Housing development, racial justice, climate change, and wildfire mitigation are some of the major changes to the general plan of Los Gatos.

The draft Master Plan 2040 update, which was approved by the planning commission last month, will serve as the framework or constitution for the city for the next 20 years, covering issues such as affordable housing, diversity , equity and inclusion and transportation.

Although these changes have taken years to make, some, such as updates to housing types and densities, cause discomfort,

The council held a special meeting on Monday evening to give its opinion on the plan and is expected to take a final vote on June 30.

The most significant changes to the plan include a new element of racial, social and environmental justice and land use changes to stimulate mixed-use development in commercial areas. Staff also shifted the focus of transportation policies and street design to support bicycles and pedestrians as well as motor vehicles to reduce vehicle miles travelled.

“The draft 2040 master plan is just a draft, even at this point where we’ve had lengthy discussions,” planning manager Jennifer Armer said. “The planning commission even recommended additional changes and modifications. The municipal council may consider whether to accept these changes in whole or in part and may include other changes or new changes in its decision.

The general plan includes plans for residential and commercial development, including 3,280 homes to be built by 2040.

Staff’s strategy to achieve these housing goals is to focus on medium-density, mixed-use developments like apartments with ground floor restaurants, grocery stores and cafes to encourage walking.

The general plan is separate from the housing element, in which the city must plan to build 1,993 housing units over the next eight years.

A handful of residents expressed concerns during public comments about high-density, mixed-use housing development projects, particularly near mountains and high wildfire risk areas.

Longtime Los Gatos resident Rob Stump spoke out against increasing residential density that would give the green light to building more homes in a smaller area.

“A blanket zoning approach is not prudent from a public safety perspective,” Stump said, noting that nearly 3,100 homes in Los Gatos are located in the wilderness urban interface (WUI). “This whole area and even areas outside of WUI are living with the threat of wildfire. If increased housing densities are approved in the WUI, there could be catastrophic impacts for residents.

The city council reviewed the planning commission’s recommended changes to the general plan before council members proposed their own.

The Master Plan Advisory Committee has held 35 meetings over the past two and a half years to create an updated master plan. The council meets again on June 30 for another special meeting to finalize the general plan.

“I think we’ve done a lot of good work, but there’s still a lot to do,” Mayor Rob Rennie said.