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City Appoints New City Planning Director

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Stephen Benson

The City of Tampa has appointed Stephen Benson as Director of the City Planning Department. His appointment follows the retirement of long-time City Planner Randy Goers.

In this role, Benson will continue to lead the City’s comprehensive, multi-disciplinary approach to guiding growth, land use development, and redevelopment, and advance citywide planning initiatives that support the Transforming Tampa’s Tomorrow (T3) strategic plan.

Benson has more than a decade of experience in urban planning and land use policy and has served as the City's Chief Planner since October 2020. He joined the City in 2019 to coordinate the Mobility Department's strategic transportation policy priorities and was instrumental in transitioning the streetcar extension project from the planning phase to the design phase, launching Mayor Jane Castor’s Crosswalks to Classrooms initiative, and most recently, developing a land use study for transit-oriented development.
Prior to joining the City, Benson worked in the private sector and at the Florida Department of Transportation, where he served as the Metropolitan Planning Administrator for FDOT District 7. He previously served on the board of the Hillsborough County City-County Planning Commission, and has a strong background in urban and regional planning, transportation planning and engineering, urban design, and public administration. 

Benson is a third generation Tampa native, an AICP-certified planner, and a proud graduate of the University of South Florida with degrees in Geography and Urban and Regional Planning. 

Benson's position as Director of City Planning will be effective Monday, November 22, 2021.  

About the City Planning Department

Launched by Mayor Jane Castor in 2020, and led by former City Planning Director Randy Goers, the City Planning Department is part of the Development and Economic Opportunity portfolio and is comprised of a team of subject matter experts in land use and zoning, natural resources, and transportation. The team works closely with all City departments as well as Hillsborough County, and surrounding counties and regional organizations, such as the City-County Planning Commission and the Metropolitan Planning Commission.