Frequently Asked Questions
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Frequently Asked Questions


What is the City’s Comprehensive Plan?

Comprehensive plans express a community’s values, priorities, and aspirations. They provide a 20-to-30-year vision and roadmap for a city’s future. Warrenton’s Comprehensive Plan expresses Warrenton’s framework values and specific goals and policies for the environment, land use, transportation, housing, capital facilities, utilities, and other important elements for future planning.


What is the purpose and goal of Warrenton’s Comprehensive Plan?

For Warrenton to remain economically competitive it needs a vision for how it will grow, how it will protect its natural resources, and how it will provide jobs, affordable housing, and mobility.  Managed well, growth can be a boon for a community, adding value to its businesses and neighborhoods and quality of life.  Managed poorly, growth can result in housing prices soaring or dropping, traffic congestion, the loss of open space, and degradation of air quality.  The issue of where and how Warrenton should grow is an important one with the current development trend for rapid development of greenfield land in outlying locations.  Greenfield development requires the installation of expensive new infrastructure systems and schools. The challenge is finding the right balance of new growth that does not come at the expense of losing the sense of place that makes the community of Warrenton a desirable place to live.


The purpose of this Plan is to determine a future vision that:

  • Establishes a balance of the interests and needs of the area residents, businesses, guests, and visitors
  • Guides development and improvements in the area to offer a wider and more diverse range of residential and commercial development opportunities


Goals of the Plan are to:

  • Create a vision for the future development in the City of Warrenton
  • Build consensus among area stakeholders
  • Develop a strategy to create a thriving, sustainable and desirable community which addresses land use, zoning, area identity, urban design, transportation, capital improvements, public safety and the health and vitality of the area
  • Recognize and protect the character of the area


What is the role of the adopted Comprehensive Plan?

The Comprehensive Plan covers all of the relevant physical development components, including land use, zoning, water and sewer needs, street and traffic planning, fire and police stations, topography, slopes, soils, historic preservation, and urban design elements. Although Missouri law does not require that particular zoning decisions strictly conform to the land use plan, it is one of the major factors courts will consider when reviewing a city’s zoning decisions, and one of the primary bases used for the staff’s recommendation on any particular zoning request.


What is Zoning?

Zoning helps implement land use plans by regulating exactly where uses are allowed on specific parcels of land and how they can be developed in terms of placement on the lot, height, density, access, parking, signage, setbacks, and other design requirements.


What is the purpose of a proposed land use map?

The proposed land use map shows where, in general, the different uses should be located in the city in the long term. Current zoning often does not comply with proposed land use as recommended in the adopted land use plan, and sometimes does not reflect current land use. This can cause uncertainty among property owners and interested parties as to exactly what is allowed on a piece of property.

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