San Diego

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3. Discretionary Review

Does your project require special approvals prior to applying for a construction permit?
If not, go to Step 4: Plan Review.

  • Overview - This process is called discretionary because a special permit or approval may be needed and would be granted at the discretion of a decision maker.

    This special permit or approval may be needed for a number of reasons. For example, the project as proposed may be deviating from Land Development Code regulations (e.g., it may not meet setback requirements or may exceed density limits). The project may potentially impact environmentally sensitive lands or the project may involve the subdivision of property.

    Discretionary Review is a higher level review of the proposed property use and architectural and design plans. The decision maker must be able to make certain findings and may exercise discretion in granting approval of your project. See more information about the various key areas below. At the beginning of the discretionary review process, the City will assign you a single point of contact called a Development Project Manager (DPM).

  • Key Areas - Includes the types of discretionary approvals, decision making process and a list of reviewing disciplines.
  • Project Submittal Requirements - Ensure that you submit all the required plans, studies, and other materials needed for a discretionary permit or approval.


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