The Douglas County Planning Commission, an appointed nine-member citizen board, is responsible for creating and updating the CMP. The responsibility for the Planning Commission to oversee the CMP is actually determined by Colorado Revised State Statutes. The Planning Commission is assisted with the update to the CMP by the public, and with professional guidance from the Douglas County Community Development staff.
The CMP is implemented in many ways. In some instances, the CMP helps to support the creation of new programs such as the Douglas County Housing Partnership, or to help resolve issues that arise over time as the result of growth. The most common method for implementing the CMP is through review of land use applications. Every development proposal is required to demonstrate that the project can generally move forward with the goals and policies of the CMP.
Why update the CMP?
There are numerous reasons for updating the CMP. A CMP is intended to be an evolving visionary document that responds to, and reflects the values of a community over time. The Douglas County community at large has changed significantly since the adoption of the first CMP in 1984. The values, goals, and challenges that the Douglas County community faces today are significantly different from those of five, ten and 20 years ago. For example, since 2001, when the current 2020 CMP was adopted, more than 26,000 new jobs have come to Douglas County. The population of Douglas County has grown by nearly 91,000 people. Light Rail, opening in November, is now a real transit option for Douglas County, and will continue to grow over the next several years; the County’s Open Space program continues to grow; and new programs and services such as the Douglas County Housing Partnership and funding through the Federal Department of Housing and Urban Development with the Community Development Block Grant program that are now realities. Douglas County has changed significantly over the past 25 years, and has emerged as a mature and diverse community. The CMP needs to be updated regularly to continue to reflect the goals and values of the community including residents, business owners and visitors.
Why update the CMP to a 2035 planning horizon?
One of the goals of the CMP is to maintain consistency with the regional planning efforts of the Denver Regional Council of Governments (DRCOG). DRCOG recently completed an update to their long range-plan, Metro Vision. Metro Vision was extended to the 2035 planning horizon. Douglas County has chosen to maintain a similar planning horizon. Many of the issues that will be discussed in this update are current issues, and the decisions that are made for the CMP during this update will affect Douglas County not only in the next few years, but certainly to the years 2020, 2035 and beyond.
Why should I take time to participate in this update? What difference can I make?
As quoted in the current CMP Vision Statement, public input and participation are the only effective means of helping the County make informed decisions. The CMP should embody the goals and values of the community. Without community input and participation in the update, the CMP will not be effective in guiding change. Everyone who lives, works and plays in Douglas County values the County’s unique resources, the quality of life, and the special places of the County. Planning for the County’s future is everyone’s responsibility. It is important to share your experiences, your plans, and your concerns, and to work collaboratively with your neighbors, the Planning Commission, and Douglas County staff in order to ensure that the CMP continues to reflect the larger interests of Douglas County. By participating in this update, you have the opportunity to help find solutions to problems and have a say in what your community looks like.