Skip to page contents
City of Bellingham, WA
Contact Us Site Map
You are here: Home) ServicesCommunity Planning  )  Comprehensive Plan  )  2016 Comprehensive Plan Update

2016 Comprehensive Plan Update

The City of Bellingham is in the process of updating its 2006 Comprehensive Plan. The new plan will provide a 20-year roadmap for Bellingham's growth and development. The update process provides the City with the opportunity to evaluate and reconsider local needs, update the population and employment growth forecasts and other information in the plan, and address changes in state law. The new plan will build on the visions, goals and policies in the existing Comprehensive Plan, incorporating updated and consolidated language where necessary. On or before June 30, 2016, the City is required to complete the update to ensure compliance with the Growth Management Act (GMA).

Public Comments received

Planning Commission Meeting Materials

December 4, 2014 - Materials for the public hearing can be found at, including the 12/04/14 Presentation to the Planning Commission on High-Level Growth Alternatives.

Comprehensive Plan Update Survey

As part of the public input process for the Comprehensive Plan update, the city asked the community where an additional 36,000 people should live and work over the next 20 years in an online survey from 9/15 - 10/20. The survey received 1202 total responses from neighborhoods throughout Bellingham.

The survey clearly shows respondents value Bellingham's vast recreational opportunities, sense of place, beautiful natural environment and quality of life. Respondents also indicated the need for improvement in the areas of planning / land uses, transportation and crime / vagrancy.  

Regarding growth and development, 75% of respondents agreed with the statement: "Encourage more infill development", while 52% disagreed with the statement: "Expand the boundaries of the Urban Growth Area to include more land that is suitable for future development". These results indicate a preference among respondents for walkable, mixed-use neighborhoods within the existing city limits.

These results will help shape the growth alternatives and goals and polices in the updated Comprehensive Plan.


Comments should be sent to the Planning Department - 210 Lottie St., Bellingham, WA 98225
Attn: Greg Aucutt, Assistant Director
 or to

To be notified of up-coming meetings and progress updates, send an email to:


Top of Page ^ Top of page