental phase of the Mantua project. With significant development headed to the area, the city is looking to hire a new director of city planning.

Van Alstyne has put out the call for a new director of city planning.

The position is currently vacant after the previous director, Amy Mathews, decided to move on.

Filling the position has become a top priority since the city is poised for growth and on the verge of a major population boom.

Currently, there are 3,000 homes within the city limits that are under development, with an additional 7,000 homes in the planning stages.

“It’s an important position and I’m anxious to fill it,” City Manager Lane Jones said.

The person chosen will be expected to work on projects related to long-range planning, zoning, urban design and basic city development. They will also review and process annexation, planning, zoning and subdivision applications.

Other responsibilities will include managing permitting, engineering building inspections, code inspection, compliance and animal control.

Additionally, the director will be expected to monitor legislation and technical developments that affect planning functions. He or she will also coordinate with city and state officials to review current and future development needs.

Jones and city staffers hope to find someone with at least five years of experience in municipal planning or other another related field.

Just as importantly, they want someone with strong management and leadership skills who is committed to maintaining Van Alstyne’s small-town feel while also applying careful planning skills during this time of rapid growth.

The city planner job requires someone who interacts well with city leadership and has the ability to express a concise vision to both developers and residents.