Comprehensive Plan Fall Public Workshops & Public Comments

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The City Planning Commission hosted four (4) public workshops in October and November 2017 to review draft chapters for the Comprehensive Plan Update. Each evening focused around a different set of topics. Public comment period closed on November 28, 2017. 

Public Workshop Dates

Draft Comprehensive Plan Chapters

Workshop Worksheets and Comments

Additional Public Comments - New! Posted 12/1/2017

More on the Comprehensive Plan Update


Public Workshop Dates:

Date and Time Location Topics/Chapters
Thursday, October 19, 2017 at 6pm Lucy F. Simms Center Education, Workforce Development & Lifelong Learning; Arts, Culture, and Historic Resources; and Community Engagement & Collaboration
Monday, October 23, 2017 at 6pm Thomas Harrison Middle School Environmental Stewardship & Sustainability; Parks & Recreation; and Community Infrastructure, Services, Safety & Health
Monday, October 30, 2017 at 6pm Thomas Harrison Middle School Economic Development & Tourism; and Revitalization
Monday, November 13, 2017 at 6pm Thomas Harrison Middle School Land Use & Development Quality; Neighborhoods & Housing; and Transportation


Draft Comprehensive Plan Chapters

The chapters have been drafted with a combination of inputs from the 2011 Comprehensive Plan, reviews by Comprehensive Plan Advisory Committees, Planning Commission, city staff, and others during the Spring and Summer of 2017. Workshop participants are encouraged to review the draft chapters before the meeting. 


Workshop Worksheets and Comments

The Comprehensive Plan workshops were facilitated by faculty and students from James Madison University's Institute for Constructive Advocacy and Dialogue. Below are comments received from the workshop and blank copies of the worksheets used. Additional comments may be submitted on Be Heard Harrisonburg, by emailing, or writing to the Department of Planning & Community Development, c/o Thanh Dang, City Planner, 409 South Main Street, Harrisonburg, VA 22801. Members of the public are welcome to use the blank worksheets and submit them. 


(PDF All files in PDF format)

Workshop on Ch. 8 Education, Workforce Development & Lifelong Learning; Ch. 9 Arts, Culture, and Historic Resources; and Ch.5 Community Engagement & Collaboration

Goal 2. To coordinate and collaborate with entities such as Rockingham County, Sentara RMH Medical Center, James Madison University, Eastern Mennonite University, faith based organizations, local non-profit organizations, and other community organizations to meet the goals of the Comprehensive Plan. 

Goal 3. To engage all people, businesses, and industries to work collaboratively in planning, developing, and promoting the City as a great place to live and work.

Goal 7. To provide a wide and equitably distributed range of educational opportunities for all. 

Goal 8. To have a wide and equitably distributed range of art, and cultural opportunities for making and enjoying art that reflects our diversity and engages our community members and visitors. 

Goal 9. To create places of distinction that capture the imagination, celebrate the arts, and reflect the rich tapestry of our past and the diversity of today. 

Goal 10. To recognize and promote the value of the City’s diverse historic resources and the many benefits that come from protecting irreplaceable assets that embody Harrisonburg’s history.


Workshop on Ch. 10 Environmental Stewardship & Sustainability; Ch. 11 Parks & Recreation; and Ch. 13 Community Infrastructure, Services, Safety & Health

Goal 11. To preserve and enhance the City’s natural environment for future generations through education and policies that encourage development that is compatible with nature and that builds climate resiliency and social responsibility within the community.

Goal 12. To meet the needs of people by providing comprehensive recreation and self-development opportunities, both physical and mental, by developing and maintaining a safe, welcoming, well-distributed, and accessible parks and recreation system that also supports community well-being, economic sustainability, and environmental sustainability.

Goal 14. To support a diverse city with community facilities, infrastructure, and services, which allow for sustainable growth and are accessible, equitable, efficient, cost-effective and sensitive to the environment.

Goal 15. To enhance the quality of life for the community by protecting their health, safety and welfare through public safety, fire suppression, emergency medical services, prevention and public education.


Workshop on Ch. 14 Economic Development & Tourism; and Ch. 15 Revitalization

Goal 16. To maintain being the economic leader in the Shenandoah Valley by offering opportunities for all people, businesses, and industries that continues to enhance the City’s ability to expand its economic base to provide good employment for all people.

Goal 17. To grow the hospitality and tourism industry by encouraging more visits and longer visits among target markets. 

Goal 18. To enhance and revitalize existing residential and commercial areas.


Workshop on Ch. 6 Land Use & Development Quality; Ch. 7 Neighborhoods & Housing; and Ch. 12 Transportation 

At this workshop, all tables reviewed the Land Use Guide and Street Improvement Plan.

Goal 4. To improve the quality of land use and development patterns.

Goal 5. To strengthen existing neighborhoods and promote the development of new neighborhoods that are quiet, safe, beautiful, walkable, enhance social interaction, and offer a balanced range of housing choices.

Goal 6. To meet the current and future needs of residents for affordable housing. 

Goal 13. To develop and maintain a safe and convenient transportation system serving all modes of travel, including driving, walking, biking, and taking public transportation.


Additional Public Comments - New! Posted 12/1/2017

The public comment period was open from October 9 through November 28, 2017.