Growth Management Element


The Growth Management Element includes guiding principles, policies and implementation to ensure municipal services and management operations are coordinated concurrently with anticipated development and consistent with Land Use, Circulation, Housing and other element plans and policies. The Growth Management Element guides and sets parameters under which future development may occur, consistent with the Land Use Element. 

The majority of the City’s growth has been, and is planned to be, within the present City boundary and concentrated within identified Infill Opportunity Areas (see Land Use Element); including the Gateway Area as well as around the downtown area, within existing neighborhood commercial centers, and near Cal Poly Humboldt. Growth is directed to these areas because they have existing urban services and infrastructure.  In addition, infill implements the regional Climate Action Plan and the City’s sea level rise adaptation plan, preserves the natural and open working lands surrounding the City, and provides needed reinvestment in existing developed areas.

The Growth Management Element provides guidelines for analyzing future boundary changes, development project proposals and mitigation. The City can apply Growth Management guidance to prioritize public facilities and services access that enhances quality of life, including transportation, housing, parks, open space, trails, greenbelts, recreational facilities (including senior and youth centers), community centers, grocery stores, health care facilities, child care centers, libraries, and cultural centers. Ensuring sufficient community facilities and support services is important to maintain social equity.

 The Growth Management Element is consistent with state planning priorities (California Government Code section 65041.1) to promote equity, strengthen the economy, protect the environment, and promote public health and safety, as summarized below:

  1. To promote infill development and equity by rehabilitating, maintaining, and improving existing infrastructure that supports infill development and appropriate reuse and redevelopment of previously developed, underutilized land presently served by transit, streets, water, sewer, and other essential services, particularly in underserved areas, and to preserving cultural and historic resources.
  2. To protect environmental and agricultural resources by protecting, preserving, and enhancing natural resources, including working landscapes such as farm, range, and forest lands, natural lands such as wetlands, watersheds, wildlife habitats, and other wildlands, recreation lands such as parks, trails, greenbelts, and other open space, and landscapes with locally unique features and areas deserving special protection.
  3. To encourage efficient development patterns by ensuring that any infrastructure associated with development, other than infill development, supports new development that does all of the following:  uses land efficiently; is built adjacent to existing developed areas to the extent consistent with the priorities specified pursuant to subdivision; is located in an area appropriately planned for growth; is served by adequate transportation and other essential utilities and services; and minimizes ongoing costs to taxpayers.


Available Documents

Planning Commission Reccommendation July 11, 2023:
Growth Management Element (clean)

updated GME clean Opens in new windowDownload version HERE.

Planning Commission Reccommendation July 11, 2023:
Growth Management Element (tracked changes)

updated GME TC Opens in new windowDownload version HERE.