Planner III

Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District
(650) 691-1200

Do you have a passion for outdoor recreation and open space? Do you seek an opportunity to work on a variety of planning, environmental review, design and construction projects that focus on preservation and public use of open space?  With the passage of the Measure AA bond measure in 2014, the Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District has been ramping up project planning and delivery to fulfill the commitments made to the public regarding greater outdoor recreational access and environmental education, protected open space lands, and natural resource restoration.  The District is seeking a Planner III who will manage key planning and design projects supporting public access and outdoor recreation in Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties.  The ideal candidate will possess an educational background in environmental planning or design, environmental sciences, architecture, landscape architecture, natural resource management, construction management, civil or structural engineering, or related field. The candidate should be an organized, creative, and energetic self-starter with excellent communication and project management skills, who enjoys working within a collaborative team dynamic. Top-level candidates should also be familiar with CEQA/environmental review and local, state, and federal land use laws and permitting processes, including the American for Disabilities Act (ADA).


The District manages a regional greenbelt system in the Santa Cruz Mountain region comprised of over 63,000 acres of land in 26 open space preserves, protected for public enjoyment and recreation. The District is a growing organization with a focused mission that guides our work, and where every employee makes an impact.  It’s an exciting time to be part of the District’s team!  If you are looking for a challenging opportunity to contribute to the legacy of open space preservation and recreation, we invite you to apply for this position.


About the Position:  The Planner III focuses on a wide variety of planning and capital improvement projects that include long-range planning; land use plans to increase public access, outdoor recreation, interpretation and enjoyment of District lands. In addition to supporting senior staff, the Planner III is tasked with performing complex professional level planning and analysis, developing recommendations for land use policies; preparing long-range preserve and site-specific plans to guide the use and management of District lands; directing the design phase of capital improvement projects such as trails and staging areas and staff facilities; conducting or overseeing studies to identify and evaluate environmental issues related to public access and natural and cultural resources; preparing requests for proposals; assisting in development of grant applications; preparing and/or assisting in the preparation of environmental review documents; and obtaining planning and environmental permits and initial approvals for District projects.  The position would use computer-based and/or other systems such as GIS for management and analysis of data regarding District lands, facilities, natural resources and activities.


The ideal candidate is expected to communicate well and collaborate closely with other departments to complete project requirements, work with local jurisdictional agencies to coordinate planning and permitting efforts; direct multidisciplinary teams of consultants; prepare and present clear and concise oral and written communications to senior staff, the Board of Directors and public; keep projects on schedule and on budget while remaining flexible to adjust priorities as needed; maintain well-organized and complete project documentation; and build trust with peers, community members, stakeholders, and District leadership. For additional information about the position, see the Job Description page on the District website. The position receives direct supervision from a Senior Planner.


Work Environment:  This position is part of the Planning Department at the District’s offices in Los Altos, California.  In addition to working in the office and providing project presentations to senior management, the Board of Directors, and Committees, and at public meetings, the Planner III will often work in the field and hike through steep terrain and wildland areas.  Field work will require driving in remote areas on dirt roads, working in temperatures ranging from cold and blustery to hot and dry. Ideal candidates will be comfortable working in these types of field conditions, as well as in an office environment.


Education and Experience:  Any combination of training and experience that would provide the required knowledge, skills, and abilities is qualifying. A typical way to obtain the required qualifications would be:  Equivalent to graduation from an accredited four-year college or university with major coursework in urban or regional planning, geography, landscape architecture, architecture, natural resource management, environmental planning, or a related field, and at least three (3) years of increasingly responsible experience in planning project management, preferably in parks, open space or related field, including at least one (1) year of supervisory and administrative responsibility.  A Master’s Degree is desirable.


Licenses & Certifications Required:   Possession of a valid California Driver’s License.


Benefits:   The Open Space District provides an excellent benefits package including health, life & disability insurance as well as CalPERS pension. Please see the Benefits page of the District website for details.


How to Apply:  Apply online at CalOpps.orgFinal filing date is December 15, 2017 at 5:00 p.m.

The CalOpps system will close to submission of applications at 5:00 p.m. on December 15th.  CalOpps will not accept submissions after 5:00 p.m. for applications begun before 5:00 p.m.


The following four (4) application items are required:

(1) A fully completed CalOpps employment application

(2) Cover Letter

(3) Resume

(4) Supplemental question responses.

Supplemental questions may be previewed at the beginning of the application; we recommend completing your responses on a separate saved document and pasting them in the application. Incomplete CalOpps employment applications will not be considered for the position. Applicants with the most relevant experience and qualifications suitable for the position will be contacted for interviews.


Recruitment Timeline:

First Interview: Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Final Interview/Written Exercise: Friday, January 12, 2018

Estimated Start Date: mid-February 2018

We recommend applicant’s schedules be open during this timeframe for panel interviews.


Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District is an Equal Opportunity Employer

Applicants with disabilities may request reasonable accommodation by contacting the Human Resources department. 

Put your passion for Open Space to work!

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