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Become A Facilities Planner

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Working As A Facilities Planner

  • Developing Objectives and Strategies
  • Communicating with Persons Outside Organization
  • Getting Information
  • Performing for or Working Directly with the Public
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Deal with People

  • Mostly Sitting

  • $82,000

    Average Salary

What Does A Facilities Planner Do

Urban and regional planners develop land use plans and programs that help create communities, accommodate population growth, and revitalize physical facilities in towns, cities, counties, and metropolitan areas.


Urban and regional planners typically do the following:

  • Meet with public officials, developers, and the public regarding development plans and land use
  • Administer government plans or policies affecting land use, the environment, zoning, historic buildings, public utilities, community facilities, housing, community design, and transportation
  • Gather and analyze market research data, censuses, and economic and environmental studies
  • Conduct field investigations to analyze factors affecting community development and decline, including land use
  • Review site plans submitted by developers
  • Assess the feasibility of proposals and identify needed changes
  • Recommend whether proposals should be approved or denied
  • Present projects to communities, planning officials, and planning commissions
  • Stay current on zoning or building codes, environmental regulations, and other legal issues

Urban and regional planners identify community needs and develop short- and long-term solutions to develop and revitalize communities and areas. For example, planners examine ideas for proposed facilities, such as schools, to ensure that these facilities will meet the needs of a changing population.

As an area grows or changes, planners help communities manage the related economic, social, and environmental issues, such as planning a new park, sheltering the homeless, and making the region more attractive to businesses.

Some planners work on broad, community-wide projects; others focus on specific issues. Ultimately, planners advocate the best use of a community’s land and resources for residential, commercial, industrial, educational, and recreational purposes.

When beginning a project, planners work with public officials, community members, and other groups to identify community issues and goals. Using research and data analysis, and collaborating with interest groups, they formulate strategies to address issues and to meet goals.

Planners also may help carry out community plans by overseeing projects and organizing the work of the groups involved. Projects may range from a policy recommendation for a specific initiative to a long-term, comprehensive area plan.

Urban and regional planners use a variety of tools and technology in their work, including geographic information systems (GIS) that analyze and manipulate data. GIS is used to integrate data with digital maps. For example, planners use GIS to overlay a land map with population density indicators. They also use statistical software, visualization and presentation programs, financial spreadsheets, and other database and software programs.

The following are examples of types of urban and regional planners:

Land use and code enforcement planners are concerned with the way land is used and whether development plans comply with codes, which are the standards and laws of a jurisdiction. These planners work to carry out effective planning and zoning policies and ordinances. For example, a planner may develop a policy to encourage development in an underutilized location and to discourage development in an environmentally sensitive area.

Transportation planners develop transportation plans and programs for an area. They identify transportation needs and issues, assess the impact of transportation services or systems, and anticipate and address future transportation patterns. For example, as growth outside the city creates more jobs, the need for public transportation to get workers to those jobs increases. Transportation planners develop and model possible solutions and explain the possibilities to planning boards and the public.

Environmental and natural resources planners attempt to mitigate the harmful effects of development on the environment. They may focus on conserving resources, preventing destruction of ecosystems, or cleaning polluted areas.

Economic development planners focus on the economic activities of an area. They may work to expand or diversify commercial activity, attract businesses, create jobs, or build housing.

Urban design planners strive to make building architecture, streets, and public spaces look and function in accordance with an area’s development and design goals. They combine planning with aspects of architecture and landscape architecture. Urban design planners focus on issues such as city layout, street design, and building and landscape patterns.

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How To Become A Facilities Planner

Urban and regional planners need a master’s degree from an accredited planning program to qualify for most positions.


Most urban and regional planners have a master’s degree from an accredited urban or regional planning program. In 2015, there were 72 programs accredited by the Planning Accreditation Board that offered a master’s degree in planning.

Many master’s programs accept students with a wide range of undergraduate backgrounds. However, many candidates who enter master’s degree programs have a bachelor’s degree in economics, geography, political science, or environmental design.

