General Plan Update Documents

Final Windsor 2040 General Plan

The Final Town of Windsor General Plan is available on the Town’s website. The General Plan is a long-range planning document that is considered the Town’s “constitution” or blueprint because it guides growth, traffic patterns, housing, and more. The General Plan is designed to address the issues facing the town for the next 20 years. The Plan contains the goals and policies upon which the Town Council and Planning Commission will base many of their decisions. The General Plan is presented as a collection of seven “topical elements,” including: Land Use and Community Design; Economic Development; Transportation and Mobility; Public Facilities and Services; Environmental Resources; Public Health and Safety; and Housing. The Town Council adopted the 2040 General Plan on April 4, 2018.

Final Programmatic Environmental Impact Report (FEIR)

The Town of Windsor has prepared the Final Environmental Impact Report for the 2040 General Plan. Hard copies of the Final EIR are available for review at the Planning Division front counter and Windsor Regional Library, both located at 9291 Old Redwood Highway Windsor, CA 95492.


Draft Programmatic Environmental Impact Report (DEIR)

The Town of Windsor has prepared a Draft Programmatic Environmental Impact Report (Program EIR) to determine the nature and extent of the 2040 General Plan’s potential impact on the surrounding environment.

The DEIR will be available for public comment for a 50-day review period. The purpose of the comment period is to consider the content of the DEIR and the potential environmental impacts that may result from project implementation, not the positive or negative attributes of the project itself. The public comment period will begin on October 20, 2017 and end on December 8, 2017.

Notice of Availability (October 20, 2017, 0.6mb)

Revised Public Review Draft General Plan

The Revised Public Review Draft General Plan reflects revisions made to the elements based on input from the Town Council, Planning Commission, and members of the public during a series of meetings held from November 2016 through early 2017.

Complete Revised Public Review Draft General Plan (October 20, 2017, 63mb)


Civic Center Visioning Plan (2016)

The Civic Center Visioning Plan was adopted in 2016 and provides guidance for future growth of the Civic Center area. This guidance will define a public space framework that establishes natural resources and public access as fixed elements which frame development that accommodate recommended land use program. The Civic Center Visioning Study will serve as a tool to guide the Town in the development of public improvements and to evaluate and guide developer or public/private partnership proposals for built uses whether they be civic, commercial, cultural, or residential.

Civic Center Visioning Plan (2016) (March 8, 2017, 6.7mb)

Notice of Preparation – Program Environmental Impact Report (EIR)

The NOP solicits comments from regulatory agencies about the scope and content of environmental information to be included in the 2040 General Plan Program EIR related to the agencies’ statutory responsibilities. The agencies will use the Town’s Program EIR when considering their permits or other approvals related to the General Plan Update. The NOP also provides an opportunity for interested persons to tell the Town what environmental issues they think should be addressed in the Program EIR.

Notice of Completion (NOP) (November 30, 2016, 0.9mb)

Public Review Draft General Plan

The Public Review Draft General Plan reflects revisions made to the elements based on input from the Town Council, Planning Commission, and members of the public during a series of meetings held from August through November 2016.

Complete Public Review Draft General Plan (November 17, 2016, 34mb)

Preliminary Draft General Plan Elements

The Policy Document, including the following Elements, is the most important part of the General Plan. It contains the Vision Statement, goals, policies, and implementation programs that will guide future Town decisions. The Policy Document also contains the land use diagram, which serves as a general guide to the distribution of land uses throughout the town, and the circulation diagram, which serves as a guide for the development of transportation improvements that support planned land uses.

The Town has begun drafting the General Plan Elements, which will be discussed over a series of public meetings with both the Town Council and Planning Commission. The Elements will be posted on the website in advance of the meetings, as soon as they are available for public review.

Draft Elements

Windsor Civic Center Visioning Study – Community Visioning Charrette Summary


Windsor Civic Center Visioning Study – Community Visioning Charrette Summary

This presentation provides a summary of the Community Visioning Charrette that the Town held from May 23-26, 2016 for the Windsor Civic Center. The presentation includes information on the site, stakeholder input, and key findings from the charrette.

General Plan Alternatives Public Input Summary

This document provides a summary of public input gathered as part of the Windsor General Plan Update Alternatives Phase. The purpose of the Alternatives Phase is to identify, analyze, and select preferred land use options for 10 Focus Areas within the Windsor Urban Growth Boundary (UGB). Details on the Focus Area Alternatives can be found in the Alternatives Report.

