The Berkley Group has advanced as a company utilizing its professional partners in collaborative ways first trying to partner rather than compete. The time-consuming Request for Proposal process for individual projects led to our creation of the Auxiliary Town Hall program which is geared toward partnering with localities in more work efficient and cost effective ways.
The Berkley Group has partnered with Milton Herd on several projects including zoning work for the City of Manassas and Highland County. Milt’s insights have always proved valuable and he and Darren Coffey have similar work styles and thought processes. Milt’s positive references have also led to other projects and project opportunities such as with the towns of Mt. Jackson and Middleburg. He is a valued colleague and friend.
The Berkley Group has actively supported Virginia’s Planning Districts since our inception, sponsoring VAPDC for years and partnering with George Washington Regional Commission, Central Shenandoah PDC, Southside PDC, and the Middle Peninsula PDC. We continue to actively pursue partnerships with the planning districts because we believe that we are stronger together.
The Berkley Group partnered with Sympoetica to complete the Vinton Park Master Site Plan project. Barry Carpenter performed the graphic design for the project which was well received by the community. Mr. Carpenter has since moved to Ashville, NC and is in semi-retirement.
The Berkley Group has always enjoyed a friendly relationship with LPDA staff and several attempts to collaborate on projects have not come to fruition. We are currently teaming on the Town of Middleburg's Comprehensive Plan project. They will primarily be providing illustrative support for the project.
Our relationship with Sharon Pandak began prior to the firm’s inception through Dr. Chandler’s Planning Commissioner trainings. We have used Sharon for her professional opinions and legal services. We have attempted to collaborate on numerous projects via the RFP process.
We also enjoy friendly relationships with numerous other law firms including McGuire Woods, Sands Anderson, Hefty Wiley & Gore, Vanderpoole Frostick & Nishanian, Walsh Colucci, and VACo’s general counsel.
The Berkley Group has partnered with DAA on several stormwater projects for the Town of Dumfries. We have enjoyed a collaborative relationship with the firm for a number of years, particularly regarding business development and partnering opportunities.
We also enjoy a close relationship with EPR’s Bill Wuensch and Vlad Gavrilovic. We have attempted to team on numerous projects. EPR’s expertise is in transportation planning and engineering and other civil engineering projects.
The Berkley Group has partnered with McCormick Taylor on numerous transportation-related projects. They are currently our subconsultant for two transportation engineering projects in the Town of Dumfries. We also assisted them with the Staunton-Augusta-Waynesboro MPO’s (SAWMPO) first Long Range Transportation Plan (LRTP).
The Berkley Group partnered with TischlerBise to complete a General Plan Update for Payson, AZ. This collaboration added to Darren Coffey’s professional experience outside of Virginia which also includes extensive park planning experience in North Carolina. Other partnerships have been attempted via the RFP process, and our relationship with Carson Bise and his staff remains strong.
The Berkley Group has also made associations with other economic development and fiscal analysis firms. We are on good terms with both Dr. Ellen Harpel of BDA and Dr. Fletcher Mangum of Mangum Economics. The Berkley Group’s one attempt to partner with BDA on a Bath County project was not successful. Both firms are open to future partnership opportunities and have different strengths and points of emphasis.
Education & Outreach
The Berkley Group is committed to excellence in local government and toward that end we have partnered with George Mason University’s Certified Public Manager (CPM) Program to assist in teaching elements of that curriculum to local government professionals and other interested parties. Similarly, we have participated as instructors for Virginia Tech’s, and now the Land Use Education Program (LUEP), planner certification classes. Additionally, The Berkley Group has developed and conducted several planning and zoning workshops in partnership with Sharon Pandak, Esquire, for Board of Zoning Appeals and Planning Commissions.
The Berkley Group has also partnered with VCU's Center for Urban and Regional Analysis (CURA), and we are currently working with them on the update of the Commonwealth Regional Council's Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS). CURA is the economic and policy research center of the L. Douglas
Wilder School of Government & Public Affairs at Virginia Commonwealth University. CURA serves state agencies, regional organizations, planning district commissions, workforce investment boards, local governments, businesses and non-profit organizations, providing policymakers and stakeholders with the needed data and analysis to adopt informed decisions.
In addition to partnering with Virginia’s Planning Districts and sponsoring VAPDC, the Berkley Group also sponsors and partners with numerous other organizations including the Virginia Municipal League, Virginia Association of Counties, Virginia League of Government Managers Association, the Virginia Chapter of the American Planning Association and the Rural Planning Caucus of Virginia.