Sustainable Land Use Framework

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The Sustainable Land Use Framework (Framework) is a holistic policy approach intended to balance the priorities of communities, guide future policymaking, and meet the goals of the County of San Diego (County) Board of Supervisors (Board), the governing body for the unincorporated area.

Why is the Need for the Sustainable Land Use Framework?
In recent years, the State of California (State) has passed various laws related to housing, climate change, development, and sustainability. Many of these laws attempt to address the simultaneous housing and climate crises, with some laws seeking to redirect development in ways that can lessen the associated environmental impacts. For example, the State has been encouraging development within areas with access to transit, services, and amenities with the goal of reducing greenhouse gases.


The Framework can be the more adaptable and holistic lens used for sustainable planning and development to ensure that ALL unincorporated communities (regardless of proximity to transit, services, and amenities) can live, evolve, and thrive in an equitable and sustainable way. The Framework is not intended to duplicate or conflict with the General Plan but rather identify and address any gaps to help the General Plan (the County’s guiding planning document) evolve with new State legislation.


What are the Steps in the Framework Process?
The Framework is being developed through a step-by-step approach to ensure it is responsive to feedback, and comprehensively built through a structured, inclusive, and transparent process. At each step, input is gathered from the community, County departments, stakeholders, and the Board to inform the development of the Framework, ensuring that it reflects the diverse priorities of the unincorporated communities. The key steps and their deliverables are outlined below.

Image of the Framework StepsSteps for the Framework: (1) Sustainability Principles, (2) Focus Areas, Goals, and Objectives, (3) Approached and Mechanisms, (4) Options. Each Step includes updated to the Board and feedback from the community and stakeholders


STEP 1: Sustainability Principles
The Sustainability Principles serve as overarching vision statements, outlining the fundamental values that will support the General Plan and County programs for sustainable land use.

Image of Step 1: Sustainability Principles

Image with descriptions of all five Sustainability PrinciplesStep 1: Sustainability Principles


STEP 2: Focus Areas, Goals, and Objectives
The Sustainability Principles are categorized into specific Focus Areas, which represent key topics within land use planning. Within each Focus Area, broad Goals are established to show the desired outcomes or achievements that can be realized through this process. Objectives are the specific, actionable steps designed to advance the Goals.

Image of Step 2: Focus Areas, Goals, and Objectives

Image of all seven Focus AreasStep 2: Focus Areas, Goals, and Objectives
Focus Areas: Housing, Transportation, Human Health & Equity, Economic Strength, Natural Environment, Hazards, and Climate


STEP 3: Approaches and Mechanisms
Building upon the Goals and Objectives, planning Approaches are identified to show the pathway for achieving the desired outcomes. The Approaches may include policy recommendations, regulatory changes, incentive programs, or community engagement initiatives. Mechanisms are the tools or instruments through which the Approaches are implemented, such as zoning ordinances, development incentives, or infrastructure investments.

Image of Step 3: Approaches and MechanismsStep 3: Approaches and Mechanisms


STEP 4: Framework Options
The final step will involve packaging together Options for Framework implementation, which may include comprehensive revisions to the General Plan to align with the Framework vision, or smaller incremental changes such as the application of the different planning Approaches and Mechanisms for specific geographies and communities.

Image of Step 4: Framework OptionsStep 4: Framework Options




Visit the resources on the right-side of the page to learn more about the Framework. Sign up to receive updates and stay involved in the process by subscribing here!



The Sustainable Land Use Framework (Framework) is a holistic policy approach intended to balance the priorities of communities, guide future policymaking, and meet the goals of the County of San Diego (County) Board of Supervisors (Board), the governing body for the unincorporated area.

Why is the Need for the Sustainable Land Use Framework?
In recent years, the State of California (State) has passed various laws related to housing, climate change, development, and sustainability. Many of these laws attempt to address the simultaneous housing and climate crises, with some laws seeking to redirect development in ways that can lessen the associated environmental impacts. For example, the State has been encouraging development within areas with access to transit, services, and amenities with the goal of reducing greenhouse gases.


The Framework can be the more adaptable and holistic lens used for sustainable planning and development to ensure that ALL unincorporated communities (regardless of proximity to transit, services, and amenities) can live, evolve, and thrive in an equitable and sustainable way. The Framework is not intended to duplicate or conflict with the General Plan but rather identify and address any gaps to help the General Plan (the County’s guiding planning document) evolve with new State legislation.


What are the Steps in the Framework Process?
The Framework is being developed through a step-by-step approach to ensure it is responsive to feedback, and comprehensively built through a structured, inclusive, and transparent process. At each step, input is gathered from the community, County departments, stakeholders, and the Board to inform the development of the Framework, ensuring that it reflects the diverse priorities of the unincorporated communities. The key steps and their deliverables are outlined below.

Image of the Framework StepsSteps for the Framework: (1) Sustainability Principles, (2) Focus Areas, Goals, and Objectives, (3) Approached and Mechanisms, (4) Options. Each Step includes updated to the Board and feedback from the community and stakeholders


STEP 1: Sustainability Principles
The Sustainability Principles serve as overarching vision statements, outlining the fundamental values that will support the General Plan and County programs for sustainable land use.

Image of Step 1: Sustainability Principles

Image with descriptions of all five Sustainability PrinciplesStep 1: Sustainability Principles


STEP 2: Focus Areas, Goals, and Objectives
The Sustainability Principles are categorized into specific Focus Areas, which represent key topics within land use planning. Within each Focus Area, broad Goals are established to show the desired outcomes or achievements that can be realized through this process. Objectives are the specific, actionable steps designed to advance the Goals.

Image of Step 2: Focus Areas, Goals, and Objectives

Image of all seven Focus AreasStep 2: Focus Areas, Goals, and Objectives
Focus Areas: Housing, Transportation, Human Health & Equity, Economic Strength, Natural Environment, Hazards, and Climate


STEP 3: Approaches and Mechanisms
Building upon the Goals and Objectives, planning Approaches are identified to show the pathway for achieving the desired outcomes. The Approaches may include policy recommendations, regulatory changes, incentive programs, or community engagement initiatives. Mechanisms are the tools or instruments through which the Approaches are implemented, such as zoning ordinances, development incentives, or infrastructure investments.

Image of Step 3: Approaches and MechanismsStep 3: Approaches and Mechanisms


STEP 4: Framework Options
The final step will involve packaging together Options for Framework implementation, which may include comprehensive revisions to the General Plan to align with the Framework vision, or smaller incremental changes such as the application of the different planning Approaches and Mechanisms for specific geographies and communities.

Image of Step 4: Framework OptionsStep 4: Framework Options




Visit the resources on the right-side of the page to learn more about the Framework. Sign up to receive updates and stay involved in the process by subscribing here!


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Page last updated: 12 Jun 2024, 03:38 PM