Most master’s programs include spending considerable time in seminars, workshops, and laboratory courses, in which students learn to analyze and solve planning problems. Although most master’s programs have a similar core curriculum, they often differ in the courses they offer and the issues on which they focus. For example, programs located in agricultural states may focus on rural planning, and programs located in an area with high population density may focus on urban revitalization.

Some planners have a background in a related field, such as public administration, architecture, or landscape architecture.

Aspiring planners with a bachelor’s degree can qualify for a small number of jobs as assistant or junior planners. There are currently 15 accredited bachelor’s degree programs in planning. Candidates with a bachelor’s degree typically need work experience in planning, public policy, or a related field.

Other Experience

Although not necessary for all positions, some entry-level positions require 1 to 2 years of work experience in a related field, such as architecture, public policy, or economic development. Many students gain experience through real-world planning projects or part-time internships while enrolled in a master’s planning program. Others enroll in full-time internships after completing their degree.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

As of 2015, New Jersey was the only state that required urban and regional planners to be licensed, although Michigan required registration to use the title “community planner.” More information can be requested from the regulatory boards of New Jersey and Michigan.

The American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP) offers the professional AICP Certification for planners. To become certified, candidates must meet certain education and experience requirements and pass an exam. Certification must be maintained every 2 years. Although certification is not required for all planning positions, some organizations prefer to hire certified planners.

Important Qualities

Analytical skills. Urban and regional planners analyze information and data from a variety of sources, such as market research studies, censuses, and environmental impact studies. They use statistical techniques and technologies such as geographic information systems (GIS) in their analyses to determine the significance of the data.

Communication skills. Urban and regional planners must be able to communicate clearly and effectively because they often give presentations and meet with a wide variety of audiences, including public officials, interest groups, and community members.

Decisionmaking skills. Urban and regional planners must weigh all possible planning options and combine analysis, creativity, and realism to choose the appropriate action or plan.

Management skills. Urban and regional planners must be able to manage projects, which may include overseeing tasks, planning assignments, and making decisions.

Writing skills. Urban and regional planners need strong writing skills because they often prepare research reports, write grant proposals, and correspond with colleagues and stakeholders.

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Facilities Planner Career Paths

Facilities Planner
Project Manager Purchasing Manager
Director Of Purchasing
10 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Owner Facilities Manager
Director Of Facilities
11 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Owner/Operator Construction Manager
Director Of Construction
13 Yearsyrs
Facilities Manager Operations Manager Property Manager
Real Estate Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Facilities Manager Account Manager Purchasing Manager
Director, Procurement
13 Yearsyrs
Facilities Project Manager Construction Manager Information Technology Project Manager
Manager, Project Management
9 Yearsyrs
Facilities Project Manager Construction Manager
Facilities Maintenance Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Facilities Project Manager Operations Manager Senior Manager
Planning Director
10 Yearsyrs
Senior Project Manager Owner Project Superintendent
Project Engineering Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Senior Project Manager Senior Information Technology Manager Senior Operations Manager
Logistics Director
9 Yearsyrs
Senior Project Manager Owner Maintenance Manager
Senior Facilities Manager
11 Yearsyrs
Consultant Architect Interior Designer
Design Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Consultant Senior Accountant Senior Finance Analyst
Planning Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Consultant Management Consultant Project Consultant
Controls Project Manager
11 Yearsyrs
Space Planner Designer Project Manager/Design Manager
Facilities Project Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Space Planner Project Manager/Design Manager Project Engineering Manager
Capital Project Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Maintenance Planner Operations Manager Operations Project Manager
Deputy Project Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Maintenance Planner Senior Planner Demand Planning Manager
Plans And Operations Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Program Manager Portfolio Manager Strategist
Business Strategist
7 Yearsyrs
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Do you work as a Facilities Planner?

Average Yearly Salary
View Detailed Salary Report
Min 10%
Median 50%
Median 50%
Median 50%
Median 50%
Median 50%
Median 50%
Median 50%
Max 90%
Highest Paying City
Colorado Springs, CO
Highest Paying State
North Dakota
Avg Experience Level
4.4 years
How much does a Facilities Planner make at top companies?
The national average salary for a Facilities Planner in the United States is $82,636 per year or $40 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $42,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $161,000.

