Comprehensive Plan Update

On Tuesday, October 15th, the Mayor and her Office of Planning released proposed amendments to the city’s Comprehensive Plan, the legal framework to city land use policies, priorities and 20-year vision.  I wanted to share two documents that show the proposed changes to the city’s Comprehensive Plan as it relates to Cleveland Park.
The first is the redline markup of the Rock Creek West Element (Ward 3) has a lot of specific edits related to Cleveland Park.  You can read the proposal here: Rock Creek West Element (redline)
A summary of what’s changed in the Rock Creek West Element:

Commercial Areas

  • New focus on deteriorating retail conditions in the area due to expanded competition throughout the city.
  • Calls for supporting the retail-enhancement strategies for the Cleveland Park commercial area along Connecticut Ave.

Growth & Housing

  • De-emphasizes growth-control and introducing a desire to thoughtfully guide growth.
  • Calls for our commercial areas to be pedestrian-focused, promote locally owned businesses and mixed-use development.
  • Strikes the mention that mixed use development near Metro should be discouraged, and now says mixed use near Metro should prioritize affordable and moderate-income housing.
  • Calls for considering public-private partnerships that provide community benefits and support mixed-use development.
  • Promotes new zoning rules for Accessory Dwelling Units to add additional low- and moderate-income housing while being sensitive to existing neighborhoods.
  • Prioritizes increasing affordable and moderate-income housing, especially around Metro stations.

Transportation

  • Removes policy focus on congestion and parking and refocuses on prioritizing multi-modal transportation options, reducing single-occupancy vehicle trips and building out bike lanes as called for in the MoveDC and livability plans.
Future Land Use Map (FLUM)
The FLUM is guiding framework that underpins the city’s zoning.  It is not zoning itself.  Changes in the FLUM can be used to guide Planned Unit Developments (PUD) and can be used to rezone an area through the Zoning Commission.  The Office of Planning proposes to change the FLUM land use categories for the Cleveland Park commercial area along Connecticut Avenue from Low Density Commercial to a mix of Moderate Density Commercial and High Density Residential, the latter being the common land use designation along the corridor.  The full map proposed by the city can be viewed here: Future Land Use Map (proposed)
(top left – current FLUM; bottom left – proposed FLUM; right – legend)

 

The release of these proposals kicks off a public review and comment period where residents can give feedback to the Mayor, the Council and to ANCs.  ANCs have until January 31, 2020 to submit resolutions of their official comments.  The Office of Planning will submit the final amendments as legislation to the Council in March and it is expected to be handled by the end of 2020.

An overview guide to reviewing and commenting on the plan can be found here.  All details and summaries of the Comprehensive Plan Amendments can be found at plandc.dc.gov.
Cleveland Park Smart Growth will be reviewing these proposals and holding a membership meeting on a date TBD to discuss a response and advocacy plan.  If you are interested, please take a moment to join CPSG to stay informed and get involved.

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