What is a Comprehensive Plan?

A Comprehensive Plan is commonly used in many jurisdictions across the United States as the guiding document for future growth and development of the physical, social, and economic environment of a community. The North Dakota Century Code requires that zoning regulations for a municipality be in compliance with a Comprehensive Plan. Ultimately, it is anticipated the plan will set forth a variety of goals, policies, and recommendations to guide the present and future development of the community. This plan will provide staff with an understanding of the future policy and regulatory changes needed over the next 25 years to align with community existing and anticipated needs. 

Conceptually you might think of a Comprehensive Plan as a roadmap of where the community wants to go in the future. Ordinances like the Cities zoning and subdivision regulations could be considered as the vehicles for how to get to that desired future outcome. 

Elements that will be addressed in the plan development include the following:

  • Bismarck’s Growth History
  • Socio-Economic Profile
  • Land Use and Urban Form (Future Land Use, Existing Neighborhoods, and Downtown)
  • Community Facilities (Schools, Parks, Intergovernmental Cooperation)
  • Transportation
  • Utilities
  • Social (Arts and Culture, Recreation, and Governance and Participation)
  • Natural Resources
  • Natural Hazards
  • Growth Management
  • Economy
  • Housing
  • Health
  • Historic Preservation
  • Public Safety

Show All Answers

1. What is a Comprehensive Plan?
2. Why are we updating the Plan?
3. What is the geographic scope of the plan?
4. Who will be involved?
5. When will the plan be completed?
6. How can I get involved?