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Whatcom County - Comprehensive Plan Draft Feb 2011

Whatcom County - Comprehensive Plan Draft Feb 2011

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Published by PRMurphy
ISSUES, GOALS, AND POLICIES
Issues for this section were drawn from those identified in the Whatcom County: Next Generations Visioning Process and reinforced during the Whatcom 2031 visioning process. Numerous meetings, surveys/questionnaires and other methods were used to identify what was important to people in Whatcom County.
ISSUES, GOALS, AND POLICIES
Issues for this section were drawn from those identified in the Whatcom County: Next Generations Visioning Process and reinforced during the Whatcom 2031 visioning process. Numerous meetings, surveys/questionnaires and other methods were used to identify what was important to people in Whatcom County.

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Published by: PRMurphy on Feb 21, 2011
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06/16/2011

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Whatcom County Comprehensive PlanFebruary 9, 2011 Proposed Amendments County Council Draft Page 1 of 29
I:\Planning Division\Long Range Planning\LAMIRD\Council Draft\20110208-council-compplandraftinprogress.doc
Chapter Two
LAND USE
 
. . . . .OVERALL LAND USE - INTRODUCTION. . . . .ISSUES, GOALS, AND POLICIES
 Issues for this section were drawn from those identified in
 
the Whatcom County: NextGenerations Visioning Process and reinforced during the Whatcom 2031 visioningprocess. Numerous meetings, surveys/questionnaires and other methods were used toidentify what was important to people in Whatcom County.
Accommodating Growth
 Community Value Statements encourage concentrating growth into urban areas. Thisallows for efficient provision of services and preservation of rural areas as quiet, openspaces where development pressures are not such that extraordinary regulations mustbe imposed. A distinct boundary isneededbetween rural and urban areas, discouragingsprawl, maintaining desired rural lifestyles, and conserving agricultural land.
GOAL 2A: Ensure provision of sufficient land and densities toaccommodate the growth needs of Whatcom County andprotect the qualities that make the county a desirable place tolive.
 Policy 2A-1: Concentrate urban levels of development within designated urbangrowth areas.Policy 2A-2:Drawa distinct boundary between urban and rural uses.Policy 2A-3: Provide a range of land uses which considers locational andmarket factors as well as required quantities of land.Policy 2A-4: Designate land uses that reflect the best use of the land.Policy 2A-5: Provide predictability to property owners in land use designation.Policy 2A-6: Allow appropriate development in existing small self-containedcommunities through the use of the "Rural Community" land usedesignation.Policy 2A-7: Provide sufficient and appropriately located residential,commercial, and industrial lands.
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also
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encouraged
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Where existingdevelopment does not alreadyprohibit it, draw
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Small Town
 
Whatcom County Comprehensive PlanFebruary 9, 2011 Proposed Amendments County Council Draft Page 2 of 29
I:\Planning Division\Long Range Planning\LAMIRD\Council Draft\20110208-council-compplandraftinprogress.doc
Policy 2A-8: Include business/industry parks, tourist/resort areas andallowance for existing crossroads commercialareas within urbangrowth areas or limited areas of more intensive rural development.Policy 2A-9: Retain existing rural and heavy industrial areas in thenorthwestern region of the countywithin urban growth areas orlimited areas of more intensive rural development. Policy 2A-10 Recognize the importance of tourism and its influence on the needfor land for various types of development.Policy 2A-11 Ensure that the development potentia
 
l of contiguous lands incommon ownership is not compromised when urban growthboundariesand/or LAMIRD boundariesare designated.The term common ownership should include lands owned by the same
 
persons or entities and also by affiliated companies with common
 
ownership.This should be accomplished without expanding UGA
 
and/or LAMIRDboundaries beyond that ownership and withoutbridging natural divisions of urban/rural land uses such as roads,rivers, and other natural features.Policy 2A-12 Adoption of residential, industrial and commercial comprehensiveplan or zoning designations in rural areas must comply with thecriteria for “limited areas of more intensive rural development” inthe Growth Management Act (RCW 36.70A.070(5)).
Resort Communities and Master Planned Resorts
 The County's resort areas are important to
 
the economic viability of the County's tourist
 
industryand provide numerous and varied recreational opportunities for county residentsand visitors. Historically important resort areas include Birch Bay, Point Roberts,Semiahmoo, and the Mount Baker winter recreational area.Resort communities provide  recreational opportunities for residentsof the surrounding areas. 
GOAL 2B:
 
Encourage the continued viability of existing resortcommunities and allow the development of new MasterPlanned Resorts in the future.
 Policy 2B-1:
 
Permit through the planned unit development processmaster
 
planned resortsin settings of significant natural amenities within
 
urban growth areas.Policy 2B-2: Newlarge-scaleresort development in rural areas outside ofUGAs and outside established resort areas should only bepermitted as Master Planned Resorts and only when substantiallyin compliance with these policiesand with RCW 36.70A.360.
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areas
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in commercial landsdesignations
Comment [G1]:
Added per COTWvote 1/25/11
Comment [G2]:
Staff suggestion perCOTW discussion 1/25/11
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tourism
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New developments haveexpanded the role of the r
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in
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ing
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and employment
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Support the economicviability of the County's touristindustry by permitting
Comment [G3]:
Staff suggestion perCOTW discussion 1/25/11
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within urban growth areasthrough the planned unit developmentprocess
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,
 
Whatcom County Comprehensive PlanFebruary 9, 2011 Proposed Amendments County Council Draft Page 3 of 29
I:\Planning Division\Long Range Planning\LAMIRD\Council Draft\20110208-council-compplandraftinprogress.doc
Policy 2B-3: Work with property owners in the resort communities to developan understanding of the unique needs of these areas and evaluateland use regulations for their responsiveness to these needs.Policy 2B-4: New resort development and Master Planned Resorts should bedeveloped consistent with the development regulationsestablished for critical areas.Policy 2B-5: No new urban land uses should be allowed in the vicinity ofMaster Planned Resorts, except in areas otherwise designated asurban growth areas under the Comprehens
 
ive Plan.
. . . . .Regions of Whatcom County
 Whatcom County is a large and diverse county. People living in different parts of thecounty have different priorities and understanding of what constitutes rural and urbanlifestyles. It is important to citizens to emphasize these regional differences.
GOAL 2L: Recognize the important regional differences within WhatcomCounty.
 Policy 2L-1: Use the subarea planning process to identify and supportdistinctions among different areas of the county.Policy 2L-2: Retain and periodically update the adopted Subarea Plans(Lummi Island, Cherry Point-Ferndale, Lake Whatcom, UrbanFringe, Lynden-Nooksack Valley, Chuckanut-Lake Samish, BirchBay-Blaine, Foothills, Point Roberts, South Fork Valley, and ElizaIsland). Subarea Plans represent a long history of plandevelopment in Whatcom County and provided the foundation forthe county’s first Growth Management comprehensive planadopted in 1997.a. Utilize a process which ensures consistency between theWhatcom County Comprehensive Plan and subarea plans. Thesubarea plan update process should include the following steps:1) Consistency Analysis. The County should reviewsubarea plans based on the priority order in subsection “b”for gaps, overlaps, or inconsistencies. Topics include, butare not limited to, plan boundaries, growth forecasts, landuses, capital facilities and services, horizon year, and otherappropriate issues.2) Regional and Local Government Coordination. TheCounty should consult and coordinate with cities wherecity-associated UGAs are included in subarea planboundaries.
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PRMurphy added this note
Whatcom County, WA: draft Comprehensive Plan....RIDDLED with ICLEI and Agenda 21. Visioning Process? Etc. Sound familiar?
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