Helpful Hints

Guidance on Drafting and Proposing New Policy Language

These are guidelines for drafting your own policy for your Neighborhood Plan. We also suggest reading the policies of neighborhoods to get ideas for your own.

Examples for Revised Policies

Focus: Character and scale. Modify the policy language to focus on maintaining compatibility with or complementing the character and scale of single-family housing areas, rather than calling for preservation of single-family zoning.

Focus: Location and development pattern. Modify the policy language to describe the preferred general pattern for land use or urban form. This can include identification of certain areas that are relatively more appropriate for certain kinds of development.

Focus: Housing choices. Modify the policy language to emphasize housing choices or opportunities, such as housing for families or ADA accessible units.

Policy Language to Avoid

Direct references to specific zones. New policies should avoid references to all specific zoning designations in a neighborhood plan policy. General discussion of housing types, land uses, scale, and character effectively communicate a neighborhood’s vision.  

Protection. The Comprehensive Plan’s goals and policies focus on shaping and guiding change for the future. Policies that emphasize protecting or preserving existing conditions limit our ability to reach these goals.

Superiority of single-family housing or zoning. Policies that connote the superiority of single-family housing compared to other types of housing should be avoided. Terms calling for maintaining qualities such as “integrity” of single-family areas should be avoided.

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