FLiP 2022 inspires future planners!

June 2022 –

Our Future Leaders in Planning (FLiP) summer student leadership development program returned after a two-year hiatus due to the pandemic. Designed as an opportunity to introduce high school students to urban planning as a potential career, FLiP 2022, a four-day intensive program, welcomed high school students from throughout Hillsborough County on May 31. A big hit with the students, mentors, and parents alike, FLiP offered a broad exposure to planning from both public and private sector perspectives across many planning-related fields. The students flourished while networking with professionals, collaborating in teams, and honing their presentation and public speaking skills.

Day 1 highlights | Walking tour of the University of South Florida’s Tampa Campus highlighting USF’s award-winning Master Plan with campus Civil Engineer Rick Piccininni and Shuang Hao, Landscape Architect, ISA Certified Arborist | Lunch buffet at On Top of the Palms in the Marshall Student Center |  A brief on technological innovation in net-zero water recycling with Dr. Daniel Yeh | Walk Wise Tampa Bay presentation with CUTR’s Brentin Mosher | Saga City interactive planning introduction with CUTR’s Tia Boyd | Air quality and sustainability with Dr. Amy Stuart |

Day 2 highlights |  LiveGrowThrive2045 Tampa comprehensive Plan Update and Vision Survey with Katrina Corcoran and Emily Watkins | Intro to transportation planning with TPO Assistant Executive Director Gena Torres | Amazing breakfast buffet at Fred’s Market in Plant City | Environmental walking tour of the McIntosh Preserve with Chris Foster, the City’s Environmental Land Management Supervisor |  Introduction to planning for rapidly growing Plant City with planners Josh Blackman and Frank Noguera and Director of Planning & Zoning, Julie Ham | Visit Plant City Railroad Viewing Platform & Tower and Robert W Willaford Railroad Museum with museum director Bennie Lubrano | A VIP tour of Tampa International Airport featuring a presentation from Jeff Siddle, Vice President of Planning & Development and Sustainability & Resiliency Program Director Eric Caplan; SkyConnect rail; a behind-the-scenes look at the baggage system with Eric Segrue, Systems Automation Manager; and walking tour of art installations and other passenger amenities with Janet Zambito, Guest Experience Representative |

Day 3 highlights | Channelside Redevelopment Area walking tour with Tampa’s Mike Callahan, Urban Development Project Coordinator | Port Tampa Bay presentation with Principal Counsel Charles Klug and Chris Cooley, Director of Environmental Affairs | Tour of Sparkman’s Wharf | Lunch at Greenwise Water Street Eats | Presentation on the Gas Works development with developer Darryl Shaw and Kettler’s Graham Tyrell as well as the history of the property from Tampa Bay History Center’s Rodney Kite-Powell | Centro Ybor and the Ybor Visitor Information Center with the Ybor CRA’s Economic Development Specialist, Brenda Thrower | A tour of the Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority (THEA) featuring a conversation with new Executive Director and CEO Greg Slater as well as Brian Ramirez (Planning & Communications), Bob Frey (Planning Director) and Anna Quinones on planning projects and careers; and a tour of the City of Tampa’s Traffic Management Center with Nick An and Judith Villagas | Planning for MacDill Airforce Base presentation with base planner and Planning Commissioner Tony Rodriguez |

Day 4 highlights a.k.a. Team projects day! | Morning activity on Reimagining the Marion Transit Parkway including a walking tour led by mentors from the Tampa Downtown Partnership, City of Tampa, HART, and area redevelopment interests | Lunch at Michelle Faedo’s Tampeño Cuisine | Plan Hillsborough presentation by Melissa Zornitta, FAICP, Executive Director of the Planning Commission | Afternoon planning activity developing some parcels that are part of the Gas Works property with planning mentors from Plan Hillsborough, ULI Tampa Bay, Sun Coast Section – APA Florida, and the USF MURP and Student Planning Organization | Gas Worx project presentations by each team | Closing comments from Planning Commission Chair Nigel Joseph, mentors, and other contributors | FLiP 2022 Certificate presentations | Student evaluations of FLiP 2022 |

Friends and family gathered to observe the incredible closing presentations from the team planning activity closing out FLiP 2022.View the FLiP 2022 pictures in our Facebook photo album.

A huge thanks to our partners and sponsors – Hillsborough County Public Schools, ULI Tampa Bay, Sun Coast Section – APA Florida, Wiatt Bowers, AICP, Fred Johnson – and all our program contributors! Thank you for giving us a lift, literally, to HART, MetroRapid, TECOline Streetcar system, USF Bull Runner, and the School District. This program would not exist without your generosity and support investing in tomorrow’s leaders!

Finally, a shout out to our amazing students! FLiP always reinforces that our future is in great hands…

We are looking forward to FLiP 2023!