Historic General Plan Updates

Current 2001 General Plan

On November 12, 2019, City Council approved a non-major General Plan amendment, updating the 2001 General Plan to incorporate two new State-mandated elements (Energy and Neighborhood Preservation and Revitalization), along with other necessary changes to update it to existing community conditions and furthermore meet state statute requirements. This update was intended to ensure Scottsdale's General Plan stays compliant with state statutes, and furthermore, serves as Phase 1 of a two-phased General Plan Update process. Phase 2 will include a complete plan update beginning in 2020.

Scottsdale General Plan 2035

2035 Scottsdale General Plan Draft Cover Art

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Task Force Recommended Draft
November 2014

In the fall 2012, based on feedback from the community, City Council directed the Planning Department to provide an inclusive process to create a new General Plan for community consideration. his process began with a Town Hall made up of 100 community members representing various perspectives in Scottsdale, that came together to create the vision and values statements for the General Plan. Following the town hall, Council established a 25-member Task Force to publicly draft a new General Plan for community and Council deliberation. The General Plan Task Force released their draft Scottsdale General Plan 2035 in November 2014, thus disbanding their role as a public body.

Once the Task Force draft plan was released, a series of citywide public outreach events occurred and community comments were collected and presented to the City Council in a work study session. Council directed continued public outreach on the plan and in the fall of 2016, a new "desert rural land use" idea emerged from community members looking to preserve larger lots in northern Scottsdale. Council reviewed and decided not to include the proposed new "desert rural land use" in the General Plan during a public study session in December 2016. Rather, Council directed Planning Staff to retain the 2001 General Plan, and add the newer state- required elements and updates to this plan.

The Character & Culture Chapter establishes policies for the character of the community, as well as, the types and locations of land uses throughout the city. It emphasizes the importance of the diverse character, unique quality of design, varied lifestyle choices, and commitment to the arts. It includes the State-mandated Land Use Element, Future Land Use Map, and General Plan Amendment Criteria. It also includes two elements added by the community—Character & Design; and, Arts, Culture & Creative Community.

The Environment Chapter focuses on Scottsdale’s environmental resources and open spaces—from protecting natural systems and the water supply to creating a green built environment. Goals and policies in this chapter also seek to provide a comprehensive system of open spaces, including further enhancement and protection of the Scottsdale McDowell Sonoran Preserve. Five State-mandated elements are included in this chapter: Open Space, Environmental Planning, Conservation, Water Resources, and Energy.

The Collaboration & Engagement Chapter underscores the importance of community involvement to capture new ways to promote citizen involvement and engage diverse perspectives in decision-making. The community-added Community Involvement Element is included in this chapter.

The Community Well-Being Chapter emphasizes the importance of health, housing, safety, and recreational opportunities in the overall well-being of the community. Three state-mandated elements, Housing, Recreation, and Safety are included in this chapter. In addition, the community added a Healthy Community Element in this chapter.

The Connectivity Chapter contains goals that promote a variety of mobility choices for the movement of people and goods throughout the community. Two State-mandated elements are included in this chapter: Circulation and Bicycling.

The Revitalization Chapter recognizes that the majority of future development in Scottsdale will consist of revitalization, redevelopment, and infill projects. The goals and policies in the Revitalization Chapter focus on preserving the unique qualities and character of Scottsdale’s neighborhoods, addressing the fiscal impacts of development, guiding the locations for concentrated growth and reinvestment in the city, providing public services, and allocating public facilities citywide. Six State-mandated elements are included in this chapter: Neighborhood Preservation & Revitalization; Conservation Rehabilitation & Redevelopment; Growth Areas; Cost of Development; Public Services & Facilities; and, Public Buildings.

The Innovation & Prosperity Chapter seeks to foster the economic sustainability of the community, with focus on tourism, retention and attraction of core industries, and high-quality jobs. The Economic Vitality Element is a community-added element in this chapter.

Establishing the goals and policies of General Plan 2035 is just the first step. The second part of the General Plan is taking action. Initial steps will include a variety of initiatives, such as the creation of Character Area Plans, to achieve specific goals for particular areas of the community; updates to the Zoning Ordinance to oversee the physical development of the city; Capital Improvement projects for the delivery of public services; and a multitude of other short- mid- and long-term programs.

Scottsdale General Plan 2035 Resources

Scottsdale General Plan 2011

2011 Scottsdale General Plan Cover Art

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Scottsdale General Plan 2011
Council Adopted, NOT voter ratified

Between 2009-2011, the Scottsdale General Plan 2011 was created by a Council-directed 19 member community working group made up of one person from each of the city’s boards and commissions, extensive citywide outreach and input, and followed the state statute required public hearing process for adoption. The plan was created as the 10-year state required update to the Council-adopted and voter-ratified City of Scottsdale General Plan 2001. The majority of the 2011 Plan included goals and policies retained from the City of Scottsdale General Plan 2001, as well as the addition of new state statute required elements.

The final plan went before City Council and was adopted on October 25, 2011. Per state statute requirements, the Scottsdale General Plan 2011 was then placed on the March 13, 2012 ballot for possible ratification by Scottsdale voters. The Final Special Election results as reported by Maricopa County for City of Scottsdale Proposition 430 - Scottsdale General Plan 2011 - included a YES vote of 48.02% versus a NO vote of 51.98%. Consequently, the Scottsdale General Plan 2011 was not ratified by voters. Based on the outcome of the March 2012 Special Election, the City of Scottsdale General Plan 2001 remains in effect until such time that a new General Plan is approved by the voters.

Contact Information

City of Scottsdale - General Plan
P: 480-312-3111
Email: generalplan@scottsdaleaz.gov

Erin Perreault, AICP
Long Range Planning Director
P: 480-312-7093
Email: eperreault@ScottsdaleAZ.gov

Adam Yaron
Principal Planner 
P: 480-312-2761
Email: ayaron@ScottsdaleAZ.gov

Taylor Reynolds
Project Coordination Liaison
P: 480-312-7924
Email: treynolds@ScottsdaleAZ.gov

Need Help?

480-312-3111

General City Information/Speak to a Citizen Service Specialist


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