What is a Comprehensive Plan?

2045 Comprehensive Plan cover page Opens in new window

Since 1980, every local government in Virginia has been required to have a Comprehensive Plan. The purpose of the Comprehensive Plan is to articulate the long range vision, goals and strategies that will steer future growth and development. The Comprehensive Plan guides future land use decisions and capital investments by landowners, developers, businesses, citizens, and County officials. By considering the types and locations of development and services needed or desired for the future, decision makers are better able to evaluate individual proposals in the context of long-term goals.

James City County's Comprehensive Plan, Our County, Our Shared Future - James City County 2045 Comprehensive Plan, was adopted October 26, 2021. More information about the planning process to update the plan is available at the Engage 2045 Update tab, as is information about the Teams who helped lead the process. The adopted document is available at The Plan tab. 

The Comprehensive Plan is the broadest of many planning tools used by James City County. It is a long-range document that identifies policies and actions for the next 25 years. By comparison the County’s Strategic Plan guides the implementation of shorter-term operation initiatives and capital investments that are identified in the Comprehensive Plan and other long-range community plans. It helps decision makers set departmental work plan priorities, annual budgets, and capital improvement plans to achieve the vision of the comprehensive plan. 

Implementation Wheel