Planning and Land Use | Cherokee County, GA - Where Metro Meets the Mountains
Comprehensive Plan
Planning and Land Use


Why do we plan?

Effective planning ensures that future development will occur where, when, and how the community and local government wants. There are several important benefits to the entire community that result from the planning process:
  • Quality of life is maintained and improved.
  • There is a vision, clearly stated and shared by all, that describes the future of the community.
  • Private property rights are protected.
  • Economic development is encouraged and supported.
  • There is more certainty about where development will occur, what it will be like, when it will happen, and how the costs of development will be met.
The excerpt above is taken from Why Do We Plan?, a report from the Georgia Department of Community Affairs that provides background information on Comprehensive Planning in Georgia.

What is a Comprehensive Plan?

The Comprehensive Plan is a document or set of documents designed to review the past trends, evaluate the current conditions, describe the desired future scenario, and map out an implementation plan to achieve the desired goals for a given jurisdiction.   

In Georgia, the Comprehensive Plan must include 3 components: the Public Participation Plan, the Community Assessment and the Community Agenda. They can be viewed on the
Documents page.  The Public Participation Plan is a brief document that outlines how the general public will be involved in developing the plan. The Community Assessment is a detailed report with sections on Population, Economic Development, Housing, Natural and Cultural Resources, Community Facilities and Services, Intergovernmental Coordination, Transportation System and Land Use. This component is typically developed by planners with expertise in these areas because of the extensive research involved. The final result of the Community Assessment is a list of issues that have come to light which need to be addressed in the Community Agenda document. This final document presents a comprehensive vision for the community for the next 30 years. This includes goals and objectives for the local government to use to direct projects and initiatives.  While only updated periodically, the Community Agenda, including the Future Development Map are consulted regularly to guide development in the jurisdiction. 

Coordination with State and Regional Plans

Every 10 years local governments in Georgia are required to revise and update their Comprehensive Plan by state law.  The 2008 Comprehensive Plan for Cherokee County and the cities of Ball Ground and Waleska will guide the work done by the local governments for the next 10 years. Since these jurisdictions are located within the Atlanta metro area and the State of Georgia, the Atlanta Regional Commission and the Georgia Department of Community Affairs reviewed the documents to ensure compliance with the Minimum Planning Standards. These organizations will also incorporate our plan into the regional and state plans. This process is designed to ensure quality local plans guide and inform regional and state-wide plans.

How was the Comprehensive Plan Updated?

Information about how the Comprehensive Plan was updated is available on the Process page.
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