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A town planner is a person who advises people about the design of new buildings, sites and communities. They are responsible for ensuring that the development of these spaces is sustainable. They are often employed by local authorities, but can also work for property firms and consulting agencies.

Urban planning is a career path that requires a high degree of intelligence, logical thinking and creativity. They have to consider many aspects of the future of towns, cities and rural areas, and balance the need for space with environmental, social and economic demands.

Typically, urban planners have degrees in the fields of architecture or planning. These can be obtained at bachelor’s, masters and post-doctoral levels.

There are a number of colleges and universities in the United States that offer bachelor’s, master’s or doctorate degrees in town planning. The curriculum focuses on topics such as city planning, urban design and land use regulations.

The curriculum is designed to prepare graduates to perform the duties of a town planner, as well as prepare them for leadership positions within their organizations. They often also take part in professional development courses to further their knowledge and skill sets.

Some of these skills can be learned on the job, but others require formal training and certification. For example, the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) provides a program that allows individuals to complete a certification in town planning.

Employers usually prefer a graduate with a bachelor’s or master’s degree in urban planning. These individuals must also be registered with the state board of licensing and have a minimum of two years of professional experience under their belt.

Salaries for town planners vary widely, depending on their role, qualifications and experience. Some can earn salaries of more than PS55,000. Those with senior positions and higher qualifications are likely to receive salary increases.

Working in the public sector offers a variety of benefits including pension schemes and generous holiday entitlements. Private sector jobs tend to pay less but can be more flexible.

Becoming a Chartered Member of the RTPI is another way to increase your earning potential. The RTPI offers professional accreditation, an extensive library of publications and access to a network of peers.

The responsibilities of an urban planner vary widely between jurisdictions, but may include some or all of the following:

They are involved in developing and regulating plans for residential, commercial, industrial and other types of land use. They are able to assess proposals and make recommendations to decision makers, such as elected councils or boards of planning officers.

In addition, they are required to visit sites and consult with interested parties. This can include developers, architects, surveyors and other professionals.

Using a range of tools and technologies in their work, they collect data on the population, land use and environmental factors. They may also employ Geographic Information Systems (GIS) to analyze and manipulate the data.

These planners often have leadership skills, helping them to achieve their objectives. They can lead teams, discuss plans for the future of the area and initiate changes that will improve the quality of life in a community.