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Buckeye 2040 General Plan

2019 Best General Plan Award (Jurisdictions Larger than 50,000)

American Planning Association, Arizona Chapter

The Imagine Buckeye General Plan 2040 was a comprehensive update to the City of Buckeye’s previous general plan, as mandated by ARS §9-461.05. Buckeye included 17 elements or topic areas required by the state for communities with populations of more than 50,000 and five optional elements. These elements were economic development, education, urban design, healthy communities, and arts and culture. The addition of optional topics was based on public input obtained leading up to the plan and during the planning process, which highlighted these areas as critical to quality of life in Buckeye.

Through eye-catching, easy-to-identify branding, a project website, and a comprehensive public engagement approach, the community was highly aware of the project and public participation was significant.  Stakeholder and focus group interviews, commission and council workshops, tabletop exercises, and public vision and scenario workshops resulted in thousands of comments and clear direction from the community on goals, vision, and policies.

The plan’s 22 elements were organized into “themes” based on common characteristics: growth, services, and stewardship. The themes, along with an innovative goals and policies chart cross-referencing all topics made the plan clear, easy-to-use, and easy to update as the community matures.

The plan also featured an innovative Future Land Use Map that defines six (6) unique activity centers that were envisioned and themed by the community. The activity centers are opportunities for more refined specific area planning and will become unique center points in the city.

Lastly, the Implementation Element provided Buckeye with a playbook for implementing the general plan — so it is not another planning document that just sits on a shelf.