Monterey 2031 - General Plan Update

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Help Build A Housing Plan for Monterey!

Monterey 2031 is an important citywide project that involves updates to the Housing, Land Use, and Safety Elements of the City of Monterey General Plan to respond to emerging issues and new State laws. The update will be a collaborative effort between the City and its residents to create a blueprint that will guide Monterey in the years to come. All cities and counties in California are required by law to have a general plan. Like other communities in the Monterey Bay Area, the City is required to update the Housing Element of the General Plan by December 15, 2023 to address demographic trends, market conditions, and new State laws. Amid the ongoing housing shortage in California, Monterey is required to plan for 3,654 new houses over the next 8 years to accommodate this projected need. The Land Use Element will need to be updated to ensure consistency with the 2019 Monterey Regional Airport Land Use Compatibility Plan. At the same time, State law triggers requirements to incorporate new data on natural hazards and climate change into the Safety Element along with actions to strengthen community resilience and emergency evacuation capacity.

Critical issues to be addressed in the General Plan Update include:

  • Housing supply and affordability
  • Land use mix and community character
  • Climate change and community resilience
  • Fire hazard planning update
  • Airport-related hazards, compatibility zones, and airport noise contours
  • Emergency preparedness and response
  • Impact of new growth on military readiness activities

Community participation is integral to the process and a broad-based, inclusive community engagement program will help provide opportunities for everyone in Monterey to have their say. Read more below to learn about the project, the timeline, and ways to get involved. Sign up on the top right of this page to stay informed via email.

Watch a short video to learn more about the key phases of Housing Elements: Housing Element Explainer 2022

Help Build A Housing Plan for Monterey!

Monterey 2031 is an important citywide project that involves updates to the Housing, Land Use, and Safety Elements of the City of Monterey General Plan to respond to emerging issues and new State laws. The update will be a collaborative effort between the City and its residents to create a blueprint that will guide Monterey in the years to come. All cities and counties in California are required by law to have a general plan. Like other communities in the Monterey Bay Area, the City is required to update the Housing Element of the General Plan by December 15, 2023 to address demographic trends, market conditions, and new State laws. Amid the ongoing housing shortage in California, Monterey is required to plan for 3,654 new houses over the next 8 years to accommodate this projected need. The Land Use Element will need to be updated to ensure consistency with the 2019 Monterey Regional Airport Land Use Compatibility Plan. At the same time, State law triggers requirements to incorporate new data on natural hazards and climate change into the Safety Element along with actions to strengthen community resilience and emergency evacuation capacity.

Critical issues to be addressed in the General Plan Update include:

  • Housing supply and affordability
  • Land use mix and community character
  • Climate change and community resilience
  • Fire hazard planning update
  • Airport-related hazards, compatibility zones, and airport noise contours
  • Emergency preparedness and response
  • Impact of new growth on military readiness activities

Community participation is integral to the process and a broad-based, inclusive community engagement program will help provide opportunities for everyone in Monterey to have their say. Read more below to learn about the project, the timeline, and ways to get involved. Sign up on the top right of this page to stay informed via email.

Watch a short video to learn more about the key phases of Housing Elements: Housing Element Explainer 2022

  • Planning Commission and City Council to Consider Approval of the Monterey 2031 General Plan Update and Certification of the EIR at a Public Hearing on July 16, 2024

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    On July 16, 2024, a joint meeting of the Planning Commission and City Council will be held to consider adoption of the Monterey 2031 General Plan Update, an update of the Housing (2023-2031), Land Use, Circulation, and Safety Elements; certification of the EIR; and adoption of environmental findings, statement of overriding consideration, and mitigation and monitoring program. The meeting will be held in the City Council Chambers at 7:00 P.M. or as soon thereafter as is practicable. The full agenda and agenda packet are available on I-Search Monterey: https://isearchmonterey.org/onbaseagendaonline/

    Written comment: Members of the public may submit comment(s) to cityclerk@monterey.gov until ½ hour before the start of the meeting. These messages are not read aloud during the meeting but are made available to the meeting body and public at https://monterey.gov/submitted-comments. All comments received become part of the record.

  • Monterey 2031 General Plan Update Environmental Impact Report (EIR) - Final Environmental Impact Report Available

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    The Monterey 2031 General Plan Update Environmental Impact Report (EIR) evaluates the potential impacts of the Project. The Project is the Monterey 2031 General Plan Update, which includes updates to the City of Monterey Housing, Land Use, Safety, and Circulation Elements, and is intended to respond to emerging issues and new State laws and guide development and conservation within the Planning Area. The EIR has been prepared on behalf of the City of Monterey in accordance with the California Environmental Quality Act.

