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What is a Community Plan?

Metro Nashville-Davidson County’s fourteen Community Plans are future planning documents adopted by the Metropolitan Planning Commission that describe the role each community plays in realizing the overall vision of the County - what residential, commercial, office and open space each community will house for the County.

Each community’s Plan receives an overall update every 5-10 years. All fourteen have been recently updated as part of NashvilleNext, the long-range plan for growth, development and preservation in Nashville and Davidson County through 2040. Community Plans can also be amended as necessary, with input from community members, private investors, local institutions and other Metro agencies. The process for updating community plans is open to the public and includes significant community participation.

Each plan is guided by the Community Character Manual (“CCM”), a countywide document which provides direction, in alignment with NashvilleNext, for zoning and development decisions.

Community Plans are prepared by the Metro Planning Department in cooperation with residents, business owners, institutional representatives and developers.

Subarea map

How are the plans implemented?

The community, the Planning Department, the Metro Planning Commission and Metro Council use each plan as a starting point to discuss and guide public and private investment in the area, including proposed zoning changes, subdivisions, and public facilities (roads, sidewalks, greenways, schools, etc.)

What is the difference between land use policies and zoning?

Land use policies are more general - for example, is a particular area residential or commercial? Zoning is more specific, and is built upon the policy - for example, is a residential area single- or multi-family? Zoning classifications outline how you can legally use your property. Both zoning and land use policy represent professional planning principles applied to Nashville/Davidson County and community members' vision of how they want the city to grow.

How can I be part of this process?

Community members help determine an area's land use policy through the Community Plan update process, and by participating in the process as Plans are amended. Community consensus and support are vitally important - work with your neighbors and community members to reach agreement and share your collective vision.

After the Community Plan Update is approved by the Metro Planning Commission, the land use policy it includes becomes the foundation of zoning and subdivision choices. Planners then refer to that policy as they review development applications and make recommendations to the Planning Commission. After the plan is established, community groups help ensure proper implementation by staying involved in zone changes, subdivision applications and other development coming to the area.