The gist: Alm-LaBar has given notice that she will leave her post as director of Lafayette Consolidated Government's Development and Planning Department, effective June 22, to take a planning position with Southern Lifestyle Development, a Lafayette-based real estate group known for traditional neighborhood developments like River Ranch.
Who is she and why is this a big deal? Alm-LaBar was one of a few holdovers from the administration of Joey Durel. She last served as chief development officer in that administration, a position Robideaux eliminated upon taking office.
In her eight years with LCG, Alm-LaBar spearheaded the development of the Unified Development Code and PlanLafayette, pushing city-parish government toward modernized urban planning. She also led the Evangeline Thruway Redevelopment Team, a committee charged with planning and redevelopment efforts in the neighborhoods inside the future impact zone of the I-49 Connector.
Robideaux's policies Downtown and in the city's urban core arguably reflect Alm-LaBar's influence.
What to watch for: Robideaux’s administration has now lost two experienced and respected directors this spring — Alm-LaBar and [LUS chief Terry Huval] — and three in total, counting the departure of Public Works Director Tom Carroll last year. Replacing Huval and Alm-LaBar will be an important task for Robideaux's administration and will give some indication of his administrative vision.