General Development Plan
History of Comprehensive Planning
As a charter county, Anne Arundel County is granted planning and zoning powers by Article 25A of the Annotated Code of Maryland. Article 66B (Land Use) of the State Code also includes some requirements for comprehensive planning that apply to charter counties. The Anne Arundel County Code designates the Office of Planning and Zoning to prepare and periodically update a comprehensive plan to guide growth and development.
Anne Arundel County has had a General Development Plan since 1968, with updates in 1978, 1986, 1997, and most recently, 2009. Historically, the County has revised or amended the GDP to reflect demographic, economic, social, and environmental changes that have occurred. The 1997 General Development Plan also incorporated policy recommendations that comply with Maryland's Economic Growth, Resource Protection and Planning Act of 1992 and related "Smart Growth" legislation.
2009 General Development Plan
The 2009 General Development Plan was approved by the County Council under Bill No. 64-09 on October 19, 2009.
The 2009 General Development Plan establishes a vision for the future based on four core principles: balanced growth and sustainability, community preservation and enhancement, environmental stewardship, and quality public services. The 2009 GDP includes a Land Use Plan to guide future development patterns, and a Transportation Plan with recommendations for improving the County’s road network, public transit options, and travel demand management. The GDP also proposes a Priority Preservation Area in accordance with new State requirements for agricultural preservation. In addition, the GDP includes a Water Resources Plan that assesses land use impacts on local water resources and lays out strategies to protect those resources. Finally, the GDP addresses the need for concurrency management to ensure that public facilities and services will be available to serve future needs.