Principal Transportation Planner

Nelson\Nygaard Consulting Associates, Inc.
Atlanta, GA, 30303, USA
Application close date: 

Nelson\Nygaard Consulting Associates is a mid-sized sustainable transportation planning firm, committed to developing transportation systems that promote vibrant, sustainable, and accessible communities. Our approximately 120 firmwide staff members exclusively focus on conducting projects that promote increased transit, bicycling, and walking mode share. Our primary areas of expertise include transit planning, multi-modal transportation, Transportation Demand Management (TDM), parking management for smart growth objectives, pedestrian and bicycle planning, paratransit and community transportation, and other related disciplines.

We are currently seeking to expand our Atlanta office and are seeking one highly organized, independent, forward-thinking Principal Transportation Planner.  Areas of specialization for this position may include any of Nelson\Nygaard’s core sectors: transit, paratransit, Complete Streets, parking/TDM, or multimodal planning.

Being a Principal Planner involves multiple responsibilities. You will be based in Atlanta. You will be expected to be able to win and manage projects of all sizes, have major roles in large projects, and provide guidance to the office’s excellent junior staff.

Your projects may be located anywhere throughout the US and possibly even overseas, and thus a willingness, and desire, to travel is essential. You will work closely with Nelson\Nygaard’s senior and junior staff in our Atlanta office, and also with staff in our other offices throughout the country. Our approach is to bring the most appropriate staff together, irrespective of where they are based, as working together produces better outcomes and improves all of our skills.


Salary and Benefits

Nelson\Nygaard offers a flexible, friendly work environment that encourages diversity and creativity. Benefits of the position include:

  • Flexible work hours and working arrangements, including some flexibility to work remotely as needed
  • Self-directed work program -- ability to build/maintain a professional focus area of personal interest
  • Dynamic, collaborative and challenging work environment centered on fast-paced project-based work
  • Relaxed, congenial office environment with minimal bureaucracy
  • Opportunities for domestic and occasional international travel
  • Ability to gain a lot of experience quickly on a variety of projects and project types
  • Opportunity to work with one of the most dynamic and innovative group of planners in the US, including highly talented junior and support staff
  • Competitive pay and benefits

The annual salary range equivalent for this position is industry competitive, depending on qualifications and years of experience. Benefits include fully paid health and dental insurance, optional vision plan, Zipcar membership, pre-tax transit or bicycling benefit, a 401K/profit-sharing program and Paid Time-Off (PTO).

Nelson\Nygaard is an Equal Employment Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer.


Please combine your cover letter and resume into a single PDF with the filename format "Firstname Lastname – Atlanta Principal Planner.pdf".

Please send materials to with the subject line "Atlanta Principal Planner".

No phone calls, please.


The ideal candidate should have a broad range of transportation and urban planning experience.  At the very least a candidate should be able to demonstrate significant expertise in at least five of the following areas:

  • City- or Region-wide Transportation Planning and Analysis
  • Light Rail, Commuter Rail, and/or Streetcar Planning
  • Bicycle/Pedestrian Facility Planning
  • Transit Station Area Planning
  • Parking Planning
  • Paratransit and Demand-Responsive Services
  • Transport Policy, Funding and Governance
  • Street Design Guidelines
  • Advanced Graphic Communication (InDesign, Photoshop)
  • Computer Traffic Modeling
  • Data Collection and Performance Assessments
  • Campus Transportation Planning


  1. You must have at least 10 years of increasingly responsible experience in your area of expertise.
  2. You must demonstrate successful and sustained experience in business development, i.e., bringing in projects.
    If you are coming from a government agency, you must be able to convince us that you will be able to do this within one or two years of starting at Nelson\Nygaard.
  3. You must have at least a Bachelor’s Degree in city/urban planning, transportation engineering or related planning field, or equivalent experience. A Master’s Degree in one of these fields is highly preferred.
  4. Knowledge of the Atlanta region and its transportation planning practices is highly preferred.

In addition, you must be able to demonstrate excellent written and verbal skills, the ability to manage projects within budget, work successfully with clients, members of the public and your team members, prepare reports and successful proposals, perform technical analysis, feasibility studies, make presentations and solve problems.

Finally, you must be someone who we want to work with and who our clients want to work with. We will help you develop your skills, but we also expect you to use your skills to help our junior staff to develop theirs.

Contact phone and/or email: