Town planner Spatial planner, planner, urban designer, planning officer
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Town planners help shape the way towns and cities develop, and balance the demands on land with the needs of the community.
1. Entry requirements
You'll need a degree or a postgraduate qualification accredited by the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) in a relevant subject, like:
- town planning
- environment and development
- urban design
- sustainability, planning and environmental policy
You could study part-time for a qualification while working in a role like planning technician or support staff member.
2. Skills required
- excellent negotiation and presentation skills
- good organisational and time management skills
- excellent research and report writing skills
- IT skills
3. What you'll do
You'll use surveying techniques, geographical information systems (GIS) and computer-aided design (CAD) to draw up plans and make recommendations for land use.
You could work in a wide variety of areas, like transport, urban design or conservation.
Your day-to-day tasks could include:
- assessing the effect of new rail links or roads
- planning for houses and renewable energy generation sites like wind farms
- redesigning urban spaces and developing parks, woodlands and waterways in a sustainable way
- conserving old buildings and archaeological sites
- developing local or national planning policies for government
- making decisions about planning applications
- advising the public, businesses and land developers on planning policies, rules and regulations
- making sure planning rules and regulations are carried out
- organising meetings to hear feedback from local people
Highly Experienced: £55,000 to £80,000
These figures are a guide.
5. Working hours, patterns and environment
You'll work 35 to 40 hours a week. You may also attend events like public meetings in the evenings.
You'll work in a planning office. You'll need to travel to meetings and site visits.
6. Career path and progression
With experience, you could apply for chartered town planner status, and then become a planner or senior planner. With at least 10 years' experience you could become a senior manager or planning consultant. You could work as a self-employed consultant.
You could also move into environmental management, urban regeneration, recreation management and property development.
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Last updated: 13 September 2018