The comprehensive plan is a policy document that describes the community's long-term vision for unincorporated Thurston County (areas outside of the cities). It contains goals and policies that guide growth and development, including zoning and development regulations, and addresses requirements of the state Growth Management Act. The Comprehensive Plan also includes specific guidelines for the subareas of Grand Mound, Rochester and Nisqually, as well as Joint Plans for the Urban Growth Areas (UGAs) of Lacey, Olympia, Rainier, Tenino, Tumwater, and Yelm.
Citizens may propose amendments to the plan that are reviewed on an annual cycle. Currently, the plan is being updated to comply with new state laws, and to account for population growth through the year 2040.