Community Planner

Washington, D.C
Oct 22, 2021
Oct 23, 2021
Full Time


Want to contribute to reimagining nationally important public spaces? Solve planning challenges? Envision modernizing spaces & places while preserving the historic landscape of the Nation's capital? Be an urban planner at NCPC! Collaborate on impactful, multifaceted initiatives such as Penn Ave, Parks & Open Space, Memorials for the Future, SW EcoDistrict, Flooding, Capital Improvements and more through strategic analysis, urban design, project review, plan development, and/or public engagement.
Learn more about this agency


As a Community Planner at NCPC, the incumbent's typical duties and responsibilities leading up to the full performance level of this position will include:
  • - Proposes resolutions to planning and urban design issues; and prepares technical planning reports, physical plans, and recommendations on plan and project proposals related to planning topics, such as: urban design, land use, zoning, transportation, security, commemoration, and equitable and sustainable development to address current problems, opportunities, and provide guidance for future development.
  • - Prepares and presents recommendations to the Commission, executive staff, project stakeholders and other audiences; and represents NCPC during project negotiation efforts and coordination with applicants and other federal and local partners.
  • - Applies best practices, NCPC legislative authorities, procedures, plans, policies, and project guidelines in compliance with Executive Orders, Federal Laws, the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA) and National Environmental Protection Act (NEPA) when reviewing, preparing, and presenting plans, projects, and reports.
  • - Performs comprehensive research and analysis in the form of data collection, mapping, extensive writing, and two- and three-dimensional graphic planning, using an array of written and digital resources and design technologies to devise technical planning reports, proposals, plans, policies, and recommendations.
  • - Maintains positive, collaborative relationships with interagency and interdisciplinary team members and representatives from federal and local agencies to coordinate and consult on the research, planning, and design of projects in the National Capital Region (NCR), including any related urban planning and design issues.
  • - Advises federal, regional, and local applicants on plans, policies, and procedures in coordination with other offices, federal and District entities, and representatives of the public.

Travel Required

Not required

Supervisory status

Promotion Potential


Conditions of Employment

  • COVID-19 Vaccination Required, if selected
  • Must be a U.S. Citizen or National
  • Resume and supporting documents (See "Required Documents")
  • Males born after 12-31-59 must be registered for Selective Service, unless exempt
  • Suitable for Federal employment, as determined by background investigation and drug screening
  • May be required to successfully complete a one-year probationary period
  • Travel, transportation, and relocation expenses will not be paid. All expenses associated with reporting for duty in this position will be the sole responsibility of the selected applicant.


In order to qualify, you must meet both the education and experience requirements described below. Your resume must clearly describe your relevant experience. To qualify for the basic education requirement, a copy of your unofficial transcript(s) must be provided with your application (unless otherwise stated). Applicants must meet all qualifications and eligibility requirements by the closing date of the announcement.

1. Bachelor's degree (or higher) in community planning or related field such as urban affairs, architecture, landscape architecture, urban design, civil engineering, sociology, geography, economics, political science, or public administration that included at least 12 semester hours in the planning process, socioeconomic and physical elements of planning, and urban and regional economic analysis, and development finance.

Note : Applicants with degrees in related fields, such as those listed above, who do not have 12 semester hours of specified course work must have had at least 1 year of work experience in community planning acquired under the supervision and guidance of a community planner.


2. A combination of education and experience - courses equivalent to a major in one of the above disciplines, or a combination of related courses totaling at least 24 semester hours in any combination of the above disciplines of which at least 12 semester hours were in the planning process, and socioeconomic and physical elements of planning; plus, appropriate experience or additional education.

- AND -

To be considered minimally qualified for this position, in addition to the basic education requirement , you must demonstrate that you have the required specialized experiencefor the respective grade level(s) to which you are applying:

Specialized Experience: Applicants must have at least one year of specialized work experience, equivalent to the GS-09 grade level in the Federal service, whether in public or private sector performing such duties as conducting planning research, data collection and integration, and urban design, land-use, zoning, and site analysis; providing draft recommendations on plan and project proposals; reviewing and analyzing plans and projects; assisting with preparing and delivering reports, presentations, and other graphic or multi-media information products to federal, state, local, regional, and/or public representatives by applying established urban design and planning principles, standards, and policies and using various planning and design technologies; integrating the use of technical planning and design tools such as Sketchup, InDesign, geospatial information systems (GIS) and/or 2D and 3D computer-aided design (CAD) for plan and project development, review, and analysis; assisting with public engagement activities; and assisting in collaborations with interagency and interdisciplinary teams on planning issues.


