FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: February 17, 2015
The City of Kansas City, Mo. Planning and Development Department continues efforts to implement changes following an independent review of services completed by Zucker and Associates in July 2014. The report, which provided 325 recommendations related to service delivery, has served as a catalyst for the adoption of the Department’s Service Analysis Project which aims to improve customer service and simplify the City’s development review and approval processes. In order to ensure that these improvements meet the needs and expectations of local customers, the Planning and Development Department has assembled a Customer Advisory Group comprised of eight volunteers representing a wide cross-section of the development community. The formation of the Customer Advisory Group supports the Department’s long-term commitment to improving customer service as part of its Service Analysis Project.
“We are committed to streamlining the development process to make it easier for small businesses to undertake development projects in Kansas City, Missouri,” said Councilman Scott Taylor. “The input from the Customer Advisory Group is an invaluable tool for the successful implementation of long-term improvements which serve the needs of our customers.”
The Customer Advisory Group is comprised of eight key stakeholders who have volunteered their expertise for the betterment of services within the Planning and Development Department. Three City representatives are also active participants in the group. Representatives of the group include:
• Tom Trabon, Trabon Development
• Kathy Hauser, development attorney
• David Matthews, Lutjen Inc.
• Sara Corless, Home Builders Association of Greater Kansas City
• Ryan Warman, Pearce Construction, architect/AIA
• Babette Macy, Kissick Construction
• Augie Huber, A L Huber Construction
• Sean O’Byrne, Downtown Council of Kansas City
• Councilman Scott Taylor, 6th District — Group Chairman
• Greg Franzen, City Planning and Development
• Jeffrey Williams, City Planning and Development
The Customer Advisory Group meets regularly, and has already aided in the successful implementation of a number of improvements including the reorganization of staff, and improved coordination with other City Departments.
“We greatly appreciate the work of the advisory group in providing input and guidance through this effort,” said Greg Franzen, Assistant Director of City Planning & Development. “The input received by the advisory group helps our staff understand our customers’ point of view as we implement changes to improve City Planning and Development processes.”
In addition to implementing the Service Analysis Project, the Department also emphasizes two services to improve customer’s experiences. The services include an optional Development Assistance Team meeting with Department staff, and electronic plan submittal.
Optional Development Assistance Team Meeting: Provides the opportunity for customers to discuss development ideas with a team of City staff, and gives constituents the opportunity to vet ideas before committing funding. The pre-planning meeting educates customers on the approval process and costs, and allows staff to advise customers with regard to potential challenges and pitfalls.
Electronic Plan Submittal: Currently available for three types of plans, this electronic service benefits customers by making plans easier to submit and by providing immediate availability to documents. The Service is a sustainable alternative to the paper services which were more time-consuming and more expensive.
Questions regarding the Service Analysis Project or the Customer Advisory Group may be directed to Greg Franzen, Assistant Director of City Planning, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 816-513-1538.