Superstition Vistas, AZ Envision Tomorrow
Nonprofit, business, and community organizations at local and regional levels are taking a larger role in planning as they represent interests as diverse as environmental protection, community health, and social equity. These organizations often use scenarios to advocate for their interests and ensure that their values are represented in decisions that will guide local and regional growth. Many of them also use scenario planning tools to test alternatives and assert their positions within community planning processes. Some nonprofit organizations, such as the Sonoran Institute, work directly with local jurisdictions to build technical capacity to encourage the use of these tools.
Superstition Vistas, a 275-square-mile tract of undeveloped state trust land in Arizona, is one of the largest pieces of land under single ownership in any metropolitan area. Its sensitive location is in the path of the fast-developing Sun Corridor that encompasses the region between Phoenix and Tucson. Envision Tomorrow was used to create four largescale scenarios, ranging from a trend scenario to a compact, transit-oriented form. The scenarios are being used to help guide future decision making about sustainable development for the Superstition Vistas site.
Developed by Fregonese Associates, Envision Tomorrow is a Microsoft Excel and ArcGIS-based modeling and evaluation tool that analyses growth and development scenarios at a range of scales from neighborhood to regionasoutherl. It utilizes several components to develop and evaluate land use scenarios. Components of the tool have the capability to design buildings and site plans and test their physical and financial feasibility at a local level. It can be used to estimate the physical and financial feasibility of a proposed development or existing development regulations based on a range of factors including parking, height and use requirements, costs associated with construction, fees, rents, and subsidies. An Excel-based scenario spreadsheet is dynamically linked to the tool and maintains the scenario outputs such as housing mix in a series of tabs for quick comparison. Changes made to a scenario are automatically reported in the spreadsheet for instant monitoring. Users can focus on small areas for detailed design control or zoom to a larger scenario with the small area changes intact. Detailed scenario results are exportable and reportable at any geography. It does not include an internal travel model, but is frequently used in conjunction with an external travel model.
Additional information on this case study:
Opening Access to Scenario Planning Tools (Policy Focus Report)
Superstition Vistas website
Superstition Vistas, White Paper: Land Use Scenario Development. Fregonese Associates
Scenario Planning Tools for Sustainable Communities
Issue: Scenario Planning Processes
Community Type: Urban
Location: Superstition Vistas, AZ
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