Education: Successful completion of at least a Ph.D. or an equivalent doctoral degree, or 3 years of progressively higher-level graduate education leading to a Ph.D. degree from an accredited college or university in a related field which demonstrates the knowledge, skills, and abilities necessary to perform the work of this position. ( NOTE : You must include transcripts.)


Combination of Education & Experience: An equivalent combination of the specialized experience and graduate level education described above. Only education in excess of two years (36 semester hours or equivalent) is creditable toward meeting the experience requirement when combining experience and education. To determine whether you qualify under this combination: First, divide your total months of qualifying specialized experience by 12; then, divide your semester hours of graduate education beyond two years by 18; and, lastly, add the two percentages. The total percentage must equal at least 100 percent to qualify. ( NOTE : You must include transcripts to verify your eligibility.)

Specialized Experience: Applicants must have at least one year of specialized work experience, equivalent to the GS-11 grade level in the Federal service, whether in public or private sector performing such duties as managing aspects of various projects and programs; coordinating with other offices, including federal, state, local, and regional representatives, as well as the general public; independently conducting complex research and land-use, zoning, and site analysis; providing recommendations to complex urban planning and design issues; preparing and presenting written reports and recommendations on plan and project proposals in graphic form to various audiences through the application of established urban design and planning principles, standards, and policies; reviewing, analyzing, and preparing plans and projects with the use of various technical planning and design tools, such as Sketchup, InDesign, GIS and/or 2D and 3D CAD; preparing and conducting public engagement activities; and collaborating with and managing interagency and interdisciplinary teams.

For current or former Federal employees applying under the Merit Promotion authority : In addition to the above qualifications , status applicants must have served at least one (1) year at the next lower grade level in the Federal service (for example, if applying for GS-12, applicants must have completed at least one year of Federal service at the GS-11 level). These applicants must meet all qualifications and eligibility requirements, including the time-in-grade restriction .

IN DESCRIBING YOUR EXPERIENCE, PLEASE BE CLEAR AND SPECIFIC. WE MAY NOT MAKE ASSUMPTIONS REGARDING YOUR EXPERIENCE. If your resume does not support your questionnaire answers, we will not allow credit for your response(s).

Experience refers to paid and unpaid experience including volunteer work. You will receive credit for all qualifying experience.


To qualify based on education, you MUST submit a legible copy of transcript(s) from an accredited institution with your name, school name, credit hours, course level/name, major(s), and grade-point average or class ranking. Transcripts do not need to be official but, if you are selected for this position and you used your education to qualify, you must provide official transcripts as a condition of employment.

Foreign Education: If you are using education completed in foreign colleges or universities to meet the qualification requirements, you must show that the education credentials have been evaluated by a private organization that specializes in interpretation of foreign education programs and such education has been deemed equivalent to that gained in an accredited U.S. education program; or full credit has been given for the courses at a U.S. accredited college or university. For further information, visit:

In addition, when reviewing applicant's transcripts, assumptions will not be made. Applicants MUST state which coursework is relevant when verifying credit hours in a related field to meet education qualifications.

ARE YOU USING YOUR EDUCATION TO QUALIFY? As part of your application package, you MUST provide transcripts, or equivalent documentation, as described above to support your educational claims. All materials must be submitted by the closing date of the announcement.

GRADUATE EDUCATION: One academic year of graduate education is considered to be the number of credits hours your graduate school has determined to represent one academic year of full-time study. Such study may have been performed on a full-time or part-time basis. If you cannot obtain your graduate school's definition of one year of graduate study, 18 semester hours (or 27 quarter hours) should be considered as satisfying the requirement for one year of full-time graduate study.

There is no substitution of education for experience to be eligible for the GS-12 grade level or above.

Additional information

Veterans Preference Claims: To claim 5-point veterans' preference, a copy of your DD-214 showing character of discharge under honorable conditions (Member 4 copy) is required. For veterans within 120 days of discharge, you must submit signed documentation from the Armed Forces dated within 120 days of your separation certifying: (1) expected release/retirement date from active duty; (2) discharge under honorable conditions; (3) pay grade/rank/rate at time of discharge; (4) dates of active duty service; and (5) any campaign or expeditionary medals received. Enlisted record briefs and military ID do NOT qualify as certification. To claim 10-point preference (e.g. Disabled Veteran, Purple Heart recipient, Derived Preference for spouse/widow(er)/parent), the SF-15, "Application for 10-Point Veterans' Preference" is also required, plus the corresponding proof of documentation. For more information on veterans' preference, resources are here and here . For information on derived preference, go here . For information on Veterans Employment Opportunities Act (VEOA) eligibility under Merit Promotion, go here .