This summary includes the results of all public input from an Open House Workshop, the Online Townhall Forum, or hard copy or digital PDF worksheets submitted through March 24, 2016. The Town set a deadline on gathering input for this summary in order to summarize it and present it to the Town Council and Planning Commission at their April 4, 2016, Joint Study Session.

Summary Report Appendices

General Plan Alternatives Report Public Review Draft

General Plan Update Alternatives Report Public Review Draft

The General Plan Alternatives Report provides a process within the larger General Plan process, which guides the community toward the selection of a preferred land use alternative. The report provides a variety of land use alternatives for ten selected focus areas within the town. These alternatives will then be narrowed down to create a preferred Townwide Alternative with a land use pattern that best reflects how Windsor wishes to grow and change. As part of the Alternatives process, three Open House Workshops were held in Windsor in early March 2016, to gather community input on their preferred alternative and vision for the town. The information provided by residents will then be presented to the Town Council in early April, where a preferred Townwide Alternative will be selected.

General Plan Alternatives Workbook

Alternatives Workbook

This Workbook is intended to provide an overview of the General Plan Alternatives Process, which includes all of the information presented at the March 2016 Open House Workshops. The three open house workshops  were intended to select a preferred land use alternative for the Town, where community input was gathered. A Townwide Preferred Alternative will be selected in late April based on the from the Alternatives process.
General Plan Update Alternatives Process Handout
This document is intended to serve as a primer for the Town of Windsor General Plan Update Alternatives process. During this phase the Town will develop and explore different options for how the community could grow and develop in the future. The land use alternatives will be focused on the amount or types of development that occur within the existing Town Limits, as well as the Urban Growth Boundary, where there is potential for development during the General Plan planning horizon through 2040. The General Plan Update Alternatives Process has been structured to provide ample opportunities for public input.
Land Use Concepts and Evaluation Criteria Workbook
This workbook will be used by the Planning Commission and City Council to review and confirm a range of possible land use patterns that the Town will consider in planning its future. As concepts, the land use patterns presented in this workbook are intended to facilitate discussion about the optimal mix of land uses the Town should consider as part of the General Plan Update process.

Development Options Report
Development Options Report

This report presents data and information on Windsor’s historic growth trends and options for future growth, and compares that with recent growth projections. It analyzes historic trends estimated and future growth projections compared to remaining development capacity within the Town’s urban growth boundary (UGB). This report is intended to provide residents and decision-makers with information about future growth in Windsor in preparation for developing and evaluating land use alternatives as part of the General Plan Update.

Market Analysis
Market Analysis

This analysis presents market projections for both residential and non-residential growth in Windsor for the period 2015-2040. It has been prepared to help support the development and evaluation of land use alternatives for the Town’s General Plan Update.

Community Survey Results

TOWGPU_CommunitySurveyResults_220-4097As part of the General Plan Update, the Town conducted a telephone survey to gauge residents opinion on a variety of issues about Windsor. The survey built upon a survey conducted in 1994 during the development of the existing 1996 General Plan and included new contemporary issues that have emerged over the past 20 years. Results of the survey were presented to the Town Council and Planning Commission on July 14, 2015. 





Newsletter #2

Newsletter #2: Issues, Opportunities, and Vision

The second General plan Update newsletter is now available. Items covered in this issue include:

    • Town Leaders Contemplate a New Vision for Windsor in 2040
    • What Makes Windsor Great and What Needs to Change?
    • Windsor’s Youth Talk Planning and the Future
    • Taking the Community’s Pulse
    • Milestone Report Documents Windsor’s Current Conditions
    • Development Review Process Takes Center Stage
Hoja Informativa #2
    • Making Windsor’s Street More Complete
    • Town Council Adopts the Housing Element
    • Parks and Recreation Master Plan Update
    • Getting Involved in the General Plan Update

Assets, Issues, and Opportunities Report

00_PRD_T0WGPU_BR_CoverThe Assets, Issues, and Opportunities Report is intended to focus community attention on key issues and opportunities that have major policy implications as Windsor considers how to grow and change over the next 25 years. The Report summarizes input from the stakeholder interviews, focus group meetings, online town hall forum (, and Planning Commission and Town Council, as well as information and data from the Draft Background Report and Town staff observations. The Report is organized into two major parts. The first part provides an overview and the purpose of the Assets, Issues, and Opportunities Report. It summarizes how the Report relates to other General Plan Update documents and the process, lists the sources of information used to develop this Report, and provides an overview of the Report’s organization and contents. The second part discusses key assets, issues, and opportunities that have been identified to this point in the Update process. 

