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  • Writer's pictureDrew Williams

The Berkley Group Perspective on APA Virginia's 2019 "Resilience" Conference

The Virginia Chapter of the American Planning Association held its 49th annual conference July 21-24 in Hampton, Virginia. The theme was “resilience” – values, places, holistic. More than 350 people attended over the three-day period, and it was an opportunity to reconnect with longtime friends and professionals and meet some new faces as well!

Denise Nelson, Environmental Engineer, joined about 25 other brave souls in the 100-degree heat on Monday for the Newmarket Creek canoe trip. Led by the James River Association and narrated by David Imburgia (City of Hampton), they explored the natural and constructed living shorelines from the water to see firsthand part of the City’s resilience strategy at work. Rumor has it a video of the trip will be available soon.

The Berkley Group and Mecklenburg County received the 2019 Old Dominion Innovative Approaches Award for Solar Farm Planning & Zoning. Drew Williams, COO; Todd Gordon, Director of Planning; and Denise Nelson accepted the award at the Awards Luncheon. Denise Nelson shared details of the project in a seven-minute “quick take” presentation in the Award Session.

Denise Nelson co-presented with Scott Smith, City of Norfolk Coastal Resiliency Manager, on the “Resilient Norfolk: Ohio Creek Watershed Envision® Case Study” on Tuesday. The presentation described the planning and design of the coastal resilience improvements in the Ohio Creek Watershed Project and the use of the Envision rating system to evaluate and document best practices.

There were plenty of great educational sessions and networking events to keep us busy. Did you see us at the reception at Vanguard Brewpub & Distillery, the VCU Alumni Happy Hour at Bull Island Brewing Company (great pizza!), or the Fantasy Football Draft?

Thanks to APA Virginia, the City of Hampton, and our friends at Eldon James Associates for a wonderful time learning and networking! We’re looking forward to the 2020 conference in Richmond.

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