2024 Comprehensive Plan Update

Want to learn more about the Comprehensive Plan Update? Visit the city's new StoryMap! 

Are you just learning about the role of the Comprehensive Plan in Lake Stevens and want to know why it's being updated and where projected growth may occur over the next 20 years? 

Why is the city updating the Comprehensive Plan?

The City of Lake Stevens is currently undertaking a periodic update to its Comprehensive Plan, the city's primary policy document for guiding long-term growth and development. The city's periodic update must be adopted by December 31, 2024 and address projected population and employment growth and housing needs through the year 2044. The update will build upon the analysis, goals and policies that are included in the current comprehensive plan (amended annually through the docketing process), with the last major update occurring in 2015. Community input will also be integral to the development plan and is a cornerstone of the comprehensive planning process outlined in the Growth Management Act (GMA). 

The plan must be consistent with the GMA, PSRC Vision 2050, and Snohomish County countywide planning policies. MRSC provides a good overview of the periodic update process, and additional information and background documents can be found on the Department of Commerce and PSRC Passport to 2044 websites. 

Between 2020 and 2044, the city is projected to add approximately:
  • 10,000 new residents (accounting for the 2021 SE Interlocal Annexation), an almost 25% increase.
  • 3,200 new jobs, a 55% increase.
  • 5,000 new housing units to meet its housing needs, a 35% increase.

          How Comp Plans fit into Regional/State Planning Framework                                                      (Source: Snohomish County)

CPP Image

Project Background Documents

As part of the Comprehensive Plan Update, the City and its consultant team have prepared background documents that will help guide community engagement and policy development work. These include:
  • The Public Participation Plan, which identifies community stakeholders and includes different strategies and events for engaging the public in the Comprehensive Plan update process. 
  • A brochure and one-page summary highlighting the main topic areas and public engagement opportunities for the Comp Plan Update
  • An Audit and Gaps Analysis of the current comprehensive plan, which analyzes the 2015-2035 plan and identifies needed additions and changes to meet current statutory requirements.  
  • Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) sheets for the Housing Element and Land Use Element, which include text and figures such as the chart to the right showing the city's future housing needs. 
Housing Needs

Recent Planning Efforts Informing the Update

The Comprehensive Plan Update does not exist in a vacuum; it will build upon previous work by the City and its partner agencies over the past decade. These include:
  • The 2015-2035 Comprehensive Plan, which has seen minor text and map amendments via the city's annual docketing process.
  • The Lake Stevens Housing Action Plan (HAP), which was adopted by the City Council in June 2023 and includes policies, action and strategies to help meet the city's housing needs across a variety of different income levels and housing types, as required by House Bill 1220 and identified in the 2023 Housing Characteristics and Needs (HO-5) Report for Snohomish County. As shown in the image above, the city has demonstrated housing needs across nearly all income levels, as well as needs for emergency and supportive housing.
  • The Lake Stevens Industrial Center (LSIC) Analysis Report, which assesses and evaluates infrastructure and environmental constraints (see image to right), potential land uses, and capital improvement needs within the industrial area in the northeast corner of the city that will help the city meets its future employment targets. Additional background documents can be found on the city's subarea planning website.
  • The Lake Stevens Climate Sustainability Plan, which was adopted by the City Council in June 2023 and serves as a framework and roadmap to manage current and future carbon emissions and prepare residents for future climate impacts. Per HB 1181, the city must integrate climate mitigation and resilience policies into its comprehensive plan by 2029.
  • Between 2012 and 2018, the city adopted subarea plans for Lake Stevens Center (Frontier Village and surrounding area), the 20th St SE Corridor, and Downtown Lake Stevens. These areas are envisioned to accommodate much of the city's projected population and employment growth over the next 20 years.
  • The city's Shoreline Master Program (SMP) regulates uses and development along Lake Stevens and other waters of the state - Stich Lake, Catherine Creek, and Little Pilchuck Creek - as well as areas within 200 feet of the ordinary high-water mark OHWM). in 2023, the city created a User Guide to help simplify the shoreline development process.
LSIC Environmental Constraints

Have questions/comments or want to sign up for project updates?

Email dlevitan@lakestevenswa.gov. 

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