What is a general plan?
California requires local government bodies to create a general plan outlining long-term planning goals and tactics.
What entities create general plans?
Every California city and county must create a general plan.
How often are general plans updated?
Typically, local governments must update their general plans every 10 to 15 years. In practice, cities and counties don’t always update their plans within the specified time frame, and the California Office of Planning and Research may grant extensions. Local governments must give a yearly progress report to the state on the housing element of their plans.
The Plan for the Future Bill would require every California city and county to update the circulation element of its general plan by June 30, 2024, to include a “balanced, multi-modal network” that facilitates active transportation.
How long do cities have to implement a general plan?
The OPR website calls general plans a “blueprint” for the future. In many cases, general plans don’t dictate specific future projects but outline a community’s priorities and goals, which will guide future planning.
The Plan for the Future Bill adds teeth to the circulation element of general plans by requiring that cities begin construction of the Complete Streets envisioned in their revised plans within two years.