Interagency Career Transition Assistance Plan (ICTAP) provides eligible displaced Federal competitive service employees with selection priority over other candidates for competitive service vacancies. If your agency has notified you in writing that you are a displaced employee eligible for ICTAP consideration, you may receive selection priority if you: 1) meet the ICTAP eligibility requirements; 2) apply as instructed in this announcement; and 3) are found well-qualified. To be well qualified, you must satisfy all qualification requirements and rate equivalent to the Well Qualified or better category using established category rating criteria. Proof of eligibility is required with your application (e.g. a copy of written notification of ICTAP eligibility or separation personnel action). ICTAP eligibility details are here .

Promotion Potential: The full performance level of this position is GS-13. Promotion is neither guaranteed nor implied and is based solely on ability to satisfactorily perform the work of the position, existing work at the next grade level, and supervisory recommendation. The salary range represents GS-11, step 1 through GS-12, step 10. Starting salary is set in accordance with applicable pay setting regulations.

Selection: More than one position may be filled from this announcement. It may also be used to fill additional positions if similar vacancies occur within 90 days of the issue date of the referral certificate.

COVID-19 Vaccination : As required by E.O. 14043, Federal employees require full COVID-19 vaccination regardless of the duty location or work arrangement (e.g., telework, remote work, etc.), subject to such exceptions as required by law. If selected, you must provide documentation of proof of full vaccination by 11/22/21; or before appointment start date, if appointment begins after Nov. 22. Additional details, including legal exceptions, will be provided upon selection. NCPC is currently in an expanded telework posture. If selected, you may be expected to temporarily telework even if you reside outside the local commuting area. Once employees return to office, you will be expected to report to the duty station within a designated timeframe. Depending on the telework policy, you may be eligible to request to continue to telework one or more days a pay period.

How You Will Be Evaluated

You will be evaluated for this job based on how well you meet the qualifications above.

Once your complete application is received, it will be evaluated to determine qualifications for the position. If you meet the qualification requirements, your application will be placed in one of three categories using category rating under delegated examining procedures: Highly Qualified, Well Qualified, or Qualified based on your score. Within these categories, qualified applicants eligible for veteran's preference will receive selection priority over non-preference eligible. Veterans' preference points do not apply in category rating. For applicants under the merit promotion authority, VEOA eligibles are rated and ranked under the same assessment as other merit promotion candidates and must rank among the best qualified candidates in order to receive consideration. Veterans' preference does not apply to merit promotion actions. The amount of experience or training will not itself be accepted as proof of qualification for any grade. Your application will be assessed based on demonstrated experience in the competencies/ knowledge, skills, and abilities (KSAs) identified below. Your relevant personal, educational, and work experiences will be evaluated on the following fundamental competencies:
  • - Knowledge of established urban design and planning principles, methodologies, analysis techniques, and related policies.
  • - Ability to devise innovative resolutions to complex planning issues.
  • - Ability to communicate effectively in verbal, written, and graphic form.
  • - Skill in performing comprehensive research and analysis on various urban planning areas such as land use, zoning, population densities, transportation, environmental conditions, historic preservation, and physical design considerations such as development pattern, use, function, and spatial relationships among building and open spaces.

Background checks and security clearance

Security clearance
Not Required

Drug test required

Position sensitivity and risk
Non-sensitive (NS)/Low Risk

Trust determination process

Required Documents

Note: Failure to submit a resume or required supporting documentation may result in elimination for further consideration.

To apply for this position, you MUST provide a complete Application Package which includes:
Resume to include dates of employment (month and year), hours worked per week, positions held, and detailed description of your duties and responsibilities demonstrating experience in the fundamental competencies listed above in this announcement.
  • Completed Assessment Questionnaire
  • Supporting Documents:
    • - College Transcript(s)
    • - Veterans' Preference Documentation ( if applicable) , e.g., DD-214 Member Copy 4 showing type of discharge/character of service, SF-15 Form and required documentation, VA letter, etc. See "Additional Information" in this announcement for resources.
    • - Interagency Career Transition Assistance Program (ICTAP) Eligibility Documentation ( if applicable ), e.g., Certification of Expected Separation, Reduction-In-Force Separation Notice, or Notice of Proposed Removal; SF-50 that documents the RIF separation action; and most recent performance appraisal. See "Additional Information" in this announcement for resources.
    • - FOR CURRENT OR FORMER FEDERAL EMPLOYEES : In addition to the other required (applicable) documents in this list, you also must submit the following documents:
      • - SF-50 (indicating the current grade/step and tenure group, e.g. latest WGI/WRI SF-50)
      • - Performance Appraisal (Most Recent)

    If you are relying on your education to meet qualification requirements:

    Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education in order for it to be credited towards qualifications. Therefore, provide only the attendance and/or degrees from schools accredited by accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education .

    Failure to provide all of the required information as stated in this vacancy announcement may result in an ineligible rating or may affect the overall rating.

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