Does planning work? Testing the implementation of local environmental planning in Florida Academic Article uri icon


  • The lack of empirical studies measuring the efficacy of plans and degree of local plan implementation subsequent to adoption represents one of the greatest gaps in planning research. This article addresses the need to test the effectiveness of environmental planning and plan implementation by examining the spatial pattern of wetland development permits over a io-year period in Florida. Specifically, our study compares the original land use design of comprehensive plans with subsequent development activity. We identify significant clusters of permits granted for wetland development and evaluate those locations against the adopted future land use maps for all county and city jurisdictions across the state. Findings indicate that development patterns that significantly deviate from the original intent of the adopted plans tend to occur in specific locations and under certain conditions. In addition, plans containing specific environmental and plan implementation policies are correlated with a greater degree of plan implementation. Based on the results, we discuss policy implications for improving plan performance at the local level and establishing a stronger link between plan content and plan implementation. 2005 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.

published proceedings


altmetric score

  • 3

author list (cited authors)

  • Brody, S. D., & Highfield, W. E.

citation count

  • 144

complete list of authors

  • Brody, SD||Highfield, WE

publication date

  • June 2005