What is the Comprehensive Plan?

    Albemarle County is updating its Comprehensive Plan (or 'Comp Plan'), which is a guiding document for growth, development, and investment in the county. The Plan has recommendations for how and where the county should grow; supporting local businesses and industry, protecting and enhancing natural resources, providing transportation options for walking, biking, taking transit, and driving, and allowing and encouraging a variety of housing types. The Comprehensive Plan is used to guide decisions on public infrastructure and funding, plans and programs, and review of some development applications.

    Review the current Comprehensive Plan, adopted in 2015

    Why the name 'Albemarle County 2044 (AC44)'?

    The process to update the Comp Plan kicked off in early 2022 and is anticipated to be completed by the fall of 2024. When adopted, the Comp Plan will be in effect from 2024 to 2044 with periodic updates, in response to changing conditions and trends in the county. 'AC44' is an abbreviation of the full project name.

    Why is the Comprehensive Plan being updated now?

    Updates to the Comp Plan offer the opportunity to integrate new plans and policies, and to plan for future growth and demands for infrastructure and services. Since the latest Comprehensive Plan update in 2015, Albemarle County has grown and changed. Several new plans and policies have been adopted by the County (including the Climate Action Plan(External link) and the Affordable Housing Policy(External link)). Additionally, the Board of Supervisors affirmed Albemarle County's commitment to equity and inclusion with the Resolution in Support of an Equitable and Inclusive Community(External link).

    Since 2015, approximately 4,000 new dwelling units have been built and our community’s median household income and median home values continue to rise. This growth, however, has not been experienced evenly across the county, with quality-of-life outcomes that differ depending on where you live in Albemarle County. Read the Albemarle County Equity Profile to learn more.

    What are the Project Goals?

    There are three project goals for AC44, which directly relate to why the Comp Plan is being updated and help guide the process. The project goals are:

    1. Update plan content to reflect recent County-wide strategic initiatives including climate action, economic development, and multi-modal transportation planning. 
    2. Ensure that equity is integrated into the engagement process and the updated plan content, consistent with the County’s “Community” organizational value. 
    3. Improve Plan usability by articulating clearly prioritized goals, incorporating metrics for tracking progress, and applying a modern, streamlined document design.  

    Who is the project team, and how can I get in touch?

    There are many staff members across the County that are involved in the Comp Plan update. The lead project team members are listed on the right-hand side of this page. To reach out to these team members with questions or feedback on this project, please email ac44@albemarle.org(External link) or call 434-296-5832 ext. 3270.

    What is the Land Use Buildout Analysis?

    The land use buildout analysis (previously referred to as the capacity analysis, and last completed in 2019), is an estimate, using a series of assumptions, of the theoretical maximum number of homes (‘dwelling units’) and square feet of non-residential land uses (such as office, commercial/retail, and industrial) that could be built within the County’s Development Areas.   

    Assumptions are used to identify land within the County’s Development Areas that is vacant or has the potential to redevelop. Land that is significantly restricted (e.g. a property that is entirely within the floodplain) is not included. Once land that could develop or redevelop is identified, additional assumptions are applied to each property based on its future land use designation. Applied across the Development Areas, this analysis results in the theoretical maximum buildout, which may not be achievable due to environmental and economic constraints.  

    Throughout the Comp Plan update, the AC44 project team will continue to refer to the land use buildout analysis as a reference and dataset. More information is available in the Phase 1 Background Report and in the Land Use Topic Report.