On Demand Webinar

How Online Public Engagement Takes Off: Lessons from a Bikeway Study in NC

On-Demand Now Available!
Educational Credit: 1.0 (APA AICP CM)

How can you reliably engage 1000s of participants regardless of the size of the project?

Meaningful engagement matters at every level—federal, state, and municipal. While LRTPs and State-wide projects get plenty of attention and resources, smaller projects covering local corridors, bikeways, bridges, or parks are vital, and carry great significance to the members of the community.

In this webinar, our speakers will show us how to create success with even your smallest projects, building trust with the public, reaching hard-to-reach and underrepresented communities and building momentum that allows planners to reach 1000s online. With a spotlight on the recent success of the North Carolina Capital Area MPO (CAMPO)’s Triangle Bikeway Study and backed up by anecdotes from years of experience our panel will reveal the strategies that they’ve used to run dozens of successful engagement campaigns for projects big and small.

Kenneth Withrow from Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization in North Carolina and Erich Melville from McAdams will take us through the specific online engagement strategy and tools that allowed them to reach over 2000 residents for the bikeway study. They will set the stage for a Q&A panel where they’ll be joined by Jasmin Thompson and Sarah Parkins, both Community and Public Involvement Specialists from WSP. Together, our panelists will show us how careful planning, purposeful messaging, targeted promotions, and the right technology can be combined for great success, allowing planners to cost-effectively engage constituents and develop relationships with the community that support long-term, fruitful community engagement.

Whether it’s a local or state-wide project, fear of going unheard can stop the public from sharing their opinion. Join us as our dynamic panel shows us powerful community engagement tactics for any type of project, helping planning teams build a culture of engagement, target key groups, and reach 1000’s of participants!

In this webinar, we will explore:

  • Inspiring public trust and investment in planning projects
  • Simple strategies to engage diverse groups in your community
  • Using social media and online promotions to capture attention
  • Efficient software for collecting public input
  • Nationwide trends and tactics for effective community engagement
Average rating: 4.51/5

I enjoyed the format, and the ease that the presenters showed in engaging with one another. It really spoke volumes as to how flexible online public engagement can be, and how inclusive.

Great presenters. Each speaker's perspective was unique, but fit together nicely into something I think will be useful and actionable in my practice.

Great session with both general guidance and practical examples.


Jasmine Thompson

Community and Public Involvement Specialist, WSP

Jasmine Thompson joined the WSP Communications and Public Involvement practice in 2019. Since moving from her background in broadcast journalism, Jasmine has shifted her skills to help enhance the world of public engagement. Jasmine has work on long range transportation plans, roadway improvement projects, transit projects and housing projects all over the country, with a focus on the southeast region of the United States. She enjoys enhancing projects through video editing and survey development and analysis.



Sarah Parkins

Community and Public Involvement Specialist, WSP

Sarah Parkins joined WSP in 2018 after completing her Masters in City and Regional Planning. She is a member of the Communications and Public Involvement Group, using innovative online techniques to communicate with the public. She has worked on a range of projects across the Southeast and brings her experience in online surveying, strategic outreach and graphic design to every project. Sarah is a member of the TRB Committee on Public Engagement and Communications and has a profound love for corgis.



Kenneth Withrow

Senior Transportation Planner, NC CAMPO

Kenneth Withrow, AICP, serves as Senior Transportation Planner for the North Carolina Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (CAMPO). He is a member of the North Carolina chapter of the American Planning Association; the BikeWalkNC Board of Directors, the East Coast Greenway Advisory Board; as well as listed on the National SRTS Center’s online directory of trained SRTS National Course Instructors. Beyond his current professional work, his interests include music, biking, and civic activities.


Erich Melville

Bicycle and Pedestrian Planner, McAdams

Erich Melville is a community development and planning professional with 13 years of broad professional experience in public, private and non-profit sectors. He has four years of field work experience in Latin America (Peace Corps El Salvador and Colombia, and local non-profit in Mexico City) and two years of non-profit and educational work in the United States. More recently, his focus has shifted towards community and regional planning with a focus on initiatives that promote recreation, conservation, and social equity.

Thank you to our webinar sponsors!
Educational credit available through the APA.

American Planning Association.
CM APA Certification
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