Draft Vision and Guiding Principles

TOWGPU_Draft-Revised-Vision-Statement_2015-05-11_Page_1The draft Vision and Guiding Principles is available for review. The Town did  not drafting a the Vision from scratch; they started by refining the existing 1996 General Plan Vision based on input from residents new community values and priorities. Part of the revision included updating the Vision statement to be more inclusive of the Town’s expectations for its future. Vision expresses the aspirations of the Town and describes an ideal Windsor in 2040.The Town also converted the narrative part of the existing Vision into a set of Guiding Principles. The Guiding Principles establish broad benchmarks for the rest of the General Plan Update process and the General Plan itself. They set forth guidance on how the City will achieve the vision.

The Vision will remain a draft until the Town Council adopts it, along with the completed General Plan, at the end of the Update process. The Vision will be a foundational document in the General Plan Update process.

General Plan Background Report Public Review Draft

The General Plan Background Report takes a “snapshot” of Windsor’s current conditions across a wide range of topics. This report provides context for making land use and policy decisions, and is intended to be objective and policy-neutral. The Public Review Draft Background Report will remain a draft until the Town adopts the updated General Plan. Until that time, the Town will collect public comments on the Report.


Cover and Table of Contents (1.4 mb)
Chapter 1: Introduction (0.4 mb)
Chapter 2: Demographics (1.9 mb)
Chapter 3: Land Use (3.7 mb)
Chapter 4: Housing (3.1 mb)
Chapter 5: Transportation and Mobility (3.5 mb)
Chapter 6: Utilities (6.1 mb)
Chapter 7: Public Services (6.6 mb)
Chapter 8: Environmental Resources (4.1 mb)
Chapter 9: Hazards (8.9 mb)

Windsor 2040 Online Townhall Forum Summary of Comments and Ideas

As part of the Windsor General Plan Update, the Town is using an innovative, new community engagement tool to engage residents in a dialogue about Windsor’s future – the online Townhall Forum. The Townhall Forum, run through a service called Mindmixer, is an community engagement tool that allows residents to communicate with each other, Town leaders, and Town staff about the issues relevant to Windsor. This document summarizes the first round of input. The first round of the online Townhall Forum, which was open from August 15 to October 31, allowed residents to provide input on a variety of topics, including health and quality of life, transportation and mobility, growth and development, and economic development. Comments provided in this report are ideas or suggestions provided by visitors to the Windsor2040 website. Comments have not been edited for spelling or content.

Online Townhall Forum Report #1








Final Housing Element

The Housing Element is a policy document that supports a diversity of housing types, densities, and prices in order to meet the needs of current and future Windsor residents of all income levels and ages. The purpose of the Housing Element is to identify and analyze existing and projected housing needs in order to preserve, improve, and develop housing for all economic segments of the community. The Town adopted the Housing Element on January 7, 2015, and received certification by HCD on February 12, 2015.



Complete Streets General Plan Amendments

The California Complete Streets Act of 2008 (AB 1358) requires that cities and counties modify the circulation element of their general plans to address a balanced, multimodal transportation network of complete streets. Complete streets are intended to meet the needs of all users of streets, roads, and highways, including motorists, pedestrians, bicyclists, children, persons with disabilities, seniors, movers of commercial goods, and users of public transportation, in a manner that is suitable to the rural, suburban, or urban context of the general plan.

The 2013 Metropolitan Transportation Commission’s (MTC) performance and accountability policies required jurisdictions in the Bay Area to adopt complete streets resolutions if they wished to seek funding through MTC’s One Bay Area Grant (OBAG) program in 2014. The Town of Windsor approved a resolution to adopt its Complete Streets Policy and adopted Complete Streets Design Guidelines on January 16, 2013. For 2015, MTC adopted new OBAG program eligibility requirements that require jurisdictions to have a general plan that complies with AB 1358 no later than January 31, 2015. As part of the Windsor 2040 General Plan Update the Town will address AB 1358; however, due to MTC’s OBAG program requirements Windsor must accelerate updates to its transportation-related goals, policies, and implementation programs to address AB 1358 ahead of the Update process.

In order to ensure that Windsor remains eligible for MTC’s OBAG program the Town is proposing to amend the 1996 General Plan Community Development Element for consistency with Complete Streets mandates.

