Helena Forward Land Use Plan


In partnership with the team at Houseal-Lavigne, the City of Helena is embarking on a 1 1/2 year planning project we are calling "Helena Forward." With the passage of SB 382, the Montana Land Use Planning Act (MLUPA) in May 2023, what was known as a Growth Policy (under the Montana Subdivision and Platting Act) has been retitled and retooled as a Land Use Plan. MLUPA supersedes the requirements of the previous act and sets forth new required components of a comprehensive plan for jurisdictions of a certain size in Montana, such as Helena.

The citizens of Helena, as well as all of our partners and stakeholders, will have numerous opportunities to give input during the creation of Helena Forward. This page will be continually updated and refreshed, and we hope you will come back here often to participate in the many public engagement opportunities, keep up  on our progress, and review material and drafts relative to the planning process.

Helena Forward is a once in a decade opportunity to help shape the future of the City of Helena - providing opportunities and leaving a legacy for future generations.



Land Use Plan Kick-Off Meeting

The Planning Commission will be holding a meeting on Wednesday, June 5, 2024 at 7:00 PM in Commission Chambers and online via Zoom, to kick-off the Land Use Plan process. The Mayor, City Commission, and members of the Helena Citizens Council have been invited to attend this meeting. The agenda can be found here(PDF, 182KB) . Additional meeting details, including the Zoom link, can be found here.

Engagement Opportunities

The team at Houseal Lavigne has created and is hosting a Helena Forward project and public engagement site with information about the Helena Forward Plan, news and updates on the planning process, public engagement and community meeting opportunities, project documents as the plan progresses, and a way to send us feedback and plan input.

Please follow this link to the Helena Forward Project site…https://hla.fyi/HelenaLandUsePlan

Helena Business Community Workshop

Date: June 4th, 2024

Time: 7:30 A.M

Location: The Helena Area of Chamber of Commerce (225 N Cruse Ave Ste A, Helena, MT 59601)

The City is hosting a Business Workshop to introduce the planning process and gain insight into specific concerns facing the business community that must be addressed by the Land Use Plan. This is your opportunity to tell us what you think, before plans and recommendations are crafted.

All business owners and operators are encouraged to attend! Come prepared to: 1) identify specific issues and opportunities facing the business community; 2) build consensus on the long-term character and composition of businesses in Helena; and 3) identify projects and improvements that will have a positive long-term impact on local businesses and entrepreneurship in Helena.

We hope to see you there!

Community Stakeholder Interviews

Date: June 4th-5th, 2024

Time:2:00PM-5:00PM and 10:00AM-5:00PM

Location: Helena College, University of Montana (Donaldson Campus, 1115 N Roberts St, Helena, MT 59601)

The City is hosting Community Stakeholder Interviews to gain insight into specific concerns facing various communities that must be addressed by the Land Use Plan. This is your opportunity to tell us what you think, before plans and recommendations are crafted. These interviews will start on Tuesday, June 4th and conclude on Wednesday, June 5th.



2025 Land Use Plan Conversion

The City of Helena is currently seeking proposals from qualified consultants to provide professional services for the review and conversion of the 2019 City of Helena Growth Policy into a Land Use Plan (LUP) in alignment with the Montana Land Use Planning Act (MLUPA) established during the 2023 Montana Legislative Session with passage of Montana Senate Bill 382. This will entail a general review and, where necessary, updates to elements of the Growth Policy, and, as part of the document conversion, introduction of newly required elements or statistical information, inclusive of future population and housing need projections for a defined 20-year period.

The selected consultant will work in close collaboration with City of Helena staff on this effort. The specific scope of work and deliverables expected are discussed in detail within the full RFP and will include holding and facilitating several public hearings and additional meetings as necessary, per the City of Helena and Montana law.

View full RFP here.(PDF, 442KB)