San Diego

Updates to the Land Development Code

4th Update to the Land Development Code

At Feb. 9, 2006 the California Coastal Commission certified the Fourth Update to the Land Development Code. Three Ordinances are included: PDF icon O-2006-50 , PDF icon O-2006-50-a , and PDF icon O-2006-51 . The Fourth Update to the Land Development Code was initially adopted by the City Council on Nov. 22, 2004 (PDF icon Report to City Council 02-238 ), and was later amended by the Council on Nov. 28, 2005 in accordance with Coastal Commission’s suggested modifications. The Fourth Update includes seven policy issues, 17 consistency corrections, and 18 minor format and reference corrections that address changing development practices and improve implementation of City policy, with a specific focus in the areas of housing, environment, and permit process.

The reasonable accommodations amendments bring the City into compliance with federal and state Housing Acts to afford persons with disabilities the equal opportunity to use and enjoy a dwelling. The resulting housing will be beneficial to meet the needs of the City'’s growing population.

Several of the Fourth Update amendments will benefit the environment such as the residential open space zone category amendments which implement the protection of community open space and the emergency restoration amendments which regulate the timing for restoration plans.

Other approved amendments will improve the efficiency of permit processing. The Board of Zoning Appeals has been disbanded with its powers and duties transferred to the Planning Commission, processing of private encroachments in the public right-of-way has been standardized and simplified (PDF icon Information Bulletin 576), site reconnaissance and testing processes have been streamlinedPDF icon (Information Bulletin 560), and public linear trails and maintenance access projects have been exempted from some permit requirements at a cost savings to the public.

5th Update to the Land Development Code

The 5th Update to the Land Development Code (LDC) was presented to the City Council on Feb. 7, 2006, and adopted on Feb. 21, 2006 (PDF icon Issue Matrix). The project included 49 issues total subdivided into six categories including measurement, permit process, use, California Environmental Quality Act implementation, parking, and minor corrections. The 5th Update was a part of implementing the Mayor’s goals to simplify and clarify the development process and remove non-value added steps:

  • Updated outdoor lighting regulations to bring the LDC into compliance with state energy efficient standards and improve the regulations by clarifying the light source shielding requirement and providing alternatives for security lighting.
  • Revised the application and expiration requirements for construction permits to account for complexity of development projects.
  • Created a process to allow applicants to rescind a development permit that has been utilized (i.e. replace an existing use regulated by a Conditional Use Permit).
  • Amended agricultural zoning standards to retain traditional agricultural uses and limit nonagricultural uses in accordance with the San Pasqual Valley Vision Plan.
  • Included parking amendments to facilitate project design on narrow lots.
    Revised the self storage parking requirement to reflect the actual parking need for that type of use.

Three ordinances are associated:

  1. PDF icon O-2006-86 (19466) became effective March 2006 outside of the coastal overlay zone. The ordinance that includes deviations for the Sustainable Buildings Expedite Program is not effective in the coastal overlay zone. O-2006-86 will be submitted to the Coastal Commission for certification along with other housing amendments such as density bonus and affordable infill housing projects.
  2. PDF icon O-2006-87 (19467) became effective on Aug. 10, 2006, upon certification of the Local Coastal Program Amendment by the Coastal Commission.
  3. PDF icon O-2006-88 (19468) became effective March 2006, 30 days following Council approval.

6th Update to the Land Development Code

The 6th Update to the Land Development Code was approved by the City Council on Oct. 13, 2008, and certified by the Coastal Commission on June 11, 2009. A general description of each item approved in the 6th Update is included in the PDF icon issue matrix . (Note: Issue #34 “helicopter landing facilities” was withdrawn from the project prior to City Council approval.) The regulations became effective outside of the Coastal Overlay Zone on Dec. 13, 2008, and effective for areas in the coastal zone on June 11, 2009. Links to each approved ordinance (strikeout-underline format) are provided below:

7th Update to the Land Development Code

On Aug. 2, 2011, the City Council adopted the 7th Update which is a package of amendments that are being processed as part of a comprehensive update and regular maintenance of the code. The amendments are summarized in the PDF icon Issue Matrix . The code amendments include changes to address various steps in the permit process (i.e. applications, noticing, initiation, historic resource surveys, appeal of environmental determinations, findings for approval, grounds for appeal, bonds, permit expiration); items to help clarify and simplify the review process for various permit types
(i.e. planned development permits, pet care, signs, instructional studios, environmentally sensitive lands, companion units, parking structures, and previously conforming parking) and general clean up modifications to help clarify applicable development regulations and process requirements in the LDC and Planned District Ordinances. The ordinance became effective in areas outside of the coastal zone on October 6, 2011. On Oct. 10, 2013, the Coastal Commission approved final certification of the 7th Update ordinance (that included modifications related to Issue #9 Tolling and Issue #20 Environmentally Sensitive Lands required by the Coastal Commission on June 12, 2013). The 7th Update ordinance is effective citywide.

8th Update to the Land Development Code

On June 12, 2014, the Coastal Commission certified the 8th Update, a comprehensive update and regular maintenance of the code (adopted by the City Council June 4, 2013). There are a total of 54 amendment issues included in the 8th Update (after removal of Issue #15), that relate to various land use approval types and modify various use and development regulations. The most significant amendments will help streamline the permit approval process for PDF icon sidewalk cafés and educational facilities, and address various parking issues related to tandem parking, parking for commercial uses on small lots, shared parking, and green building parking requirements (for low emitting vehicles, carpools, and bicycles). The amendments are summarized in the Report to Planning Commission PDF icon Issue matrix . The 8th Update became effective in areas outside of the coastal zone on July 19, 2013, and became effective citywide on June 12, 2014. See final ordinances for the adopted code language:


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