At River Street, planning is our primary practice. For more than 20 years, we have helped communities to face longstanding challenges and emerging opportunities head on. We provide assistance at all points in the planning process - from visioning and scenario evaluation to market assessment and impact analysis, through plan development and financing, to post-development evaluation and monitoring. The consensus vision we help to build can be shared and supported by diverse stakeholders. Our focus on outcomes builds capacity, strengthens local leadership, and shapes community pride and vision — vital ingredients for successful community action. We regularly manage complex and multi-disciplinary teams offering project, schedule and budget administration, quality control and assurance, and reporting systems. We build beautiful plans, authoring reports and promotional materials, including high quality photographs and illustrating with graphic design.

Our core practices:

  • Visioning and Consensus Building, including engagement, outreach, all forms of workshops and meetings, charrettes, online collaboration, and mediation.
  • Comprehensive Planning for sustainability at the local, regional and statewide level; small rural communities to cities, addressing all aspects of future planning from housing and downtown revitalization too pen including open space and agriculture preservation.
  • Resiliency and Disaster Recovery, including emergency response and assessment, recovery planning, green urbanism initiatives, implementation, finance, and FEMA coordination.
  • Community Development and Housing, including all forms of neighborhoods revitalization and empowerment, and housing analysis at all market points, including mixed use, arts-based, affordable, workforce and special needs.
  • Economic Development, from microbusiness development to brownfield redevelopment, including profiling, market and feasibility analysis, tourism development and site selection.
  • Waterfront and Downtown Revitalization, including Local Waterfront Revitalization Plans, blueway corridor strategies, and Main Street revitalization initiatives.
  • Land Management and GIS Development, from zoning and subdivision and other land management codes, design standards and guidelines, historic preservation ordinances, sustainability incentive structuring and compliance with SEQRA and NEPA.
  • Capacity Building, for organizations and communities including training, mentoring, strategic planning, project finance, grant writing and program administration.

River Street supports the "three legged stool" of communities: government, business, and nonprofit organizations. We work to scan and understand the ability of communities, and the organizations that support them, to fulfill their missions and improve community quality of life. We provide strategic planning, training and mentoring to help them succeed.

We are skilled grant writers and program administrators and have worked with our partners to raise over $300 Million dollars in commitments for projects worth over $1.5 billion. Our experience includes grant applications development and private placement of projects with banks and venture capitalists. We are familiar with a variety of creative finance tools including tax increment financing, special assessment districts and municipal bonding.

River Street has been fortunate to lead teams to complete many important community initiatives and partner with companies others as a subconsultant.


River Street Planning & Development
4 Ridge Road
Troy, New York 12180

Phone: 518.273.8980


About River Street

River Street Planning & Development, LLC is a NYS Certified Woman Business Enterprise owned by Margaret Irwin, formed in 1997 with offices in Troy, New York. The company employs five staff members and provides services to a diverse group of organizations including Federal, state, county, and municipal governments of all sizes, public agencies, private businesses, nonprofit organizations, universities, investors and developers in the northeastern United States.  Services offered include public meeting planning and facilitation, focus groups, mediation, economic development, downtown and Main Street revitalization, design and administration of small business support programs, land use planning, zoning, historic preservation, and housing and commercial market analysis. River Street specializes in facilitating community engagement and identifying a consensus vision that can be shared and supported by diverse stakeholders. We offer an effective, outcome-oriented approach that builds consensus and community capacity, strengthens local leadership and shapes community pride and vision –  vital ingredients for successful community action.

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