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Comprehensive Master Plan
Following decades of substantial growth, the Town Board of Commissioners identified a need for a vision to better manage population growth, local economic development, and land use. Cornelius had participated in long-range planning processes in the past; however the growth of the town and the many changes that occurred created the need for a new plan moving forward. In 2010, the process to create the Comprehensive Master Plan began.  NOTE: Many of the documents below are large and may take a few minutes to load. 
Comprehensive Master Plan
The objectives of the Comprehensive Master Plan were to:
  1. Create a document that takes general goals and principles regarding the future of Cornelius and develop them into a “living” strategic implementation plan.
  2. Develop a basis for annual budgetary requests and create a tool to evaluate new development projects.
  3. Form a framework for infrastructure planning.
  4. Develop initiatives or action items from which to evaluate regional implications of growth projects.

CMP Documents
  1. Original document - accepted 6/18/12
  2. Revised document - accepted 11/19/12

Comprehensive Master Plan Supporting Documents

Phase 1- Kickoff Summary

Phase 2 - Learn Summary
Phase 3 - Dream Summary (Development Framework)

Phase 4 - Plan Summary (Community Recommendations)
Summary Presentation
Comprehensive Index of Approved & Accepted Cornelius Plans, Maps and Documents
Land Use
On January 6, 2014 the Town of Cornelius Board of Commissioners adopted changes to the Land Use Plan. The Plan, originally adopted in December 1999, manages the way land may be used in the town's jurisdiction. View the Land Use Map and corresponding land use categories for more information.

In 1996 the town adopted the Land Development Code (LDC) to regulate the zoning of land in the town's jurisdiction which affects how the land may be developed (see also the LDC Map).

Small Area Plans
The purpose of small area plans is to address concerns or issues in a section of the town.  Over the years, the town adopted a number of small area plans:

Mecklenburg-Union Metropolitan Planning Organization (MUMPO) developed a Comprehensive Transportation Plan (CTP) - North Carolina’s multi-modal transportation plan for the area including Cornelius. The CTP includes community consensus on future transportation needs required to support anticipated growth and development, including highways, public transportation, rail, and bicycle facilities needed to serve the anticipated travel demand.

The Town of Cornelius adopted the Centennial Transportation Plan in 2005. This document laid the framework for transportation needs in the town. In the years since the adoption of the plan, transportation needs have changed due to the growth in the area resulting in additional studies and plans:

  • UPWP Connectivity Study - In 2007 the Town Board adopted portions of this study to improve connectivity: Highway 21 connector which included Smith Circle Connector (Alt 1), South Hill Street Extension and School Loop; Holiday Lane to Ferry Street Connector.
  • The Northcross Drive Extension can be seen on MUMPO's 2009-2015 Transportation Improvement Program projects map.
  • In addition to the pending Exit 28 plan, the town and NCDOT will be constructing the first Diverging Diamond Interchange in North Carolina.  You can view the DDI Exhibit and the proposed aesthetic design by Ratio Design. Read the latest construction update.
  • Rail has been a topic of conversation for years in the North Mecklenburg community. You can find the latest information on the RedLine Regional Rail website, including an interactive map illustrating proposed Special Assessment Districts (SAD). View the Cornelius Rail Task Force recommendations.
  • Cornelius wants citizens to have a choice when it comes to transportation - including a safe and inviting pedestrian network that connects to places of interest; a place where walking contributes to a healthy lifestyle; and a place where families can thrive and visitors can enjoy all that Cornelius has to offer. The Pedestrian Plan documents how this may be accomplished.

Regardless of the transportation method chosen, Wayfinding Signage will help you find what you need.

Quality of Life
Several plans have been adopted by the town and/or county to maintain and improve the quality of life of Cornelius residents:

Other Town Documents
Police Dept. 
Dept. Audits


Miscellaneous Documents