Comprehensive Plan Update (2024)

            Comprehensive Plan Open House April 27, 2023 Video

Arlington In Motion

2024 & Beyond

The City of Arlington is completing the 2024 Comprehensive Plan. Arlington is updating the plan to meet the requirements of the Washington State Growth Management Act and to align with Puget Sound Regional Council Policy Vision 2050 and the Snohomish County Countywide Planning Policies.

As an urban edge city currently consisting of nine square miles, Arlington’s current population of 19,868 (2020 census) is expected to grow by about 8,500 households with a projected population of 34,649 by 2044, according to Snohomish County’s Buildable Lands Report (BLR).

Arlington consists of three primary planning areas: Old Town Business and Residential Districts; Arlington Municipal Airport and the surrounding Cascade Industrial Center, and the Smokey Point planning area. The Old Town planning area consists of early to mid-1900 architecturally styled residential homes and commercial buildings, with an iconic “Main Street” serving the downtown corridor. The Airport and Cascade Industrial Center planning area includes 4,019 acres between the Cities of Arlington and Marysville reserved for manufacturing and industrial development. The third planning area, Smokey Point, has the most economic potential of all. Located along the western edge of the City and parallel to I-5, the Smokey Point Boulevard corridor is currently being studied for development as a transit oriented, mixed-use corridor, along its entirety, in anticipation of the Community Transit SWIFT BRT (Gold Line) in 2027. 

The City of Arlington Comprehensive Plan was initially completed in 1995, with periodic updates being conducted as required by RCW 36.70A.130., but never really changing the foundational principles of the original plan, which was primarily low-density residential development, no plan for economic development to occur or be sustained, and no realistic plan for expansion of the Urban Growth Area (UGA). The Puget Sound Region has changed dramatically, even since Arlington’s 2015 Comprehensive Plan update, and the basis upon which that plan was developed is in conflict with how the City needs to evaluate and manage the inevitable changes that we will face. City staff and planning commission have started the process to preliminarily revise the Comprehensive Plan with a new framework, updated foundational principles, goals and policies to address the City’s future with reasonable predictability.

This Comprehensive Plan will provide strategies to encourage, create, and support equity among all aspects of life, place making, neighborhood connectivity, economic stability and vibrancy, resilience and sustainability, quality, diverse and efficient residential growth, recreational/park opportunities, for the protection of the quality of life for the City of Arlington’s residents and businesses.

Additional Information:

Washington, By and By - A Community Planning Graphic Novel


Your Voice Matters! As part of the first stage of the comprehensive planning process, the City would like to get the community’s input—what people love and what they would like to see improved in their town. We want to hear from YOU!

Provide Feedback! 
Complete our SUBAREA  SURVEY and provide information about various aspects of your neighborhood. 

Submit Comments: .

Stay Tuned! Check this webpage for project updates

Open House Presentations:
April 27, 2023

July 8, 2023 at the Street Fair

November 7th, 2023 - SEPA Scoping Public Meeting


The City of Arlington has determined that it will prepare a Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the 2024-2044 Comprehensive Plan, currently in development. The City will conduct formal “scoping” to gather input and comments on key issues related to the Comprehensive Plan from November 1 through November 30, 2023.  Scoping is conducted under the State Environmental Policy Act to help identify the elements of the environment to be evaluated in an Environmental Impact Statement and to help identify and narrow the range of issues that are significant to be studied. 

The purpose of scoping for the Environmental Impact Statement is to: 

  • Provide an early outreach opportunity for environmental review. 
  • Identify the elements that will be evaluated in the Environmental Impact Statement. 
  • Narrow the issues to those that are significant. 
  • Provide a public comment period so that the public and other agencies can comment on key issues and concerns. 

Following the November 1 – November 30 comment period the City will consider all comments received and determine the scope of review for the environmental analysis. 

 The public, interested agency representatives, and tribes are invited to attend a public meeting during the scoping period on Tuesday, November 7, 2023, from 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm at Arlington City Council Chambers, 110 E Third Street, Arlington, WA 98223. The public is invited to submit comments by 5:00 pm on November 7, 2023 to Marc Hayes, Community and Economic Development Manager at and/or to attend the public scoping meeting on November 7, 2023.


The process for updating the Arlington Comprehensive Plan will include four key stages of work and related public engagement:

  • Review Background and Confirm Vision (through the end of 2022)
  • Develop Policy Framework and Planning Scenarios (end of 2022 through mid-2023)
  • Compile Draft Comprehensive Plan and Complete Environmental Review (through end of 2023)
  • Finalize and adopt the Comprehensive Plan (through third quarter of 2024)
planning image 2022