    The EIR includes both the Draft and Final EIRs, and are available at this link:

    Draft EIR:


  • City of Monterey responds to inaccurate information contained in anonymous mailing titled “SAVE OUR WATERFRONT”

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    On Tuesday, June 25, 2024, City of Monterey staff was made aware that an anonymous author distributed a pamphlet by mail to a select number of City of Monterey residents. The mailer contains highly inaccurate information about the City’s Housing Element and zoning related to the state requirement that requires us to plan for 3,654 new houses over the next eight years to accommodate this projected need. It appears that the mailer was created to potentially delay the required update of the City’s housing element.

    To remind everyone: to provide new housing opportunities in the City is mandated by the State. The City of Monterey is required to plan for 3,654 housing units to be built within the next 8 years. The contents of the 3-page mailer, titled “SAVE OUR WATERFRONT," is copied below, with a City response to each of the statements. It is always our intention to be transparent, responsible and inclusive. We feel it is important to address the misinformation contained in this mailing.

    Under State law, the California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) must review and certify the City's 2023-31 Housing Element as complete. Since the April 30, 2024, submittal of the Housing Element to HCD, the City has been working directly with HCD staff to adequately address any outstanding comments. The Revised Draft Housing Element is now available for public review before it is formally resubmitted to HCD for certification. The Monterey 2031 General Plan Update consisting of the Housing, Land Use, Safety, and Circulation Elements will be considered for adoption at a joint Planning Commission and City Council hearing tentatively scheduled for July 16, 2024. As we have done throughout this entire process, we encourage residents to participate in the public hearings. More information is available at https://haveyoursaymonterey.org/monterey2031.


    BELOW IS A COPY OF A MAILED FLYER SOME CITY OF MONTEREY RESIDENTS RECEIVED IN THEIR MAILBOX IN JUNE 2024, AND OUR RESPONSE TO THE MISINFORMATION IT CONTAINS. THE MAILER CONSISTED OF THE WRITTEN CONTENT AND THE TWO MAPS. THE CITY’S RESPONSE IS IN ITALICS.

    COMMENT 1 IN MAILER: SAVE OUR WATERFRONT - The City of Monterey is in the process of adopting the 2023-31 Housing Element which proposes to rezone a section of the waterfront Area into the Downtown Specific Plan Area to permit the development of housing in the Waterfront Area. (Apartments/Condominiums}

    SECTION OF WATERFRONT AREA PROPOSED TO BE REZONED: On the Monterey Bay side of Del Monte Ave. between Camino El Estero and Washington St.
    CITY RESPONSE TO COMMENT 1: The City does NOT propose to rezone the area along the bayside of Del Monte Avenue between Camino El Estero and Washington Street for residential uses. On Map 3-3: Opportunity Areas, a yellow line was shown to generally depict the opportunity areas; however, not all parcels within each opportunity area are a potential opportunity site for housing. The Downtown opportunity area is mapped on Map 3-4: Downtown Sites where individual parcels are identified as opportunity sites. As you can see on Map 3-4, there are no opportunity sites proposed on the bayside of Del Monte Avenue between Camino El Estero and Washington. The City can amend the Downtown opportunity area, outlined in yellow below, to clarify this intent.

    Map 3.4, page 38 - https://haveyoursaymonterey.org/17336/widgets/58946/documents/56479

    COMMENT 2 IN MAILER: The Waterfront Specific Plan does not permit the development of housing.
    CITY RESPONSE TO COMMENT 2: This comment is generally accurate with a minor correction. The City adopted a Waterfront Master Plan. Both the Waterfront Master Plan and the Coastal Commission certified Monterey Harbor Land Use Plan (Coastal Plan) do not allow residential uses on the bayside of Del Monte Avenue between Camino El Estero and Washington. For these reasons, the City is not proposing any opportunity sites in this area.

    COMMENT 3 IN MAILER: Nowhere in the 2023-31 Housing Element is it written this section of the Waterfront Area is to be rezoned into the Downtown Specific Plan Area; however, the 4 Maps in the 2023-31 Housing Element shows/indicates this is the City's intention to do so. Map 3-3: Opportunity Areas clearly shows the section of the Waterfront Area being in the Downtown Specific Plan Area. This area is where the vertical black line stops.
    CITY RESPONSE TO COMMENT 3: The City of Monterey is not proposing to incorporate the Waterfront Area into the Downtown Specific Plan. See response above to Comment 1.

    COMMENT 4 IN MAILER: 2023-31 HOUSING ELEMENT (3-11) states: "To facilitate housing development downtown, the following strategies have been incorporated into the Housing Element Action Plan (Chapter 4): * Program 1-C: Revise City policy and regulation to incorporate a clear statement that 100 percent residential projects are permitted throughout the downtown area, except on/adjacent to Alvarado Street per City Council resolution 21-129 C.S. The City of Monterey does need additional housing but not in the 2 block area of the Waterfront.
    CITY RESPONSE TO COMMENT 4: See Response to Comments 1 and 3 above.

