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Peachtree City, GA was one of the ten communities to be awarded a Livable Centers Initiative (LCI) grant from the Atlanta Regional Commission (ARC) in 2019. The grant incentivizes local jurisdictions to re-envision their communities as vibrant, walkable places that offer increased mobility options, encourage healthy lifestyles and provide improved access to jobs and services.

Funded with federal transportation dollars, the grant helps pay for planning studies and the construction of transportation projects, such as sidewalks and intersection improvements, to bring those visions to life. Peachtree City is in the midst of a year-long process that includes extensive community outreach as part of their LCI Planning Project.

Problem

The City originally planned for a series of in-person workshops and held an in-person kick-off meeting prior to the COVID pandemic. After restrictions on in-person meetings were put in place, the City needed a way to get stakeholder feedback and keep the plan moving forward.

Solution

TSW, the planning firm hired by the City to complete the LCI Planning Project, used a Konveio Site to seamlessly translate their planned in-person events to online community engagement. Noting that in-person meeting attendees typically have budgeted an hour or two of their time to participate, while visitors to a digital engagement site most likely have not mentally made a similar time commitment, the project team worked with Konveio staff and devised ways to collect informed feedback in a condensed time frame.

They uploaded maps, concept plans, presentations, photos, and videos for participants to view, comment, and vote on. The Konveio site included a short video explaining how to use the website. Instead of leaving website visitors to guess how long a particular activity will take, visitors were also presented with a list of five activities and the estimated time it would take to complete each one. This enabled participants to choose their level of engagement by how much time they had.

Impact

Over the course of three months, the Konveio Site received 3,000 visitors from the community who used the site to learn about the process and alternatives. Of those visitors, 200 active participants left 1,200 comments total between all activities that helped guide the project team on which development scenarios to pursue. About 33% of all visitors spent more than 10 minutes learning about the options and around 8% spent more than 30 minutes. This highlights how Konveio‚Äôs ‚ÄúChoose Your Own Adventure‚ÄĚ style of engagement served both an audience who only had a short amount of time to participate and another audience who wanted to dive deeper. The project team will consolidate the feedback received then share revised plans with stakeholders over the next few months.

‚ÄúI liked that people could comment directly within the PDFs of plans rather than having to go to a separate comment section. This feature, along with the ability for visitors to vote on the ideas they liked the best, made comment consolidation simple and painless.‚ÄĚ

‚ÄĒ Sarah McColley, AICP, Associate at TSW

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