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City Planning Department

Impact Fees

Front area outside the Rancho Peñasquitos Library

Rancho Peñasquitos Library

San Diego Municipal Code §142.0640 provides for the assessment and administration of development impact fees. The purpose of assessing development impact fees is to implement the City’s General Plan which contains policies related to the maintenance of an effective facilities financing program to ensure the impact of new development is mitigated through appropriate fees. Properties and land being developed in the City of San Diego are assessed a fee for public facilities. The fee is determined by the type, size and location of the development in accordance with the adopted nexus studies for Parks, Mobility, Library and Fire for the building permit being issued. 

The Fee Schedule can be found here

Citywide Development Impact Fees

With the adoption of Parks for All of Us and Build Better SD, all new development within the City of San Diego is assessed for development impact fees based on the resolutions adopted for Citywide DIF for Parks, Mobility, Fire and Libraries. Development Impact Fees are now assessed on a citywide basis and deposited into citywide DIF accounts based on asset types of Parks, Fire, Library and Mobility. The projects proposed in the Mobility Nexus study include roadway improvements, bicycle facilities, traffic signals, roundabouts, sidewalks, curb ramps, and ITS improvements. The Mobility Nexus focuses on key goals such as developing walkable communities, prioritizing transit, optimizing street and freeway systems, incorporating intelligent transportation systems, managing transportation demand, enhancing bicycling infrastructure, and planning for future mobility needs. The Nexus Studies for Parks, Libraries, and Fire-Rescue analyze existing levels of service and conditions against current standards to determine future facility needs.

To determine a project’s Citywide Park, Fire-Rescue, Library, and Mobility DIF, enter the project’s assessor parcel number and development information into the Citywide DIF Calculator. Download the Citywide DIF Calculator below to obtain an estimate for the DIF fees. Projects with an application fee date before July 1,2023, will be offered the community DIF or Citywide DIF whichever is lower at the time of payment of the fees. 

Citywide DIF Calculator

Active Transportation in Lieu Fee (ATILF)

This fee is required for residential and non-residential development projects located in Mobility Zone 4 and is due at final inspection.

The current Active Transportation in Lieu Fee is $1,769.11 per excess Vehicle Mile Traveled for residential and non-residential development projects.

To find a project Mobility Zone location, or if a project is eligible for the Active Transportation in Lieu Fee, enter the project’s assessor parcel number in the Active Transportation in Lieu Fee calculator.

For more information refer to the Complete Community: Mobility Choice Program.

Regional Transportation Congestion Improvement Program Fees (RTCIP)

This fee is applicable only on new residential development. On-site affordable (low income) units may be exempt from the RTCIP fee. The fees were established to ensure that new development directly invests in the region's transportation system to offset the negative impact of growth on congestion and mobility. To learn more about the City of San Diego RTCIP Funding Program, review the latest adopted program.

Housing Impact Fees (HIF)

This fee is collected for non-residential development and is due at final inspection. This fee is deposited into the San Diego Housing Trust Fund to meet, in part, affordable housing needs in San Diego. To learn more about payment of Housing Impact Fees, review Municipal Code Section 98.0610.

School Impact Fees

School Impact Fees are based on the assessable space for residential, commercial, industrial, mixed residential and commercial, and residential care for the elderly. To calculate the fee the developers must obtain a City of San Diego Approval Report, which documents the chargeable square footage. This report can be printed from the Permit online by logging into your Online Permitting Account, where the chargeable square footage breakdown for residential and non-residential spaces is displayed. Once fees are determined, developers can pay fees to the applicable San Diego Unified School District using the online payment site. For assistance with user accounts or obtaining the Approval Report, developers can contact 619-446-5000. Once the school fees are paid, developers need to obtain a receipt or Certificate of Compliance from the respective school district and digitally upload this document to their Online Permitting Account at the time of Permit Issuance. Additional information can be found in Information Bulletin 146

Civic Enhancement Allocation

The Public Spaces Division collects a Civic Enhancement allocation fee on behalf of, and as determined by the City's Commission for Arts and Culture. Non-residential development with a permit value of $9.43 million or more may be subject to this fee. To learn more about the Civic Enhancement allocation, contact the Commission for Arts and Culture.

Please be sure to visit the Development Services website for additional fees that may also apply.

Reimbursement and Development Agreements

Reimbursement Agreements are contracts between the City and developer allowing for reimbursement for portion or all costs encumbered for public improvements provided by the developer. Some examples of eligible public improvements for reimbursement using development impact fees are streets and active transportation facilities in accordance with the mobility nexus studies, parks, libraries, and fire and police stations in accordance with the citywide DIF nexus studies and the Public Facilities Financing plans. This work performed can be reimbursed in the form of credits to be utilized on existing or future improvements or with cash.

A Development Agreement is a formal contract between the City and a developer outlining the terms of a proposed development project. These agreements establish parameters such as permitted land uses, infrastructure requirements, and public benefits. Crucially, fees and financial arrangements can be negotiated between the developer and the city, providing flexibility in determining the financial obligations associated with the project based on the public benefits that are being provided. By allowing for tailored fee structures, development agreements enable collaborative decision-making that aligns with the goals of all parties while fostering responsible and sustainable development. Most often fees or credits established are only to be utilized within the defined development.

By exploring these options, developers can potentially reduce the financial burden associated with development in San Diego while still contributing to the city's growth and infrastructure needs.

To learn more about reimbursement agreements or development agreements and their benefits, refer to the City of San Diego's guidance on reimbursement agreements.

Onsite Park Improvement

Per Resolution R-313688 which was passed adopting a new Citywide Park DIF, a developer may provide onsite parks, or offsite parks located in a Community of Concern (a neighborhood having a CEI of very low, low or moderate), and in exchange can receive up to 90% reduction in their Citywide Park DIF. The park must meet park standards identified in the Parks Master Plan for the project and must follow all general development plan processes in accordance with Council Policy 600-33 and meet the City's standards for the design and construction of parks.

For more information regarding the process for providing an onsite park improvement in lieu of the Citywide Parks DIF, please email