Comprehensive Plan

Updated October 21, 2021

Burien's first Comprehensive Plan was adopted in November 1997 following months of town meetings, workshops, and public hearings. The plan has been amended several times since then, most recently in 2021.

The plan is based on the Burien Vision, an expression by the community of what the community should be in 20 years. The plan also reflects the goals and guidelines of Washington's 1990 Growth Management Act.

Plan Concepts

The plan has several major concepts, summarized as follows:

  • Creation of a sustainable community (a community that is socially, economically, and environmentally healthy).
  • Reinforcing Burien's small-town character and sustaining the character of existing neighborhoods.
  • Creating a thriving, yet pedestrian friendly downtown.
  • Using design guidelines to create a unifying visual environment throughout Burien.
  • Accommodating Burien's share of expected countywide growth (both in new housing units and job creation).
  • Providing public facilities and services within the City's financial resources.

Annual Amendment Request Process

Burien amends its Comprehensive Plan annually. Requests for amendments must be submitted to the Community Development Department by November 1. The list of amendments that will be considered is established by the City Council by February 1 following a recommendation from the Planning Commission.

City Council adopted the 2021 Comprehensive Plan amendments on October 18, 2021. The 2021 Comprehensive Plan amendments include the following updates to the Comprehensive Plan.

  • Incorporate the 2021 Housing Action Plan by reference and amend Housing Element policy as recommended by the Housing Action Plan
  • Establish a minimum density policy to avoid underdevelopment of land resulting in reduced housing and jobs capacity
  • Create goals and policies directing the City to prioritize race and social equity in policies, practices, and actions
  • Incorporate the Green Burien Partnership Urban Forest Stewardship Plan by reference and strengthen goals and policies related to Burien’s urban forest consistent with that plan

Plan Chapters