Plan New Hampshire, The Foundation for Shaping the Built Environment (PlanNH), is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization formed in 1989.
PlanNH’s Mission is to encourage good planning and design and development because, we believe, what we build, where we build and how we build has a significant impact on the fabric of a community.
Our New Hampshire-focused membership is comprised of architects, landscape architects, engineers, planners, building and real estate professionals, lawyers, financial and insurance firms and others with an interest in promoting and implementing environmentally, economically and socially sustainable communities. This diversity of membership brings a unique variety of views and perspectives to our approach to shapingNew Hampshire’s built environment.
Plan NH works with organizations throughout the state towards realizing a vision of an economically, environmentally and socially vibrant New Hampshire in which:
- Towns and neighborhoods balance necessary development with preserving their unique, traditional characteristics
- Mixed-use centers, including affordable residential spaces, are encouraged
- Natural resources, open areas, undeveloped land as well as agricultural assets are protected and honored
- Traditional and creative ways of getting about increase access to jobs, food, education, healthcare and other services, friends and family
- Clean energy for heat and power becomes standard
- Collaboration and cooperation between and among towns and regions enhance the vitality of life in theGraniteState.
Plan NH champions principles and ideas that balance building projects – and this would include anything built in the public realm, such as buildings, roads, bridges, memorials, public sculpture – with
- The needs of people – where they live, how they get about, what services are necessary, what they value.
- maintaining the “sense of place” of our towns, cities and villages that makes them unique
- protecting our air, water, flora and fauna
PlanNH fulfills its mission through promoting Smart Growth and other sustainability principles via
- The Community Design Charrette program – an exercise in which local citizens andPlanNHvolunteers come together to explore potential solutions to planning or design issues in individualNew Hampshiretowns.
- Informational programming for members and others interested in sustainable design and development in the communities in which they work and/or live.
- Recognition of outstanding examples of work that reflectsPlanNH’sMissionthrough a Merit Awards program
- Scholarship programs that support students fromNew Hampshirewho are studying in a field related to theMission
- The Vibrant Villages New Hampshire initiative. With the generous support of the NH Housing Finance Authority, Vibrant Villages currently focuses on four broad categories that, together, we believe are an important foundation for a sustainable community:
- Growing healthy towns while preserving our rural character
- Looking at how we get about
- Where we live
- Our historic resources – our past that has shaped who we are today
The initiative provides stories, ideas and tools – examples of what is happening right here in New Hampshire – to inform and inspire us to new ways of thinking about our futures here in theGraniteState.
PlanNH has a part in (no particular order)
- Granite State Future: The NH Regional Planning Commissions have received a $3.4 million Sustainable Communities Initiative Grant (from HUD/DES/USDOT) to support their efforts in developing regional plans that are in synch with each other but also reflect the characters of each Region. Plan NH is one of many, many partners in this project – we are on the Technical Advisory Committee for “Traditional Settlement Patterns” and we will also post examples of progress on our Vibrant Villages NH site.
- Healthy Eating Active Living (HEAL) NH project. Four towns in the Granite State were selected to receive financial and technical assistance in identifying and implementing projects that will lead to healthier eating and better activity for their citizens. Plan NH is a consultant in this project, working to help communities conduct asset mapping and also to develop leadership from among its citizenry.
- A Community Planning Grant program that will provide “competitive matching grants to municipalities for the development of regulations that will promote and enhance local environmental, economic and social sustainability.” The program is administered by the NH Housing Finance Authority. Plan NH was invited to participate on the Steering Committee, and to sit on the Communications Committee.
- Transportation Solutions NH (TSNH), a coalition of diverse organizations with a common interest in changing how we develop policy for and fund transportation in New Hampshire. Affordable access to jobs, food, healthcare and other services, as well as to friends and family is critical for a vibrant, healthy future for everyone. Plan NH is on the Steering Committtee.
- AIA (American Institute of Architects) NH’s Environmental Guild.
- The Advisory Board of the Livable Walkable Communities Toolkit revision, spearheaded by the Southern NH Planning Commission.
- The Transportation and Land Use roundtable.