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Desert Open Space Systems Plan

Where is the full policy?Pyramid_SonoranDesertDGs

The Guidelines may be viewed at the Planning and Design Library at the Community Design Studio, 7506 E Indian School Road.

What is it?

The Desert Open Space System Plan was a report to City Council from the McDowell Sonoran Preserve Commission/Desert Subcommittee. It consolidates several city plans, policies, and standards into one comprehensive open space plan. The interconnected natural and desert character areas in the plan form a system that provides public access, a variety of recreational opportunities, and linkages between community and regional open space.

McDowell Sonoran Preserve & Parks and Recreation Commissions approval; City Council report - November 1997

Thumbnail_DesertOSWhere does it apply?

Maps in the plan depict components of the system on land north of Doubletree.

Who needs to use it?

City Council, Boards and Commissions, City staff, Property Owners, Developers, and Citizens. The plan continues to serve as a reference for defining desert open space planning concepts.

Why was it developed?

The plan represents the community’s vision for a meaningful desert open space system by consolidating several planning documents into one. It is comprised of several related components that together form an interconnected system. The plan encourages consistency and orderly implementation of components of the system and it serves as a guide for public and private decisions.

Key Points:

  1. Open space is a key element that defines the character of Scottsdale and exemplifies the outdoor oriented lifestyle residents enjoy.
  2. The five components of the interconnected system in the plan are:
    1. McDowell Sonoran Preserve;
    2. Recommended Desert Open Space System Study Area;
    3. Trails System;
    4. Vista Corridors, Desert Greenbelts and Utility Corridors; and
    5. Scenic Corridors and Streetscape.
      (City Council and Scottsdale voters added the Recommended Desert Open Space System Study Area to the planned Preserve Boundary in 1998)
  3. The Plan describes and visually represents the interrelationships among major open space components in a series of maps. A key element of the plan is linkages.
  4. Meaningful desert open space is divided into accessible desert open space, visual desert open space, and desert character open space.
  5. The adopted Scottsdale 2001 General Plan has an Open Space Chapter including an Open Space & Recreation Element and a Preservation & Environmental Planning Element.
  6. Since 1997, Council has approved changes to several of the planning documents that were components of the desert open space system including trails, Scenic Corridors and the General Plan.

References and related documents:


Download printable Desert Open Space Plan policy card (pdf / 241 kb / 1 pg)