Fairfax Forward - Comprehensive Plan Amendment Work Program



Fairfax Forward2013 Work Program Background  What's New Frequently Asked Questions Related Efforts 2015 Evaluation Submit an Idea

Fairfax Forward establishes a new schedule to review the county's Comprehensive Plan: the Area Plans, Policy Plan and Land Use, Transportation and Trails Maps. Review of the Area Plans will occur through Activity Center Planning and Neighborhood Planning studies, based on the classifications of the Concept For Future Development. As adopted on July 9, 2013, the Pilot Comprehensive Plan Amendment Work Program schedules the first three years of activity. The work program recognizes current studies underway and new studies to begin within this timeframe.  The adopted work program is considered pilot, and the process and schedule will be evaluated in two years.

Work Program Criteria: The order and timing of new studies listed on the work program was established through intensive public outreach and applying a set of criteria. The criteria seek to:

    • Address emerging community concerns;
    • Respond to actions by others, such as Federal, State, or adjacent jurisdictions;
    • Advance major policy objectives, such as promoting environmental protection, fostering revitalization of designated areas, supporting economic development, preserving open space, providing affordable housing, or balancing transportation infrastructure and public facilities services with growth and development;
    • Better implement the Concept for Future Development;
    • Reflect implementation of Comprehensive Plan guidance through zoning approvals; and/or
    • Respond to or incorporate research derived from technical planning or transportation studies.

The schedule will ensure that guidance is up-to-date and relevant based on current and future needs.  Study timing also will be influenced by the availability of staff and community resources. 

Map of Areas Listed on Draft Work Program

Fairfax Forward Areas Listed
Map of Areas for Future Study


 Review and Evaluation of Work Program:The review of the work program would occur every two years.  The order to review would be as follows:

  • Staff will draft recommendations and publish the recommendations for public comment on the order of review.
  • After the public comment period closes, public comment will be published and staff recommendations will be finalized.
  • A Planning Commission workshop will be held to review the final staff recommendations and all public comment (with staff response). 
  • The Planning Commission will hold a public hearing and establish the work program.
  • The Planning Commission will seek endorsement by the Board of Supervisors.

In the interim year, a status update of the studies will be provided to the Planning Commission and the Board of Supervisors.  The status update will provide information about the active studies, the anticipated timeline to completion, and the scope of work. 

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Board-authorized Amendments:  Any amendment or study authorized for consideration by the Board of Supervisors outside of the regular review and adoption of the work program will be automatically added to the work program to be conducted at a time established by the Board action. 

Compliance with the Code of Virginia:  The Code of Virginia, Title 15.2 Chapter 22 states that the local planning commission shall review the Comprehensive Plan at least once every five years to determine whether it is advisable to amend the Plan.  The proposed approach will meet this mandate.  The Planning Commission will review the Comprehensive Plan Amendment Work Program every two years.  The review of the work program will be informed by ongoing efforts to monitor the Comprehensive Plan, involving the evaluation of countywide Plan recommendations, planned development potential, and Plan implementation.    Further, Board-authorized amendments will remain an option to review Plan recommendations, throughout the work program schedule.


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