Planner I/II

Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District

Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District

Planner I/II*

Planner I Pay Range/month: $6,107 - $7,625 – plus full benefits including CalPERS Pension

Planner II Pay Range/month:  $6,412 - $8,006 – plus full benefits including CalPERS Pension

*The District determines hiring level depending on qualifications

Open Until Filled. First Review of Applications on April 17, 2018


Do you have a passion for outdoor recreation, trails and open space? Do you enjoy working on a variety of planning, environmental review, design and construction projects that focus on preservation and public use of open space? Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District is seeking to fill three positions for a Planner I or II who will provide support on and/or manage key planning and design projects for public access and outdoor recreation in Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties.  The ideal candidate will possess an educational background in urban or environmental planning or design, environmental sciences, architecture, landscape architecture, construction management, civil 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 processes.


About the District:  The District is a regional greenbelt system in the Santa Cruz Mountain region comprised of over 63,000 acres of land in 26 extraordinary open space preserves, permanently 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.  If you are looking for an outstanding opportunity to contribute to the legacy of open space protection and outdoor recreation, working with an incredible team of like-minded colleagues, we invite you to apply for this position!  We invite you to view our Working for Midpen video on our Employment Opportunities page.


About the Position: 

Planner II:  Focuses on a wide variety of planning and capital improvement projects that increase public access and enjoyment of District lands. In addition to supporting senior staff, the Planner II is tasked with analyzing and 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; 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 and administration of grant applications; preparing and/or assisting in the preparation of environmental review documents; obtaining planning and environmental permits and initial approvals for District projects; and reviewing external agency projects for impacts on District lands.  The position uses computer-based and/or other systems such as MS Projects, Sharepoint, GIS for management and analysis of data regarding District lands, facilities, natural resources and activities.

Planner I: Supports with planning and project management as described in the tasks above and coordinates new signage plans for public access improvements and new areas to be opened to the public.


The ideal candidate is expected to communicate 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. The position is based upon the Planner I and II job descriptions, focused on planning functions (see the Job Description page of the District website for Planner I and Planner II). The positions receive direct supervision from a Planner III or 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, the Planner I/II will often work in the field and hike through steep terrain and wildland areas.  Fieldwork 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: 

Planner I: Equivalent to graduation from an accredited four-year college or university with major coursework in urban or regional planning, community development, business or public administration.  One year of responsible architectural, landscape or planning experience including computer graphics or design; experience with design, research and basic reports is highly desirable.

Planner II: Equivalent to graduation from an accredited four-year college or university with major coursework in urban planning, community development, environmental sciences, or a related field and one year of increasing responsible experience in urban or open space planning, preferably on projects related to those found at the District.

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: This recruitment will remain open until the positions are filled. The first review of applications is on April 17, 2018.  The application window may close at any time after that date without additional notice. Interested applicants are encouraged to apply early.


Apply online via 

The following application items are required:

1. 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. Incomplete applications will not be considered for the position. Applicants with the most relevant experience and qualifications suitable for the positions, as determined by the District, will be contacted for interviews. 


Recruitment Timeline: We recommend applicants’ schedules be open during this timeframe for panel interviews:

First Interview: April 24, 2018  

Final Interview/Written Exercise: May 2, 2018

Estimated Start Date: late May/early June 2018




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!