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DC Comp Plan Reaches Key Milestone (Open Call process, March 24)

Monday, March 20, 2017

Comprehensive Plan Reaches Key Milestone

District Begins Accepting Formal Amendment Proposals

(WASHINGTON, DC) – Over the past year, the DC Office of Planning has led an array of activities to engage residents in [PLAN]DC, a citywide initiative to amend the District’s Comprehensive Plan. Unprecedented public outreach has ranged from expert panels and industry roundtables in the community to social events, temporary design projects, and town hall meetings.

Now this week, on March 24, Mayor Muriel Bowser, the DC Office of Planning (OP), and the Office of the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development (DMPED) will launch an “Open Call” period, through May 26, 2017, and give all stakeholders an opportunity to formally propose Comprehensive Plan amendments.

The Comprehensive Plan is the 20-year plan the District government uses to guide future development within Washington, D.C. It contains the maps and policies that influence the neighborhoods where people live, work, shop, and play, as well as the investments the city makes in its services and infrastructure. Most importantly it is the primary tool that helps the District to manage change in a way that embraces progress while protecting the qualities that make DC a special place.

“As Washington, DC, continues to develop as a model for inclusive prosperity, my Administration is committed to ensuring that residents have the opportunity to shape our city’s future,” said Mayor Muriel Bowser. “Together, we will answer our growth challenges and turn them into positive opportunities for residents and businesses across all eight wards.”

The Comprehensive Plan was initially adopted in 2006 and was last amended in 2011. Much has changed since that time, including a population increase of over 75,000. Having an up-to-date Comprehensive Plan is critical to achieving the long-term success of the District and realizing our collective vision for an inclusive city.

The result of the current [PLAN]DC effort is not a new Plan, but a set of amendments to the existing Comprehensive Plan that will be submitted as legislation for DC Council approval in early 2018.

“The DC Office of Planning has focused its efforts over the past year hearing from residents and stakeholders in advance of the Open Call,” said OP Director Eric D. Shaw. “We are managing the Open Call in a transparent manner, and providing the public with the resources and in person assistance to author substantive amendments. Amending the plan ensures that the District has current and clear policies that guide development in a responsible, inclusive and resilient manner.”

Stakeholders interested in making an amendment proposal can find a host of useful materials on the [PLAN]DC website, including:

  • an Amendment Submission Form;
  • a “Roadmap” of planning references;
  • a set of Frequently Asked Questions;
  • an Engagement Calendar; and
  • an Evaluation Framework, which OP will use to screen amendment proposals

During the Open Call period, OP will hold a series of 15 technical assistance workshops (called Office Hours) in locations across the city, where participants will be able to ask questions and receive support in preparing proposed amendments. As spring unfolds, OP will also post additional support materials on the website and host additional events continuing and deepening the dialogue around the District’s development.

Please visit to learn more about the Comprehensive Plan amendment process and to sign up for project alerts.


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