    COMMENT 5 IN MAILER: (CITY RESPONSE IN ITALICS)
    HOW CAN YOU HELP STOP HOUSING IN THE WATERFRONT AREA
    CITY RESPONSE TO COMMENT 5: Housing is not proposed in the Waterfront Area.
    1. Spread the above information to family, friends, and business owners.
    City Response: Do not share the flyer because it contains misinformation.

    2. Immediately email the City Council opposing the rezoning of the Waterfront Area into the Downtown Specific Plan Area to permit the development of housing.
    City Response: As always, let the City know if you have additional questions. Email suggest@monterey.gov with any questions or comments.

    3. Email the cityclerk@monterey.org with your opposition to the rezoning starting Friday July 12th and request it to be posted in the public comments for City Council Meeting on July 16th.
    City response: Gather factual data first and then make an informed decision. The information contained in the anonymous flyer is not accurate. Attend the joint meeting of the Planning Commission and City Council on July 16th voicing your opposition to the rezoning to permit the development of housing in the Waterfront Area.

    ADDITIONAL CITY RESPONSE TO COMMENT 5: The Monterey 2031 General Plan Update consisting of the Housing, Land Use, Safety, and Circulation Elements will be considered for adoption at a Planning Commission and City Council hearing tentatively scheduled for July 16, 2024. As the City has done through this entire process, we encourage residents to participate in the July 16, 2024, joint meeting. More information is available at https://haveyoursaymonterey.org/monterey2031.

    Map 3.3 is on page 35 of the Revised Draft of the Housing Element Volume 1 - https://haveyoursaymonterey.org/17336/widgets/58946/documents/56479

    This map is on page 11 of the Downtown Specific Plan, posted at https://files.monterey.org/Document%20Center/CommDev/Planning/Downtown%20Specific%20Plan/20_0519-Downtown-P-Amend-Web.pdf
    ----------------------------


  • 2023-2031 Draft Housing Element Submittal to HCD

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    On June 27, 2024, the City submitted the revised Draft 2023-31 Housing Element to HCD, updated to continue responding to HCD's comment letter of December 22, 2023.

  • HCD Review Letter Received June 26, 2024

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    On June 26, 2024, the City received a review letter from HCD in response to the City’s formal Housing Element submittal on April 30, 2024.

  • Letters Received During the 7- Day Public Comment Period for the Revised Draft 2023-2031 Housing Element

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    The revised 2023-2031 Draft Housing Element was made available for public comment between June 18 and June 26, 2024 during which time 44 comments on the content of the revised draft were received. These letters and the City's response to these comments are provided below.

  • Revised Draft 2023-2031 Housing Element for Public Review

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    Under State law, the California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) must review and certify the City's 2023-31 Housing Element as complete. Since the April 30, 2024 submittal of the Housing Element to HCD, the City has been working directly with HCD staff to adequately address any outstanding comments. The Revised Draft Housing Element is now available for public review before it is formally resubmitted to HCD for certification. The City intends to resubmit the Draft Housing Element to HCD on Wednesday, June 26, 2024. The Monterey 2031 General Plan Update consisting of the Housing, Land Use, Safety, and Circulation Elements will be considered for adoption at a joint Planning Commission and City Council hearing scheduled for July 16, 2024.

    Documents to be submitted to HCD on June 26, 2024:

    In the documents below, note that redline track changes are revisions made for the April 30, 2024 Draft Housing Element resubmittal to HCD, and blue highlights are subsequent revisions made for the public hearing draft based on discussions with HCD.


    Comments can be sent to the Planning Division by emailing Christy Sabdo, Senior Associate Planner: sabdo@monterey.org or mailing a letter to City of Monterey Planning Division, 580 Pacific Street, Monterey, CA 93940. All comments received will be shared with the Planning Commission and City Council ahead of the public hearing planned in July 2024.

  • Revised Draft 2023-2031Housing Element Submitted to HCD for Review

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    On April 30, 2024, the City submitted the revised Draft 2023-31 Housing Element, updated to respond to HCD's comment letter of December 22, 2023.The revised Draft Element was made available for public comment between April 18 and April 30, 2024 during which time 56 comments on the content of the revised draft were received. A letter from the Monterey-Salinas-Transit recommended incorporating a revision to a policy in support of infill in locations with pedestrian and bicycle infrastructure; a letter from the Monterey Bay Economic Partnership (MBEP) expressed support of the Element overall and recommended some revisions to programs to further support development feasibility; a letter from LandWatch reiterated opposition to development at Ford Ord; and fifty-three letters primarily from residents of the unincorporated area south of the City of Monterey expressed concerns for the cumulative impacts of housing development in the Highway 68 Area in combination with housing development pursuant to the County of Monterey Housing Element in the same vicinity.

