Firm honored for Iberville land use plan

Staff reports
OUTSTANDING PLAN...Patrick Moore of the Moore Planning Group (MPG), Iberville Parish President J. Mitchell Ourso Jr. and Parish Councilman Edwin M. Reeves Jr. of Plaquemine celebrate a professional award for the Iberville Parish Lane Use Plan. The local plan, drafted by MPG. The Louisiana Chapter of the American Planning Association selected the document for its 2009 Outstanding Planning Award for a Land Use Plan.

The Louisiana Chapter of the American Planning Association has honored Moore Planning Group (MPG) with its 2009 Outstanding Planning Award for a Land Use Plan for the document it created for Iberville Parish.

The chapter presented the award at its annual meeting last month in Alexandria.

MPG brought comprehensive planning techniques, including GIS Suitability Analysis, Market Feasibility Analysis, Smart Growth Initiatives and Smart Code concepts to a rural parish unaccustomed to land use planning, the firm said in a press release.

The stakes were high: Iberville Parish is one of the only areas within the Baton Rouge metro area to have lost population in recent years, a condition resulting from a lack of new development in the area.

The firm’s challenge in creating a land use plan was to preserve the area’s character and culture and to respect the vision of residents, while ensuring a positive growth environment. At the conclusion of the planning process, the community enthusiastically supported the plan, and the Iberville Parish Council adopted it unanimously.

“This plan has been a rousing success having already resulted in economic development and [has] given us a pro-active stance towards our parish growth and development,” said Iberville Parish Land Use Commission Chair Barry Marionneaux.

“Working with Moore Planning Group has allowed us to develop an implementation strategy for the ongoing needs of the Parish,” Marionneaux said. “All municipalities and parishes should have a plan such as we have.  It lays the groundwork for many Smart Growth principles that are essential for cities and parishes to be progressive.”

MPG’s Director of Planning Nathan Gaspard said the new land use plan gives Iberville Parish the ability to chart a promising new course.

“The plan will stimulate positive development because it eliminates a major growth deterrent: unpredictable development patterns, which can compromise the quality of life in the community, and challenge the ability of the parish to provide critical services,,” Gaspard said. 

MPG worked within tight budget constraints to create a plan with targeted goals and carefully selected priorities. The plan’s features included: 3D animation showing the possible consequences of lack of planning; Development Suitability Mapping, which objectively merged the parish’s physical and cultural attributes and Smart Growth goals; a Housing and Commercial Development Feasibility Report, which helped the parish anticipate growth needs over 10 years; and more.

Moore Planning Group is a Louisiana-based full-service planning and landscape architecture firm with offices in Alexandria and Baton Rouge. Further information is available at or at (318) 445-2825.