North Huntingdon Township
Comprehensive Plan Update
REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS
Release Date: June 16, 2022
Proposals Due: July 8, 2022
1. PROJECT PURPOSE AND BACKGROUND
The North Huntingdon Township Board of Commissioner’s is seeking a solution-focused consultant with experience in comprehensive planning, community planning, civic engagement, and innovative problem-solving to assist the Township with an update to the existing Comprehensive Plan. The plan will be developed through a partnership between the Planning Department and the selected firm. The prospective firm should outline how planning still will be involved in the planning process and formation of the implementation strategies and structure of the plan.
The successful consultant will work with the North Huntingdon Twp. Commissioners, the Township’s Planning Commission, staff, and subcommittees to develop this plan with the Township. Guided by the requirements of the PA Municipalities Planning Code, the new plan will incorporate changes since the current plan with respect to demographics, land use, housing, and economics.
The final project deliverable is an innovative, implementable comprehensive plan that incorporates web-based technologies and is an easily-accessible and understandable plan that will incorporate community involvement and provide a method to easily track and measure progress toward meeting our goals and objectives over the next ten (10) years. To this end, interim deliverables will include planning documents that have the support of the Board of Commissioners. The plan must be strategic, thorough and achievable. In addition, it will provide the Township the framework and direction that addresses both the needs of our community and future growth.
For a more detailed vision of the Township Comprehensive Plan update, please refer to
2. PROJECT TIMELINE
The Comprehensive Plan adoption is targeted for the Spring of 2023. Prospective firms must have the resources and capability of meeting the update timeline.
3. N. HUNTINDON TWP. BACKGROUND INFORMATION
Since 1772, North Huntingdon has thrived as a family-oriented community with a small-town feel, just minutes away from major cities within the region, including the Pittsburgh business district. Residents and businesses alike value the high quality of life, outstanding schools, top-notch amenities, and access to the world business community North Huntingdon provides.
Strategically located in Westmoreland Township, Pennsylvania between downtown Pittsburgh and Greensburg, North Huntingdon offers convenient access to the region. With major highways, including PA Route 30 and Interstate 376/PA Turnpike, intersecting within the Township, North Huntingdon connects to southwestern Pennsylvania’s extensive infrastructure, including two major airports, numerous rail yards, and the region’s vast waterways.
With lower taxes and overall cost competitiveness compared to neighboring communities, North Huntingdon remains an ideal location for families and businesses alike. North Huntingdon’s diverse and stable economy has weathered national recessions and its residents have seen average income levels on the rise. More than 25 percent of Township residents work within the community, while more than half work less than 30 minutes away in Pittsburgh and Greensburg. As a major retail corridor, Route 30 provides a conduit for thousands of visitors to the area each month.
4. RFP SUBMISSION
a. N. Huntingdon Twp. assures that no person shall be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be otherwise subjected to discrimination on the grounds of race, gender, creed, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or in violation of the Pennsylvania Human Relations Act, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, religious creed, ancestry, age, sex, national origin, handicap or disability, or in violation of any applicable local, state, or federal laws. With advance notification, accommodations may be provided for those with special needs related to language, speech, sight, or hearing. If you have a request for a special need, wish to file a complaint, or desire additional information, please contact Harry R. Faulk at firstname.lastname@example.org or 724-863-3806 ext. 125.
b. The point of contact for purposes of this RFP is the N. Huntingdon Twp. Planning
Department Director referred to as Director as shown below:
Ryan Fonzi, Director of Planning & Zoning
N. Huntingdon Twp. Planning Department
11279 Center Highway
N. Huntington, PA 15642
c. Pre-Submission Conference and Questions
A voluntary pre-submission meeting will be held at 11:00 A.M. (EST/local time), on Monday, June 27, 2022 to address questions from any interested firms. All questions will be documented in written form and posted on the Planning Department website following the meeting.
While attendance at this meeting is not mandatory for those wishing to submit proposals, it is strongly encouraged and will be considered during proposal review and ranking.
The Planning Director will accept written questions from prospective responders until June 30, 2022. As reasonably as possible and appropriate, written responses will be prepared and distributed to all that have received or requested the RFP packet and a copy of the questions and answers will be hosted on the Planning Department website. Questions may be submitted by mail or, preferably, by e-mail to the Planning Director.
The director/staff will not respond to telephone inquiries and will not meet individually with any potential consultants.
d. Submission Deadline
In order to be considered, proposals must be received no later than 3:00 p.m. (Eastern Daylight Savings Time) on Friday, July 8, 2022, and shall be submitted to the Director of Planning & Zoning.
