Susan Bell

Focus areas:    Transportation, affordable housing, planning, and civic engagement

Ms. Susan Bell has over 30 years of planning experience, serving in senior positions with Arlington County from 1983-2011.  She was Arlington County’s Zoning Administrator for 10 years and then served as Director of the Department of Community Planning, Housing and Development from 1998-2011.  Ms. Bell oversaw development review and approval, comprehensive planning, affordable housing, historic preservation, construction permits and inspections, code enforcement, and neighborhood-initiated capital projects.

Ms. Bell has been an active member of the Urban Land Institute (ULI) since 2002, served on the Executive Committee of the Washington District Council, is a national trainer for UrbanPlan for Public Officials, and has participated in or chaired several ULI technical assistance panels in the DMV.  She is a lifetime member of Leadership Arlington and Vice-Chair of the Arlington Partnership for Affordable Housing Board.

In recent years, Ms. Bell has consulted on a broad range of land use projects and regulatory issues to local governments and private clients.  Some projects include a community-wide community facility needs study; developing policy to reduce multi-family residential parking; development of zoning text amendments to meet specific policy objectives; and a land use analysis of the acquisition potential of affordable housing properties.

Ms. Bell holds a Master’s Degree in Urban and Regional Planning from George Washington University and a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science and American Studies from Dickinson College. 

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