Real Facilities Planner Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Senior Facility Planner Jacobs Engineering, Inc. Santa Ana, CA Oct 01, 2009 $112,000
Senior Facility Planner Jacobs Engineering Group, Inc. Santa Ana, CA Oct 01, 2009 $112,000
Senior Facility Planner (Architect) Genentech, Inc. South San Francisco, CA Sep 30, 2011 $110,226
Senior Facilities Planner Hellmuth Obata + Kassabaum, Inc. Houston, TX Jan 01, 2014 $104,000
Medical Facility Planner HKS, Inc. Washington, DC Aug 25, 2016 $100,000
Facility Planner HKS, Inc. Washington, DC Jan 15, 2013 $100,000
Senior Facilities Plannner Hellmuth, Obata & Kassabaum, LP Houston, TX Oct 01, 2012 $91,998
Facility Planner HKS, Inc. Washington, DC Jan 15, 2015 $90,000
Senior Facilities Planner Hellmuth, Obata & Kassabaum, Inc. Chicago, IL Mar 01, 2011 $75,000
Senior Facility Planner Jacobs Engineering, Inc. Cypress, CA Oct 01, 2009 $75,000
Facilities Planner RTKL Associates Inc. Dallas, TX Sep 01, 2013 $70,013
Clinical Facilities Planner Driscoll Children's Hospital Corpus Christi, TX Oct 19, 2015 $65,000
Strategic Facilities Planner Halsey McCormack & Helmer, Inc. New York, NY Sep 19, 2014 $63,000
Strategic Facilities Planner Halsey McCormack & Helmer New York, NY Sep 19, 2011 $60,000
Facilities Planner/Engineer Sunny's Investment Inc. Orange Park, FL Jul 23, 2009 $57,142
Facilities Planner Grand Supercenter, Inc. Lyndhurst, NJ Oct 24, 2007 $53,761
Strategic Facilities Planner Halsey McCormack & Helmer, Inc. New York, NY Jun 14, 2010 $53,000

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Top Skills for A Facilities Planner

  1. Facilities Management
  2. CAD
  3. Furniture Installations
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Involved in establishing and maintaining facilities management databases.
  • Prepared architectural design documents, specifications and AutoCAD drawings for building projects.
  • Performed space planning functions for office and manufacturing areas to maximize utilization of space.
  • Provide contract documents, cost estimates and technical assistance to the staff engineers and building trade technicians.
  • Work on 5 year budgets and future project estimates and plans for 4 local buildings totaling approximately one million square feet.


Average Salary:

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Top 10 Best States for Facilities Planners

  1. District of Columbia
  2. Oregon
  3. Nevada
  4. Washington
  5. Alaska
  6. California
  7. Massachusetts
  8. Colorado
  9. Rhode Island
  10. Maryland
  • (55 jobs)
  • (85 jobs)
  • (35 jobs)
  • (146 jobs)
  • (10 jobs)
  • (529 jobs)
  • (140 jobs)
  • (122 jobs)
  • (13 jobs)
  • (167 jobs)

Facilities Planner Demographics










Hispanic or Latino


Black or African American





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Foreign Languages Spoken














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Facilities Planner Education


Drexel University


University of Phoenix


University of Florida


Michigan State University


Wentworth Institute of Technology


University of Arizona


Texas Tech University


University of California - Berkeley


University of Wisconsin - Stevens Point


University of North Texas


Florida International University


Purdue University


Auburn University


Florida State University


Ferris State University


University of San Francisco


University of Oregon


San Jose State University


Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University


Boston College

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Interior Design




Drafting And Design




Parks And Recreation Management


Project Management


Construction Management


Urban Planning


Engineering And Industrial Management


Industrial Technology


Industrial Engineering




Environmental Design




Interior Architecture


Mechanical Engineering


Environmental Control Technologies/Technicians


Electrical Engineering Technology


Supply Chain Management

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