Proposals arriving after the closing date and time shall be considered late and shall be rejected. Hard copy submissions will be accepted but are not required.
5. RFP RESPONSE CONTENT
a. A transmittal letter must accompany the RFP submission. The purposes of this letter are to transmit the proposal, acknowledge the receipt of any addenda and to allow the firm an opportunity to indicate their ability to provide the services requested. The letter must contain the following information for the primary firm and any sub-consultants or partner firms:
Primary Contact Name
Primary Contact Address
Primary Phone and Email
Business Expertise (and level of inter-firm coordination if applicable)
Minority or Women-Owned Business Status (if applicable)
Identification of subcontractors or partnerships and clearly identified roles
b. A narrative overview of how the responding firm will meet and develop the desired criteria contained within Appendix A: Vision, Qualifications and Experience. The narrative should specifically include:
how the firm will ensure the Vision statements are achieved throughout the process
how the firm will approach the partnership, with Planning Department staff playing an integral role in the development of the Comprehensive Plan
c. A conceptual schedule serving to graphically depict milestone and benchmark dates for public input, reports, presentations and project progress. Please use a project completion date of March 31, 2023 for this portion of the submission.
d. A list of key personnel employed by the consultant with corresponding titles and resumes provided as well as a list of the personnel that are anticipated to be assigned to the project along with their responsibilities, qualifications and experience. The principal point of contact should be identified. Additionally, the hourly rate for each identified person shall be provided.
e. A proposed not-to-exceed budget which shall be based upon the Comprehensive Plan Requirements for Counties contained within the PA Municipalities Planning Code requirements; public meetings and public engagement strategies; steering committee attendance; and costs associated with achieving the Vision and Qualifications outlined in Appendix A. Cost proposals must be detailed and may include, as separate budget lines, other value-added planning best practices, innovative planning techniques or proprietary approaches to sound community and comprehensive planning that have not been outlined within this RFP. Cost proposals should also outline the final plan deliverables as well as interim deliverables as it relates to invoicing timing.
6. CONSULTANT SELECTION PROCESS
A selection committee shall review the submissions and develop a list of qualified responders to advance in the selection process. Interviews may be scheduled. The Township reserves the right, at their discretion, to interview none, some or all of the applicants. In addition, the Township reserves the right to request modifications to the proposals. Following the interview process, if applicable, the selection committee will recommend entering into a contract with the firm that best suits the needs and vision of the planning effort based upon the submission narrative, staffing, proposed cost and fit with Township mission as referenced in Section 3. All contracts with the Township of N. Huntingdon must be approved in a public forum by the N. Huntingdon Twp. Board of Commissioners. A Notice to Proceed will be issued to the successful responder once the recommendation is approved.
7. CONTRACT PROVISIONS AND INFORMATION
After N. Huntingdon Twp. makes its selection, it shall proceed to negotiate a contract at a mutually-agreeable price based upon a Scope of Work for the project. If the Township is unable to negotiate a satisfactory contract with the selection committee’s top firm, the Township shall formally end negotiations with that firm and begin to negotiate with the next firm recommended by the selection committee. Negotiations shall continue in this sequence until a contract is agreed upon or if the Township decides to re-post the RFP.
The performance of this contract shall be in accordance with all Federal, State and local laws as may be applicable. Any contract between N. Huntingdon Twp. and the consultant shall be subject to the rules and regulations of any agencies funding this work. Additionally, in the event that N. Huntingdon Twp. procures grant funding assistance, the contract shall contain all necessary provisions of that grant award contract. N. Huntingdon Township reserves the right to reject any and all proposals, and to waive irregularities.
The contract between the Township and the selected consulting firm will include the following non-negotiable contract provisions:
1. Indemnification of the Township
2. Non-indemnification of the contracted firm
3. Forum selection (N. Huntingdon Twp., PA Court of Common Pleas)
4. Choice of Law (Commonwealth of Pennsylvania)
5. Termination for convenience / termination for cause by the Township
6. Work-for-Hire Transfer of Copyrights / Intellectual Property
7. Township ownership of the instruments of service / deliverables / data
8. Prevailing party attorneys’ fees
10. Suspension and debarment
11. Release of liability of the contractor
12. Insurance coverage and Township status as an additional insured
13. Terms of payment and invoicing, including 45 day payment period
14. Data security, confidentiality, and use of Township data and information
15. Any and all federal and state contract provisions required as a result of grant funding
The Township reserves the right to request additional contract provisions it deems necessary as needed to protect the best interest of the Township.
