What is a Comprehensive Plan?

The Comprehen-sive Plan is the Town of Bluffton’s land-planning document that provides recommendations for the wise and efficient use of public funds, future growth, development, redevelopment and fiscal impact of the planning elements on property owners.

This is required by South Carolina law as a prerequisite for communities to adopt a zoning ordinance and subdivision and land development regulations.

The Planning Commission must re-evaluate the Comprehensive Plan elements at least every five years and update it every 10 years. The findings are provided in the Comprehensive Plan Audit. The last significant amendments to the plan were completed in 2014.

The Town is undergoing a major evaluation that will be completed within the next two years. Through this, we are reviewing changes in demographics and statistics, receiving input from town boards and commissions, and getting citizen feedback through public meetings, workshops, surveys and various other public outreach methods.

We will be updating our maps and establishing goals and objectives that will guide the community for the next 10 years.

What are the main focus areas or chapters included in a Comprehensive Plan?

  • Population
  • Cultural resources
  • Natural resources
  • Housing
  • Economic development
  • Community facilities
  • Land use
  • Transportation
  • Priority investment

What is included in each focus area?

  • Inventory of existing conditions;
  • Statement of needs and goals; and
  • Implementation strategies with time frames.

What is the Comprehensive Plan used for? What is the purpose?

  • Used to review applications and proposals for rezoning;
  • Annexation requests;
  • Master Plan reviews;
  • Development Plan reviews;
  • Amendments to the Unified Development Ordinance; and
  • As a planning tool for various other applications and proposals.

The Planning Commission will hold public hearings and make a recommendation to Town Council, which will then review the Planning Commission’s recommendation, with two readings (first reading and second reading – public hearing), ultimately approved by Ordinance.

Please keep a watch for future workshops and meeting and provide any comment or feedback you have. We are all in this together to ensure Bluffton remains the best place to live, raise a family, or retire.

Lisa Sulka is the mayor of the Town of Bluffton.