Comprehensive Plan
Amending the DC Comprehensive Plan


This amendment cycle will include the creation of new Comprehensive Plan policies and actions to advance the concept of resiliency in the District as it impacts land use and community quality of life. A new Resilience Element will be created and resilience policy will also be integrated into existing Citywide and Area Elements. In addition, the new content developed for the Comp Plan will be aligned with the District’s other resilience-related efforts, including the 100 Resilient Cities Program.  In May 2016, The Rockefeller Foundation announced that DC was one of a group of 37 new cities being accepted into the program. OP is participating in the development of the District’s 100 Resilient Cities Program, which is being led by the Office of the City Administrator (OCA).

Since the last Comprehensive Plan amendment cycle in 2009-2010, the District of Columbia has experienced four Presidentially-declared disasters between 2011 and 2013. The District is vulnerable to flooding from severe storms, storm surge and sea level rise as well as to extreme heat. The disasters caused by these threats can pose serious challenges to the District’s economy and infrastructure—both of which have regional impacts—and community health, safety and quality of life. The District government currently has a number of initiatives underway to address climate change and adaptation. In addition to those efforts as well as expanding its leadership in sustainability through the Sustainable DC initiative, the District recently has engaged in initiatives to introduce the concept and practices of resilience to District agencies, residents and other stakeholders. These initiatives have been intended to supplement traditional emergency preparedness activities, enhance community cohesion and build community capacity to bounce back successfully from emergencies and build stronger, economically stable communities.

To prepare the draft resilience content, OP’s consultant team will conduct a literature review to identify the latest innovative thinking, best practices, and new guidelines on the application of resiliency on a neighborhood and citywide level. The consultant team in collaboration with OP also will conduct interviews with District government and external subject matter experts and leverage work by the District currently underway or completed, such as the DC Department of Health’s Resilient DC initiative and the District’s 2015 National Disaster Resilience Competition Phase 1 application. The draft resilience content will serve as the basis for proposed amendments to be developed by OP that will be included in the larger Comprehensive Plan amendment legislative package.