Our Future Lancaster About the Comprehensive Plan

Beginning in 2021, the City of Lancaster undertook the process of updating its comprehensive plan, the first such update since 1993. The resulting comprehensive plan, Our Future Lancaster, serves as a foundation for decision-making as it relates to future development, with a focus on community outreach to help understand what is most important to the local community.

Comprehensive planning helps us set and achieve our goals and puts the community’s voice into government. It creates space for community discussion. It also allows the City to receive and allocate funding.

The short answer is you! The City of Lancaster worked with community partners, a Comprehensive Plan Committee (CPC) made up of residents, City staff, and members of the public to assemble the plan. Learn more about the community engagement process that resulted in the final plan.

The comprehensive plan helped identify what’s important to our community (such as  housing, parks, and transportation). It guides our City’s development over the next ten years. The plan also helps leaders make key decisions on the issues that affect residents’ daily lives, as well as prioritize funding and resources.

2020 (Summer/Fall)

Budgeted Funds & Secured Grants, Hired Facilitation Specialist, Recruited 17 residents for Comprehensive Plan Committee (CPC)

2021 (Winter/Spring)

Trained CPC, Issued Request for Proposals (RFP) for Primary Consultant, Selected Primary Consultant with CPC

2021 (Summer-Winter)

Initiated Phase 1 Community Engagement (Values & Priorities), Held 1st Technical Advisory Committee meeting

2022 (Spring/Summer)

Initiated Phase 2 Community Engagement (Land Use & Design), Held 2nd Technical Advisory Committee meeting

2022 (Fall/Winter)

Initiated Phase 3 Community Engagement (Policy Drafting), Held 3rd and Final Technical Advisory Committee meeting, began drafting policies and key maps.

2023 (Winter/Spring)

Completed Initial Drafts of Policies and Maps, Held May 24 policy presentation at Ware Center, and Exceeded 4,000 In-Person Interactions and Nearly 15,000 Total Interactions.

2023 (Summer/Fall)

Initiated Phase 4 Community Engagement (Plan Drafting & Adoption), Released Draft 1 of Plan, Engaged Planning Commission in Comprehensive Plan Review, and Engaged City Council in Plan Adoption.

August 16, 2023

Our Future Lancaster received unanimous endorsement from the Lancaster City Planning Commission.

October 24, 2023

Our Future Lancaster:  A Comprehensive Plan for the City of Lancaster, PA unanimously adopted by City Council.

Comprehensive Plan Committee

The Lancaster Comprehensive Plan Committee (CPC) helped guide the planning process. This group was comprised of 19 diverse community members who were involved in neighborhood organizations, local business, or community service. Under the guidance of community engagement firm Connect the Dots, this committee prepared for their role through trainings on community and regional planning; diversity, equity, and inclusion; and decision making and consensus building.

The committee met monthly to consult with the City on marketing, public engagement, and policy issues from the perspective of a cross section of the community.