The League of Women Voters of Sussex County will host a public forum, “Dissecting Master Planning in Sussex County,” from 7 to 9 p.m. April 11 in County Council Chambers, 2 The Circle, Georgetown.

A panel of local experts will discuss the formation of master plans and how these plans can be an effective tool to combat developmental sprawl. The differences between comprehensive plans, master plans and Transportation Improvement Districts will be explained, as well as the identity and roles of county and state agencies involved in the implementation process. Examples of how master plans have worked effectively in other areas of Delaware will also be presented.

As the final draft of Sussex County’s 2018 Comprehensive Plan is reviewed by County Council for submission to the state for approval in July, the league encourages continued citizen involvement in the planning process. The purpose of this forum is to gain better understanding of some of the important concepts related to wise land use planning and to learn about ways to ensure that the vision set forth in the plan is successfully implemented.

Panelist David Edgell, circuit-rider planner for Kent County, will explain the differences between a comprehensive plan, master plan and Transportation Improvement District; how each affects the other and in what sequence they are developed; and how these plans are used to manage development and growth.

Rob Pierce, Milford’s planning and development director, will describe his role as the architect of Milford's master mlan and how interactions between the town of Milford, Sussex County, Kent County and the state of Delaware were managed during implementation.

Ann Marie Townshend, city manager, town of Lewes, will discuss how master plans are initiated and who initiates, leads and monitors the master planning process to insure a successful outcome.

A 45-minute Q&A session will occur after the panelists’ presentations. The program will be live streamed at, and the speakers’ PowerPoint presentations will be posted on the league’s website after the forum.

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