Simply put, the purpose of planning is to make better decisions. Often, planning is too hastily associated with strict regulation, and is deemed as a governmental intrusion into the everyday lives of the citizens of the County. At its most basic level, and in its most successful form, planning is a process through which, a neighborhood, community, city or county may assess its past progress and present situation, in order to better gather information and formulate strategies for positive growth and success in the future. Although many planning efforts are initiated from a governmental body, true success lies in grassroots efforts, involving community members and stakeholders to represent citizen interests in looking to the future so that a community can guide growth and development instead of allowing development to go unchecked, and rob a community or county of its identity. The Ashe County Planning Department wishes to utilize this “bottom up” style of planning initiative. It is our hope that through public participation, the establishment of plans and strategies for future development can be formulated and implemented with the support and understanding of the County’s citizens. If you have any questions or concerns regarding Ashe County’s planning program, please do not hesitate to contact us.