Overview

Are you an experienced environmental planner or landscape architect with an understanding of natural resource inventory plans, forest conservation plans, and landscape plans? If so, the Montgomery County Planning Department is where you want to be! We are currently seeking a motivated Planner II/Planner III for our Midcounty Planning Division. This is an opportunity to have a broad impact on the built environment, advocate for environmental sustainability, and shape future communities that cover the urbanizing communities of Montgomery County.

Montgomery Planning is part of The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission (M-NCPPC). For over 90 years, M-NCPPC has had a national reputation for excellence in planning, and today serves a culturally diverse population of over one million people on the border of Washington, D.C. in Montgomery County. We provide county-wide planning functions including long range planning, as well as reviews of development applications in diverse built environments of downtown urban districts, suburban communities, and agricultural areas. We have pioneered nationally modeled programs in agricultural preservation, inclusionary housing, and transit-oriented design. To learn more about who we are and what we do, we encourage you to watch this brief video here and visit our website at www.montgomeryplanning.org.  

We value the safety of our staff and our community. To that end, we have required all our employees to be vaccinated while following all COVID-19 protocols. Person(s) hired for this position must provide proof of being fully vaccinated for COVID-19 (with limited religious or medical exceptions.)

The Planner II position requires strong project management skills, effective oral and written communication expertise; ability to work with interagency partners on implementation focused planning initiatives; community engagement experience; capacity to read and interpret land use plans, and knowledge of natural resource inventory plans, forest conservation plans, and landscape plans. Candidates must have strong technical writing and plant identification skills. An understanding of development proposals in three dimensions and the ability to provide recommendations related to the design of streets, open spaces, environmental best practices, and forest conservation areas through comments, sketches, and precedents is required. 

The Planner III performs the following major duties in addition to the responsibilities listed above for the Planner II position:

  • Lead implementation focused planning initiatives and studies and manage a project team of colleagues and consultants.
  • Coordinate the review of complex development applications and negotiate with applicants for related improvements.
  • Speak on behalf of staff recommendations to community groups, the Planning Board and County Council in a public hearing setting.

This position requires the ability to work well with team members with a diverse set of backgrounds and expertise. Candidates should be capable of effectively communicating with county residents, developers, planners, architects, engineers, attorneys, and public officials. Fieldwork and occasional evening meetings are required. 

Examples of Important Duties 

  • Manage projects and produce deliverables for meeting the goals, schedules, and deadlines for implementation-focused planning initiatives and studies
  • Analyze development applications (such as sketch plans, preliminary plans and site plans), and rezoning applications
  • Prepare environmental guidelines for comprehensive land use and corridor plans, particularly those that relate to increasing housing diversity, multimodal transportation and Vision Zero
  • Participate in or lead community meetings
  • Engage stakeholders in placemaking activities that demonstrate the potential of master planning recommendations and enhance walkability and social interaction
  • Conduct special studies of complex planning problems
  • Interpret applicable Environmental Guidelines, and ensure compliance with the Zoning Code, Forest Conservation Law and Sector Plans. Develop design alternatives to resolve identified issues.
  • Assist in the creation of visually compelling presentations for the public and the Planning Board.
  • Provide written content and graphically illustrate issues for staff reports. 

The successful Planner II/III should have the ability to: 

  • Handle complex and often controversial situations.
  • Balance multiple deadlines and projects.
  • Effectively identify problems and be resourceful and creative in developing solutions, requesting the assistance or input of others as appropriate.
  • Demonstrate design ideas through visual and written materials. 

Minimum Qualifications

Planner II

  1. Bachelor’s Degree in Planning, Geography, Architecture, Parks and Recreation, Transportation, Urban Design, Engineering, Environmental Science, Public Policy, Economics or any related field.
  2. Two (2) years of progressively responsible professional level planning experience or specific area of assignment such as transportation planning, environmental planning or urban planning.
  3. An equivalent combination of education and experience may be substituted, which together total six (6) years.
  4. Valid driver’s license (depending on area of assignment) in accordance with both State and Commission rules and regulations.  Driver’s license must be unencumbered by restrictions, revocations, suspensions, or points that could limit the employee’s ability to drive Commission vehicles or perform driving duties required by the position of assignment.

Planner III

  1. Bachelor’s Degree in Planning, Geography, Architecture, Parks and Recreation, Transportation, Urban Design, Engineering, Environmental Science, Public Policy, Economics or any related field.
  2. Four (4) years of progressively responsible professional level planning experience related to specific area of assignment such as transportation planning, environmental planning or urban planning.
  3. An equivalent combination of education and experience may be substituted, which together total eight (8) years.
  4. Valid driver’s license (depending on area of assignment) in accordance with both State and Commission rules and regulations.  Driver’s license must be unencumbered by restrictions, revocations, suspensions, or points that could limit the employee’s ability to drive Commission vehicles or perform driving duties required by the position of assignment. 

Supplemental Information

Classification Specification-Planner II/ Planner III

About the Montgomery County Planning Department:
M-NCPPC offers excellent benefits and competitive salaries. We are conveniently located in downtown Wheaton, MD and easily accessible to Wheaton Metro Station and several bus lines. A commuter stipend is available. Learn about our new LEED Platinum-rated headquarters building here!

The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission (M-NCPPC) is an Equal Opportunity Employer. We celebrate a workplace culture of diversity, equity and inclusion without discrimination or harassment on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, age, national origin, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, genetic information, gender identity, or any other non-merit factor. 

About Montgomery County Planning Department

As Montgomery County, Maryland continues to attract an increasingly diverse, technologically savvy, well-educated population, the Montgomery County Planning Department (part of The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission) focuses its skills and talents to bring high-quality design in both form and function to all areas, from central business districts to rural villages. Montgomery County is home to over one million residents and borders the nation's capital, Washington, DC!

The Department aims to improve quality of life by conserving and enhancing the natural and built environment for current and future generations. The Planning Department creates great communities by developing master plans, reviewing applications for development and analyzing various types of information to help public officials plan for Montgomery County’s future. Each community within Montgomery County has a master plan that creates a comprehensive view of land use trends and future development. (Some jurisdictions within Montgomery County—such as the cities of Rockville and Gaithersburg and some smaller taxing districts such as Poolesville—have independent planning and zoning authority over land within their boundaries. Contact those jurisdictions directly for information about properties within their borders.)

The 150+ member Planning Department brings regulatory cases, master plans, functional plans and many other initiatives to the Montgomery County Planning Board.