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Planning Day: Class 34 – Attitude of Gratitude

December 13, 2021 5:06 PM | Anonymous

On Friday, December 3rd LNV Class 34 put on their hard hats and learned from local leaders about planning and development. We kicked off the day at the historic Hatt building with a belated birthday celebration for Jill Techel.  Jeri Hansen followed the birthday celebration providing us a detailed 360 view of the public and private effort to complete a new planning and development project. After the overview, the class was divided into planning day groups to get a crash course in local issues with a round table discussion with local leaders.

Stephanie Gaul, Assistant Housing Manger with the City of Napa, started the round table to discuss reviewing the many housing challenges the community faces due to the high cost of living within the Napa Valley. She focused on the need for planning to consider where their workforce is housed as well as the true cost of commuting in each day. Diana Meehan, Senior Program Planner with the Napa Valley Transportation Authority, discussed how transportation in the community evolves when we change where people work and live. She encouraged the group to think about the bigger picture of infrastructure need when we consider new development. Neal Harrison, Development Project Coordinator with the City of Napa, also participated in the round table discussion and encouraged LNV Class 34 to anticipate the needs of the community a decade into the future.

We finished the morning with a very informative presentation from Andrew Mazotti, Director of Zapolski Real Estate LLC. Andrew taught us how to think like a real estate developer and how Cap Rate is only part of the real estate development process. He humored the group when he went over the challenges that can occur when a development seeks out public comment and provided color with the benefits a new development can bring to a community.

After a delicious lunch from Sweetie Pies, we went on a field trip.  We were given a checklist to help us assess the proposed development site and we were asked to consider all planning elements. It was interesting to see our groups look at different site features and explore options for various buildings and open spaces.

Each team was given an hour to develop a proposal and it was great to see the different approaches taken.  The LNV “Planning Commission” members were very courteous and thoughtful.  It seemed that they took our proposals very seriously and provided real life feedback even if it was in the form of constructive criticism. I also appreciated the fact that Andrew Mazotti, the developer, returned to hear our proposals and was cheered to learn that LNV Class 34 all believed our ideas were so good that we should consider some sort of compensation!

Class 34 - Planning Day Gratitude
Program Day 6: Friday, December 3, 2021

Pattie Friesen, Retired Dir of Public Affairs, Contra Costa Water District
Justin Gomez, Financial Advisor, Edward Jones

About this post:
The purpose of the Attitude of Gratitude program is (1) to thank those who provide the information and experiences that make each of the program days exceptional, and (2) to reflect on what has changed for the class members as a result of their participation in Leadership Napa Valley. For each of the class program days, a gratitude team is assigned to make sure all the individuals responsible for coordinating, facilitating, and presenting the day are thanked.

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