    Given that the revised content of the Draft Element has been reviewed informally with HCD over the past several months, the City's submittal to HCD requests an expedited review of the Draft Element in anticipation of the scheduled hearing before the City Council on June 18, 2024.

    Cover Letter to HCD dated April 30, 2024

    Volume 1 - Draft Housing Element

    Appendix A - Sites Inventory
    Appendix A - Monterey Sites Inventory HCD Form
    Appendix B - Needs Assessment
    Appendix C - Housing Constraints
    Appendix D - AFFH Analysis
    Appendix E - Fifth Cycle Accomplishments
    Appendix F - Additional Analysis and Information in Support of Housing Projections
    Appendix G - Outreach Materials
    Letters received during online posting, April 17 - April 30, 2024



  • Revised Draft 2023-31 Housing Element Available for Public Review

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    Under State law, the California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) must review and certify the City's 2023-31 Housing Element as complete. On December 22, 2023 HCD completed review of the Draft Housing Element, finding that while it meets many of the statutory requirements, some revisions are needed for full compliance with State law. The City has been working directly with HCD staff to ensure revisions made adequately address the comments. The Revised Draft Housing Element is now available for public review before it is formally resubmitted to HCD for certification. The City intends to resubmit on Friday, April 26, 2024 and a Joint Planning Commission and City Council hearing is anticipated in June, when the Monterey 2031 General Plan Update (including the Housing Element) and EIR will be considered for adoption.

    Documents to be submitted to HCD on April 30, 2024:


    Comments can be sent to the Planning Division by emailing Christy Sabdo, Senior Associate Planner: sabdo@monterey.org or mailing a letter to City of Monterey Planning Division, 580 Pacific Street, Monterey, CA 93940. All comments received will be shared with the Planning Commission and City Council ahead of the public hearing planned in June 2024.

  • 45-Day Public Review Period Begins for the Draft Program-Level Draft Environmental Impact Report (EIR) for the Monterey 2031 General Plan Update

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    The City of Monterey invites comments on the Monterey 2031 General Plan Update Draft EIR during a 45-day public comment period that begins on February 9, 2024 and ends on March 25, 2024 at 5:00 PM.


    Project Background: The Project under review is the Monterey 2031 General Plan Update, which includes updates to the City of Monterey Housing, Land Use, Safety, and Circulation Elements, and is intended to respond to emerging issues and new State laws and guide development and conservation within the Planning Area. The following are some of the specific objectives of the targeted General Plan Update: 1) Address the Regional Housing Needs Allocation, 2) Provide a variety of housing opportunities, 3) Provide equal housing opportunities, 4) Address affordable housing needs, 5) Address the housing needs of special needs groups, 6) Remove potential constraints to housing, 7) Maintain existing housing, 8) Provide adequate housing sites, 9) Promote sustainability and energy efficiency, 10) Address risks from natural hazards, and 11) Consistency with the Airport Land Use Compatibility Plan.

    Draft EIR Overview: This Draft Environmental Impact Report (EIR) evaluates the potential impacts of the proposed Monterey 2031 General Plan, referred to as the “Proposed Plan.” The Proposed Plan is both a policy document and an implementation tool for implementing the City’s General Plan. It contains goals, policies, and programs to guide future housing development within the approximately 8.7-square-mile Planning Area. The Proposed Plan was developed in response to policy direction provided by the City Council, Planning Commission, and community. This Draft EIR has been prepared on behalf of the City of Monterey, in accordance with the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). The City of Monterey is the lead agency for this EIR, as defined by the California Environmental Quality Act, Public Resources Code Section 21000, et seq. (CEQA).

    The Draft EIR is a public information document that assesses the potential physical environmental impacts that could result from implementation of the Project, recommends mitigation measures to lessen or eliminate adverse impacts, examines feasible alternatives to the Project, and is intended to inform City of Monterey decision makers, other responsible agencies and the public. The Draft EIR evaluates potential physical environmental impacts that could result from the Project and identifies that the Project may have significant and unavoidable impacts in the following areas: agricultural resources, air quality, greenhouse gases, transportation, utilities, and wildfire.

    Public Review and Comment Period: The City invites comments on the Monterey 2031 General Plan Update Draft EIR during a 45-day comment period that begins on February 9, 2024, and ends on March 25, 2024 at 5:00 PM. The City directs comments to be submitted via email to sabdo@monterey.org. Alternatively, comments may also be submitted in writing by hand delivery or mail to Christy Sabdo, AICP, Senior Associate Planner, City of Monterey Planning Division, 580 Pacific Street, Monterey, CA 93940. Please reference Monterey 2031 General Plan Update Draft EIR Comments in all correspondence.

    The public hearing, anticipated to be held April of 2024, will be noticed separately.


    Updated Draft General Plan Elements:

Page last updated: 12 Jul 2024, 04:53 PM