Complete Streets Amendments (Complete Document)
Complete Streets Amendments (Revisions Only)







Stakeholder Interviews Summary

On MaTOWGPU_Stakeholder-Interview-Summary-Covery 27 through 29, 2014, the Town of Windsor General Plan Update Consultants conducted interviews with key community leaders and stakeholders to gather feedback on key issues and opportunities that should be addressed during the General Plan Update process. The interviews included over 30 participants, including elected officials, Town staff, representatives from major institutions and organizations, business-owners, development interests and real estate agents, and others. The input provided during these interviews will help the consultants and Town staff focus on key issues and priorities that are important to Windsor’s present and future. This document will serve as a reference for the Town Council, Planning Commission, Town staff, the consultants, and others involved in the Update process.

Newsletter #1: General Plan Update Overview

Español Boletín
Español Boletín

Your input is needed to make our great community even better! TOWGPU_newsletter1_5-22-2014_small_Page_1 In May the Town of Windsor initiated a two-year process to update the Town’s General Plan, which was last updated in 1996. The General Plan is a long-range planning document, and the updated Windsor General Plan will look ahead to 2040. The most important part of the General Plan Update process is public engagement. The public input we receive will help shape the vision, goals, and policies of the General Plan. The first General Plan Update newsletter provides an overview of the Town’s General Plan Update and details on how you can be engaged in this important process.


Existing and Past Town Documents

2015 Town of Windsor General Plan

This General Plan was adopted in 1996 and sets the goals and policies that form the basis of land use decisions. Once the Windsor 2040 General Plan is adopted, this plan will be archived and no longer in effect.

Town of Windsor Housing Element 2007-2014

Adopted in 2009, this housing element will be replaced as a part of the Windsor 2040 General Plan process. The Housing Element will be updated by January 31, 2015, as part of the General Plan Update process. Once the Windsor 2040 General Plan is adopted, this Element will become part of the General Plan.

Windsor Station Area/Downtown Specific Plan

Adopted January 18, 20112, the Station Area/Downtown Specific Plan sets forth a framework for the next era of Downtown Windsor development. The Plan includes guiding principles that provide an overall vision for the area, goals and policies for each topic, as well development standards/ zoning regulations and design guidelines for development. It also includes an  implementation program, with timelines and responsibilities.

Windsor Station Area/Downtown Specific Plan Community Survey

Published in March 2011 the Station Area/Downtown Specific Plan Community Survey summarizes the results of a survey conducted as part of the Specific Plan process. Surveys were mailed January 3, 2011 to all Windsor
residents, with a return-by date of January 18, 2011, (return postage paid). The survey consisted of 17 questions, two of which were open ended, concerning land use, urban design, transportation, and economic development, as well as demographics. In total, 806 completed surveys were returned out of 9,453 mailed out, resulting in a  response rate of 8.5 percent.

SDAT Final Report: Old Red Going Green

In January 2008, the community of Windsor, CA submitted a proposal to the American Institute of Architects (AIA) for a Sustainable Design Assessment Team (SDAT) to assist its citizens in addressing key issues facing the community. The identified issues included land use planning, housing affordability, energy, transportation, and economic development opportunities. This report is a detailed version of the background findings and recommendations that were presented to the community by SDAT in 2008.

Part 1    Part 2    Opportunity Map (Google Earth)

Shiloh Road Vision Plan

The 2001 Shiloh Road Vision Plan sets for guiding principles and design guidelines for development on lands along Shiloh Road east of Hwy 101.

1994 Community Vision Questionnaire

In 1994, during preparation of the existing General Plan, the Town conducted a Community Vision Questionnaire (survey) to provide additional information for the General Plan Advisory Committee, Town staff, and the consultant team assisting the Town to use in formulating visions, goals, and policy direction for the General Plan. The purpose of the survey, as well as other public outreach activities conducted at the time, was to provide a picture of the range of opinions among Windsor’s citizens. The information provided through the survey was intended to be one of many inputs used in formulating the existing General Plan. The survey, provided in both English and Spanish, was mailed to about 8,600 households and businesses in November 1994. About 1,918 surveys were returned for a return rate of 22 percent. 

Other Information

The following documents provide useful information related to the topics and issues that will be addressed during the Windsor 2040 General Plan Update.

A Portrait of Sonoma County: Human Development Report 2014

Published in May 2014, this report provides an in-depth look at how residents of Sonoma County are faring in three fundamental areas of life: health, access to knowledge, and living standards.

Citizen’s Guide to Planning

This is a citizen’s guide to land use planning as it is practiced in California. Its purpose is to explain, in general terms, how local communities regulate land use and to define some commonly used planning terms.