General Plan Definition and Legal Meaning

On this page, you'll find the legal definition and meaning of General Plan, written in plain English, along with examples of how it is used.

What is General Plan?

(n) General Plan is the overall planning made about an area , land, city, county etc where in the areas are generally established for different purposes, zones and activities.

History and Meaning of General Plan

The General Plan is a legal document or a master plan that defines and guides the development, growth and land use within a city or county. It serves as the basis for all land use decisions and contains the blueprint for future development in a community, including residential, commercial and industrial zoning. The General Plan is created through a process of public hearings, community input and consultation with experts and stakeholders.

The origin of the General Plan dates back to the early 20th century in the United States, where cities started to experience rapid population growth and urbanization. Planners and civic leaders recognized the need for a comprehensive plan that would manage the growth and development of their cities. The first General Plan was adopted by the city of Berkeley, California in 1909, and since then, most cities and counties in the United States have adopted similar planning mechanisms.

Examples of General Plan

  1. The General Plan of Los Angeles contains policies and programs to guide land use, transportation, housing, and environmental sustainability for the city's future development.

  2. In the General Plan of San Francisco, the city establishes its long-term vision, goals, and policies for the physical development of the city, including land use, transportation, housing, and environmental issues.

  3. The General Plan of Santa Clara County outlines policies and procedures relating to land use, environmental protection, noise, and safety standards.

Legal Terms Similar to General Plan

  1. Specific Plan: A more detailed plan that provides a framework for development of a specific area within a city or county.

  2. Zoning Ordinance: A set of laws and regulations that specifies the permitted uses for land and buildings in a particular area.

  3. Development Code: A set of regulations that govern the design, process, and construction of new developments within a city or county.