Comprehensive Planning

The Comprehensive Planning section prepares and updates the City's Comprehensive Plan.

The Comprehensive Plan is implemented by the Land Development Code.

The City also has overlays for certain neighborhoods, known as Special Area Plans. These may be found in Appendix A of the Land Development Code. Four of the City's eight Special Area Plans are summarized below:




S.W. 13th Street Special Area Plan

S.W. 13th Street Special Area Plan - A joint City/County planning effort led to this special corridor plan. The corridor leads from Payne's Prairie and beautiful open vistas at its southern end to the University of Florida at its northern end.

College Park Special Area Plan

College Park Special Area Plan - College Park is a rapidly redeveloping mixed-use neighborhood just north of the University of Florida campus. It contains mid-century and newer housing, and a vibrant retail and commercial corridor along University Avenue.

University Heights Special Area Plan

University Heights Special Area Plan - This traditional neighborhood, between the University of Florida campus and downtown, includes residential and other uses. The plan promotes urban design compatibility while encouraging redevelopment in this area.

Idylwild-Serenola Special Area Plan

Idylwild-Serenola Special Area Plan - This special area plan, generally west of Southwest 13th Street and north of Williston Road, seeks to protect neighborhood character, scenic roads, tree canopy, uplands, wet areas, and sensitive wildlife habitats in this area.

The City also collaborated with Alachua County on Plan East Gainesville:

Plan East Gainesville

Plan East Gainesville - This ambitious plan addresses development and redevelopment, land conservation and transportation needs for East Gainesville - an area of established neighborhoods a short drive from downtown.

There are special environmental overlays with special setbacks and processes, such as

Wellfield Districts  - This district consists of three wellfield protection zones. Businesses in this area must obtain a special use permit certifying that the use will not jeopardize the groundwater wellfield. Hazardous materials, septic tanks, and on-site wells are regulated.

Wetlands

Wetlands - Development must avoid loss of function or degradation of wetland habitat and hydrology as the highest priority. Unavoidable degradation or loss of function must be minimized. Off-site mitigation must be within prescribed areas. A minimum 35-ft. and average 50-ft. buffer is required.

Lakes

Lakes - Developments containing or adjacent to a natural lake must not adversely impact the condition of the lake. Lake buffers are protected. Biven's Arm is a treasured resource along Southwest 13th Street.

Creeks

Creeks - Gainesville is criss-crossed by a remarkable creek system, a natural resource and amenity crossing through many of the City's neighborhoods. Buffers along creeks are protected from development.