New Castle County launches what it bills as a community-based 2050 comprehensive plan

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New Castle County begins an important two-year process of developing a new countywide comprehensive plan which will guide growth and development.

“As the years progress, our current lifestyles will undoubtedly change,” County Executive Matt Meyer said. “Transportation methods will evolve, environmental challenges will occur, and the job opportunities of today may change. What NCC@2050 brings is a prime opportunity for our community to be prepared and trained for those careers of the future. That is why I am calling for broad public input from every neighborhood, every industry, and every person to help build a vibrant, resilient, and inclusive future that reflects our community values and aspirations.”

The current Unified Development Plan has been tweaked over the years but is still widely criticized for provisions that according to critics drive up costs and timelines even though final plans were rarely changed.

Developers claimed that the red tape led meeting minimal requirements and closed the door on doing additional work in improving the appearance of projects.

The Department of Land Use will manage the comprehensive planning process and has developed a central website, Residentswill be able to participate in community surveys, explore interactive mapping tools, sign up for email updates, learn more about the county’s planning process, and submit photos of their favorite places.

As part of NCC@2050, a series of virtual public meetings will be held over the next several months to begin a conversation with the community. Topics of discussion will include environmental justice, economic development, transportation, housing, as well as other topics that are identified through the online survey, a release stated.

“Changes, recently witnessed, with technology advances, and better capabilities to engage, collaborate and address issues of the past and the future will provide new and fresh approach to planning for our future communities,” Land Use General Manager Rich Hall said. “Now is the time for all residents to engage in meaningful discussions about how to move New Castle County forward.”

Several other educational components of NCC@2050 include a Youth Planning Board and Planning 101. The Youth Planning Board is a 10-month program designed to expose young adults, aged 14-22, to civic engagement, planning, and other skills while helping to develop the comprehensive plan.

Planning 101 is a series of free online courses developed in partnership with the University of Delaware that discusses why planning matters and helps to explain the planning process. After completing the online courses, participants will receive a Citizen Planner Certificate.

To learn more about the County’s comprehensive plan, including how you can get involved, please visit

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