Project Overview

What is a General Plan?

The General Plan defines the community vision for what our City will look like in 2040, and a roadmap to get us there! The State of California requires each city to adopt a comprehensive, long-term General Plan for the physical development of a community and provides a list of topics that must be addressed. Local decision makers use the goals and policies of a General Plan to make decisions regarding land use, housing, mobility, infrastructure, open spaces, and recreation.

Why Update the General Plan?

This project provides the first opportunity to comprehensively update Wildomar’s General Plan  since the City was incorporated  in 2008. As the first City-specific update of the General Plan, there are important challenges, opportunities, and emerging trends that need to be addressed to enable the Plan to be an effective tool in guiding and ensuring that the future conforms to the visions and aspirations of Wildomar’s residents. The population has grown; lands have been developed, others have been conserved; and the composition, needs, and visions of Wildomar’s residents have evolved. Broader national and global changes also affect the City—the economy has fluctuated, housing costs have escalated, traffic has worsened, our climate is warming, and technological advances are changing how we live and do business. The State has also enacted legislation that more aggressively directs cities to address these and other changes. It’s time for a community conversation about how we grow and where we’ll go!

What’s Included in the General Plan?

By statute, the general plan is presented as a collection of “elements,” or topic categories. Wildomar’s updated General Plan will contain the following chapters:

  • Land Use and Design
  • Economic Development
  • Housing
  • Circulation and Mobility
  • Recreation and Community Services
  • Open Space and Conservation
  • Noise
  • Safety

Who will use the General Plan?

  • City Council and Planning Commission use the goals and policies of the General Plan as a basis upon which to make both long-term and short-term decisions, determine long-term objectives, generate and evaluate budgets, plan capital improvements, and prioritize tasks.
  • City staff references the General Plan when considering development applications, capital improvements, service programming, and departmental budgeting.
  • Individual residents, existing and prospective business owners, and the development community seek guidance for understanding and commitments for what will be preserved, enhanced, and changed in the near and long terms.
  • Other local and regional agencies refer to the General Plan when projecting future needs and services. The General Plan is truly the City’s collective guide to the future.

How will the General Plan be Implemented?

General Plan implementation consists of shorter-term actions and programs to carry out longer-term General Plan goals and policies. Implementation actions in the General Plan can also be tied to the City’s annual Strategic Plan priorities.


General Plan Topics

The updated General Plan will address all State requirements and will cover the following topics:

How do the General Plan Elements Work Together?

  • In order for General Plans to function effectively, the elements must be consistent with one another. This means the goals, policies, and implementation measures cannot conflict with one another and no particular element should be given priority over another. For example, if the Land Use element identifies an increase in development potential, the Circulation element must provide a plan to accommodate increased traffic associated with this growth. This ensures that the goals and policies of each element complement rather than hinder one another.


  • To ensure “internal consistency” throughout the General Plan, the California Office of Planning and Research mandates that: “In general terms, an action, program or project is consistent with the General Plan if, considering all its aspects, it will further the objectives and policies of the General Plan and not obstruct their attainment.”


  • The City utilizes several other planning tools such as a zoning ordinance, subdivision ordinance, and specific plans, which must be consistent with the provisions of the General Plan. If they are determined to be inconsistent, they cannot be approved.


  • The General Plan should also be reviewed by other departments to determine if efforts such as public works projects or public land acquisition or sale are consistent with the goals and policies identified in the General Plan.


  • State law enables local jurisdictions to determine the structure of their General Plans, as long as all content of the mandated elements are fully addressed. The elements described above represents some reorganization of content for the Envision Wildomar 2040 plan and may be further modified during the planning process.