American City Quality Month – April

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April has been designated American City Quality Month by the National League of Cities, The U.S. Conference of Mayors, the American City Planning Directors’ Council and the American City Quality Foundation to annually focus national and local public attention on the status and future of America’s cities and to promote better city planning, decisions, design, development, management and action to improve our cities.
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Billions of tax dollars have been invested in our central cities. Yet for many, they remain abandoned by families, businesses, workers and tourists. What is needed is a new vision for our cities to restore their economic vitality, safety, and beauty; to make them better places to live, work and play. New vision to preserve and improve our investment. New approaches to land use, housing, transportation, education, safety, environmental protection, finance, planning, development and management. New approaches to public/private sector partnerships, entrepreneurship, management and investment.

The annual, national, month-long program focuses on city planning, decisions, design, development, management and action to improve America’s cities.

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  • City Planning Directors, in conjunction with their Mayors and other locally elected officials and other public and private sector civic leaders, conduct a variety of events to raise public awareness including: holding public meetings to discuss city planning and development issues; sponsoring exhibits on new plans and programs for community revitalization; and discussing urban issues and opportunities with local students.
  • Corporations are urged to sponsor public national advertisements describing what they are doing to help improve the quality of America’s cities.
  • Local city planning and other civic organizations are urged to hold meetings and initiate projects to improve cities.
  • Universities offering graduate and/or undergraduate degrees in city planning or related programs are urged to develop educational programs to raise public awareness about cities and how they can be improved.
  • Other schools are urged to initiate teaching programs and activities to raise public awareness (e.g., build models, write essays, draw pictures, etc.).
  • Local and national media are encouraged to report and/or publish articles on the status and future of cities and how they can be improved.

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Participation and Roles

Aside from national objectives and themes, ACQM is a locally-driven and implemented program. Participation in ACQM is open to any city or community and any private business or civic organization. The City Planning Director is the central point of contact for ACQM activities. Persons or organizations interested in participating are encouraged to contact their City Planning Director. Also, to facilitate communication and coordination about activities, City Planning Directors are requested to notify ACQF about their activities.

In support of ACQM, ACQF will issue planning kits, media kits, corporate sponsor kits and information on planned activities.
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Promotional Resources

  • ACQM Poster 2016
  • ACQM Posters 2013-2015
  • Press Release Sample
  • Proclamation Sample: State
  • Proclamation Sample: City
  • Congressional Record Statement
  • ACQM Honorary and Co-Chairs

    2014 Honorary Co-Chair Scott Smith, President USCM, Mayor Mesa, AZ
              Honorary Co-Chair Chris Coleman, President NLC, Mayor St Paul, MN
              Chair John Wesley, City Planning Director Mesa, AZ
              Co-Chair Cecile Bedor, City Planning and Economic Development Director
    2013 Honorary Co-Chair Scott Smith, First Vice Pres USCM Mayor Mesa, AZ
              Honorary Co-Chair Marie Lopez-Rogers, President NLC Mayor Avondale, AZ
              Chair John Wesley, City Planning Director Mesa, AZ
    2012 Honorary Co-Chair Ron Sims, Prior Undersecretary US HUD Washington, DC
              Honorary Co-Chair Ted Ellis, President NLC Mayor Bluffton, IN
              Chair Michael W. Lautzenheiser, City Planner Bluffton, IN
    2011 Honorary Chair Elizabeth Kurtz President NLC Mayor Burnsville MN
              Chair Jenni Faulkner, Community Development Director Burnsville, MN
    2010 Honorary Co-Chair Ronald O. Loveridge President NLC Mayor Riverside CA
              Honorary Co-Chair Neal R. Peirce Washington DC
              Co-Chair Kenneth Gurierrez City Planning Director Riverside CA
              Co-Chair Kairos Shen City Planning Director Boston MA
    2009 Honorary Co-Chair Kathleen Novak President NLC Mayor Northglenn CO
              Honorary Co-Chair Manuel A. Diaz President USCM Mayor Miami FL
              Chair James Hayes City Planning Director Northglenn CO
    2008 Honorary Co-Chair Cynthia McCollum President NLC Mayor Madison AL
              Chair Robert A. Atallo City Planning & Building Director Madison AL
    2007 Honorary Chair Bart Peterson, President NLC Mayor Indianapolis, IN
              Chair Maury Plembeck, Metro Planning & Development Director
    2006 Honorary Chair James Hunt, President NLC Mayor Clarksburg, WV
              Chair Martin Howe, City Manager/Planner Clarksburg, WV

    Contact Us

    To learn more about American City Quality Month for the upcoming year, please contact us via our Request Information Form or call the ACQF office at
    207-712-6333.