General Plan Now Available for Public Review

The City of Albany has released its Draft 2035 General Plan for public review. The General Plan is a state-mandated document that includes the maps and policies that will guide Albany’s growth for the next 20 years. A Draft Environmental Impact Report (DEIR) has been prepared to evaluate the potential environmental impacts that could occur as the new Plan is implemented. The Albany Planning and Zoning Commission and Albany City Council will hold public hearings on the Draft Plan and DEIR beginning in January 2016.

The Draft General Plan is the product of a 2-1/2 year process effort involving more than 20 study sessions of the Planning and Zoning Commission, and numerous meetings with other City Commissions, the City Council, and community members. The Plan includes chapters addressing land use, transportation, parks and open space, conservation and sustainability, environmental hazards, community services and facilities, and the waterfront. A separate part of the General Plan addresses housing; that portion was adopted in February 2015 to meet State requirements.

This is the first comprehensive update of the City’s General Plan since 1992. The new General Plan carries forward many of the policies now in place, including policies for the Albany waterfront. The Plan incorporates established policies from the city’s more recent plans, including its Climate Action Plan and its Active Transportation Plan.

The General Plan presents housing and employment projections for Albany for the next 20 years. According to the Plan, Albany could add as many as 815 housing units and 1,000 jobs by 2035. Most of this development would take place through “infill” projects along San Pablo Avenue, including buildings with new housing above ground floor commercial uses. The DEIR evaluates the effects of this growth on traffic, air and water quality, wildlife, City services, aesthetics, and other environmental factors. The Plan advocates for more sustainable growth, green construction, new pedestrian and bicycle paths, and improvements to City parks, schools, and civic buildings.

Click here to review the General Plan and DEIR.  Column 1 includes the existing (1992) Plan, Column 2 includes the new Draft Plan, and Column 3 includes the Draft EIR.  Copies of these documents are also available for review at City Hall and the Albany Public Library. The City invites public comment on both documents through January 25, 2016 and has scheduled a public hearing on the Plan and DEIR for January 13, 2016. Hearings to adopt the Plan will take place after the comment period has closed.