Diamond Awards to bring new awareness to local planning projects

Updated: Aug 31

The Diamond Awards resurrect an awards program that once honored many of the region’s most iconic development projects while adding an updated lens for judging regional projects


Orlando, Florida (August 19, 2022) - As part of the ongoing celebration honoring the East Central Florida Regional Planning Council’s 60th anniversary, we are proud to announce the East Central Florida Regional Diamond Awards. Taking place on January 18, 2023, at the Lake Mary Events Center, the Diamond Awards will showcase the best planning projects, programs, and plans from across the region.


The Awards are an opportunity to applaud local or regional projects that promote smart growth practices by highlighting projects and plans that further equity, healthy neighborhoods, conservation, and economic vitality.


“We’re so excited about the Diamond Awards. The Council is a convener of good ideas to improve the quality of life in the region. The concept for the awards came from our desire to celebrate all the great planning initiatives being realized across our region. This is our way of giving back to those who create and implement these ideas and making east central Florida the amazing place to live, work, play and learn,” explained ECFRPC Executive Chair, Commissioner Emily Bonilla. “Serving as the Chair during the 60th anniversary has been a true honor, and I’m excited to see a lasting impact of the anniversary through these regional awards. The hardest part of these awards will be narrowing down the list to just five winners.”


The Awards ceremony will showcase leading projects, programs, and plans across the region and provide an opportunity to engage in deeper conversations about the winning projects. The event will include a panel discussion with project representatives to help publicize lessons learned from these award-winning projects to local community leaders. Breakfast will be served and a sponsor showcase will also take place.


The Diamond Awards are the next generation of a long-dormant award showcase that the ECFRPC last held in the early 1990s. Projects highlighted in those original awards included the master plan for Orlando International Airport, Uptown Altamonte, and the original city concept for EPCOT.


“By the time I joined the ECFRPC twenty years ago, the annual awards had long been retired,” notes ECFRPC Executive Director Tara McCue. “The Diamond Awards are an excellent way to honor the region while reviving a once popular event hosted by the Council. I can’t wait to see the many great planning concepts submitted for the regional awards.”


Applications are now being accepted through September 30, 2022. Sponsorship opportunities are also now being accepted. Information for the awards application and sponsorships can be found at ECFRPC.com/awards.

About the East Central Florida Regional Planning Council

Established in 1962 as an area-wide association of governments, the ECFRPC is represented by 32 Council members and a skilled staff that provides technical assistance to governments and organizations within the East Central Florida region. The ECFRPC covers eight counties in East Central Florida, including Brevard, Lake, Marion, Orange, Osceola, Seminole, Sumter, and Volusia. These eight counties include 78 towns and cities.