Kannapolis hires a planning director

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Zachary D. (Zac) Gordon has been selected as planning director for the city of Kannapolis. Since 2005, Gordon has served as the principal planner for the town of Huntersville, where he has been responsible for the town’s long-range planning efforts and oversight of its growth management ordinances.
During his time with Huntersville, Gordon has overseen a number of long-range plans, including the Town of Huntersville 2030 Community Plan, which was the recipient of a 2012 Outstanding Planning Award from the NC Chapter of the American Planning Association.
Gordon will serve as the city’s first in-house planning director. Since 1987 the city has contracted all its planning and development services work through the Kannapolis based firm, Benchmark Inc. He was chosen from 50 candidates after an intensive qualification and interview process.
“As our city continues to grow we are seeing an increase in commercial and business development. As we prepare to centralize all of our city services and staff in the new City Hall the timing was appropriate for us to bring our planning and development services in-house. Benchmark has been a great partner over the years and is committed to work with Zac as we begin this transition,” said Kannapolis City Manager Mike Legg.
Gordon will be responsible for hiring additional staff members who will oversee the city’s long-range land use and planning efforts, transportation planning, code enforcement, mapping, adherence to the Unified Development Ordinance and zoning ordinances. He will also be an important addition to the current efforts to revitalize downtown Kannapolis.
Gordon has 26 years of planning experience. He has a bachelor of geography and political science degree from State University of New York and a master of city and regional planning degree from Cornell University. He has served as the planning director for the town of Exeter, N.H., and senior planner for the city of East Providence, R.I. before joining the town of Huntersville nine years ago.
He is a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners, the American Planning Association–NC Chapter and the Urban Land Institute.
He and his wife, Lisa, have four children, and are active in their church and community. He will assume his duties in Kannapolis on Oct. 27.