A separate “Data Sharing Agreement” will be signed by the selected firm and the
N. Huntingdon Twp. GIS Department upon a Notice to Proceed being issued.
8. RFP COMMITMENT, CANCELLATON, AND INCURRED EXPENSES
This Request for Proposals offers no commitment of funding or contractual obligations until such time as the selected firm and N. Huntingdon Twp. settle on a mutually agreeable Scope of Work and Project Budget and commit to both via a publicly approved contract by the Board of Commissioners. Additionally, the RFP does not commit N. Huntingdon Twp. to pay any cost incurred in the preparation of the submittal, or to procure or contract for services.
The Township reserves the right to negotiate with all qualified responders, or to cancel in part or in its entirety this request for qualifications, if it is in the best interest of the Township to do so.
Request for Proposals - Appendix A
Vision, Qualifications and Experience
N. Huntingdon Twp. desires to contract for qualified professional services to assist the Township in the preparation of a comprehensive plan. The Township seeks a qualified, solution-focused consultant team with demonstrated professional planning, economic analysis, government services analysis, and economic development experience. The Vision, Qualifications and Experience outlined below presents a minimum effort expected by the consultant selected for the project and will be used as part of the evaluation matrix in selecting a preferred consulting firm.
The N. Huntingdon Twp. Planning Department fully envisions this Comprehensive Plan update to be groundbreaking and cutting edge compared with previous ventures. Gone are the days of 300+ documents that simply hold up other 300+ page documents. The Planning Department envisions a product that clearly and concisely identifies the issues currently facing the Township and those that may arise in the future. The Plan will then address the problems in a holistic manner, not the typical “silo” approach of many comprehensive plans. The Comprehensive Plan is a tangible, living document with clear, realistic goals that have achievable objectives and measurable indicators of that achievement outlined. The Planning Department envisions a product that is easily accessible and understandable by the general public and is presented in a format that is easily read and used by the Department, the Township and the public at large via a number of digital media.
To further clarify the Vision, the Planning Department intends to develop the Comprehensive
Plan with the following vision statements in mind:
The Plan will focus on problems faced by the Township and implementable action steps and measurable indicators of progress to provide solutions; the Plan will not be developed in a traditional “silo” approach
The Plan will be implementable, with a limited selection of achievable objectives as opposed to a lengthy goal list that is not attainable within the 1-year time frame
The Plan is to be created in ArcGIS Online so as to better facilitate access and ease of use
The Plan is to be created in a visually engaging and attractive manner and formatted with a keen eye towards graphic design appeal. It will include formats optimized for digital applications, including websites and mobile devices
The Plan will seek to identify and incorporate innovative and contemporary, collaborative planning techniques into the methods, goals and objectives
The Plan will involve specific and value-added citizen engagement, especially among traditionally disadvantaged groups such as low-to-moderate income, minority and limited-English proficiency populations
The Plan will strategically incorporate other Township planning initiatives into the overall development and implementation strategies
The Plan will be developed cooperatively with the Planning Department and GIS Department staff as this is viewed more as a partnership than simply handing off the comprehensive plan to be written by the consultant team
The Plan will be developed with the understanding and framework of being easily updated by Planning Department staff in the future
The final Plan end product will include an Executive Summary
QUALIFICATIONS AND EXPERIENCE
The evaluation of prospective consulting firms will be based upon the following qualifications and experience criteria:
Previous experience (no more than three projects) preparing comprehensive or community plans for Pennsylvania counties with a description of each project
A qualified contingent of staff, either within the primary firm or within if the subcontractor firm (if applicable) with relevant skills, qualifications and backgrounds as related to comprehensive planning
Demonstrated experience preparing comprehensive plans in accordance with the PA Municipalities Planning Code
Ability to utilize contemporary mapping techniques and applications to collect and analyze pertinent data and present data in visually-appealing and compelling manner
Demonstrated experience with the ESRI suite of products including, but not limited to, ArcGIS
Demonstrated experience in performing a variety of analysis, including but not limited to: economic market analysis, real estate market analysis, fiscal impact analysis, land use and environmental resources analysis
Experience utilizing innovative and engaging public relations and public engagement techniques along with graphic design skills to create contemporary public-facing, digital-friendly and multi-media materials
Ability to conduct comprehensive inventories of resources and assets such as housing availability, environmental resources, community facilities, infrastructure (water, sewer, roads) and land use patterns
Demonstrated experience in coordinating Township-level planning efforts with local municipalities, authorities, agencies, non-profit organizations and businesses
Ability to incorporate existing municipal plans and efforts into a Township comprehensive plan
A demonstrated understanding of rural planning issues with appropriate efforts and initiatives to address them