County of Marin - News Releases - Black Point Community Plan

For Immediate Release
January 09, 2015

Workshop on Black Point Plan Set for January 26

Update of 1978 document to be completed by this spring, planners say

San Rafael, CA – Residents of the unincorporated Black Point area of Novato and other interested citizens are invited to a public workshop and roundtable discussion January 26 about the neighborhood’s Draft Community Plan.

A view of the marshlands of Black Point, with the Petaluma River on the left and the hilly neighborhood on the rightThe event, hosted by the Marin County Planning Commission and Black Point Advisory Committee, is to start at 6 p.m. at the Manzanita Room inside Marin Center, 10 Avenue of the Flags, San Rafael.

The meeting will provide an informal chance for residents to share input on key issues of the draft plan for Black Point, an unincorporated community located along the banks of the Petaluma River in the northeast section of Novato. Residents describe their community as quiet, peaceful, unique, spacious, rural and beautiful.

The plan, scheduled for completion in spring 2015, is designed to preserve the community’s unique assets while providing reasonable standards for new development. An update of the 1978 plan began in early 2013 with collaboration between the community advisory committee, County planning staff and members of the community. In addition to monthly advisory committee meetings, residents provided feedback at public workshops in August 2013 and June 2014. The Novato Fire District, Marin County Parks, Marin County Department of Public Works, and other groups also reviewed the plan and shared information with residents.

The plan refines existing policies and addresses new issues identified through the public engagement process. Concerns about home size, particularly in relationship to lot size, were raised as a potential threat to the area’s semi-rural character as new development mixes in with smaller, older, and more traditional homes. A discussion has taken place about policy options for preserving community character, road maintenance, building setbacks, night skies, sudden oak death, and sea-level rise.

The draft version includes language to maintain the community’s unincorporated status and it supports the continuation of septic systems as the primary means of waste disposal. Protecting natural assets, including wildlife habitat and movement corridors, is considered essential to maintaining a high quality of life in the community.

Another public workshop to unveil the draft and discuss key issues is scheduled for 7 p.m. Thursday, March 5 at the Novato City Hall Council Chambers, 901 Sherman Ave. In the spring, the Marin County Planning Commission will discuss the plan’s merits, and it is anticipated that the Marin County Board of Supervisors would consider adopting the plan shortly thereafter.

The planning staff emphasizes that the Draft Black Point Community Plan update is still a working document, and further input will help ensure the plan reflects community values and protects the unique character of Black Point.

For more information, contact Senior Planner Kristin Drumm at or 415-473-6290.


Kristin Drumm
Senior Planner
Community Development Agency

3501 Civic Center Drive
Suite 318
San Rafael, CA 94903
(415) 473-6290
Email: Kristin Drumm
Community Development website