Comprehensive Plan

What is a Comprehensive Plan?
A Comprehensive Plan is a long-range plan or “guidebook” for a community’s growth, development and redevelopment. It is a vision for the future that plans for a twenty year time period, based on local conditions, values and aspirations. It is called comprehensive because it coordinates the efforts of many different aspects of a community, such as land use, transportation, and economic development.
One of the most important purposes of a Comprehensive Plan is to formally identify the elements that create a thriving, attractive community: one that offers viable options to its residents regarding where and how they want to live, work, and play. For this reason, public input is essential to developing a successful plan. The plan will gather ideas from the Lafayette community, while the process will provide a forum for residents to talk and work together to solve shared problems.
Frequently Asked Questions

What does the plan include?

  • Background data and trends
  • Our community’s vision for Lafayette’s future including roads, utilities, housing, parks and open space, education, and other community facilities
  • Goals, objectives, and policies for future development and reinvestment, community character, housing and neighborhoods, historic and cultural resources, economic development, transportation and mobility, utilities, community facilities and services, recreation and open space, and resource conservation and hazard mitigation
  • Maps and graphics that help visualize future growth, redevelopment, and preservation
  • An action plan (or implementation plan) to guide the realization of the plan
  • Ways to monitor and evaluate the progress of the plan

Is the plan a legal document?

No. However, it has legal implications because of references to comprehensive plans (or master plans) in State Law. The Plan is a planning and policy document that will guide the decision making process of the Planning Commission, the Administration and the City-Parish Council.
The Plan can be implemented in many ways. It will provide a set of tools (e.g. ordinances, best practices, and a process for monitoring the plan’s recommendations). The Plan will also be used during the local government budgeting process, as well as leveraged and coordinated with other government organizations and private entities, as a guide for their decision making. These tools and others will be considered during the development of the Plan.

What is the state enabling legislation that requires communities to have a comprehensive or master plan?

The Master Plan is referenced in state law as follows:
Louisiana Revised Statues, Title 33 Municipalities and Parishes, Part IV. Physical Development of Parishes and Municipalities, Subpart A. Planning Commissions, § 106.General Powers and Duties A.(1) and (2), B.(1) and (2).
§106. General Powers and Duties A.(1)
A parish planning commission shall make and adopt a master plan for the physical development of the unincorporated territory of a parish.
§106. General Powers and Duties A.(2)
A municipal planning commission shall make and adopt a master plan for the physical development of the incorporated territory of the municipality.
§ 106. General Powers and Duties B.(1)
Any such plan shall provide a general description or depiction of existing roads, streets, highways, and publicly controlled corridors, along with a general description or depiction of other public property within the jurisdiction that is subject to the authority of the commission.
§ 106. General Powers and Duties B.(2)
Any such plan, with the accompanying maps, plats, charts, and descriptive matter may include a commission’s recommendations for the development of the parish or municipality, as the case may be, including, among other things, the general location, character, and extent of railroads, highways, streets, viaducts, subways, bus, street car and other transportation routes, bridges, waterways, lakes, water fronts, boulevards, parkways, playgrounds, squares, parks, aviation fields, and other public ways, grounds, and open spaces; the general location of public buildings, schools, and other public property; the general character, extent and layout of public housing and of the replanning of blighted districts and slum areas; the general location and extent of public utilities and terminals, whether publicly or privately owned or operated, for water, light, sanitation, communication, power, transportation, and other purposes; and the removal, relocation, widening narrowing, vacating, abandonment, change of use, or extension of any of the foregoing ways, grounds, open spaces, buildings, property, utilities, or terminals.