The Planning Department is responsible for performing two critical functions for the community.
The first function is long-range planning. The Planning staff engages with residents and businesses, visitors and community organizations, and all levels of government to prepare plans to guide the future development of the community. The Department is currently in the second draft of preparing the Comprehensive Plan. This plan will be “comprehensive” because it will identify the preferred land uses of all properties within the Village. It is also comprehensive because it seeks to identify and integrate many issues that are important to the community. These issues are land use and natural resources conservation, utility and roadway improvements, community services, natural hazards, economic development and recreation, and community design. Each of these issues is addressed in a series of goals, policies, and objectives. The Comprehensive Plan seeks to improve the quality of life and experience for everyone, not only a few special interests, property owners, or developers. The planning staff is working on other long range plans such as the Community Wildfire Protection Plan and Master Development Plan for the Kachina Area. The staff looks for creative ways to implement the objectives of the long range plans. Depending on the type and complexity of the project, implementing the long range plans can take the form of grants, public financing, formal partnerships and development agreements, crafting new and updated regulations, and collaboration with community members, businesses, and other organizations and government agencies.
The second main function of the Planning Department is to review and evaluate land development projects according to the goals and policies of the Comprehensive Plan and other applicable plans, such as the Wireless Communications Master Plan or the forthcoming Master Development Plan for the Kachina Area. The Planning staff works with land owners, architects and engineers, homeowner associations, and other regulating agencies to ensure that new development protects and enhances the environment and economy of the community and that any development will not have negative impacts to neighboring properties and the immediate community. Another level of development review is the zoning ordinance and other related ordinances that govern land use and development.
The essence of the Planning Department is public involvement in developing long range plans and in implementing those plans through the development review process.