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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 for the building permit being issued. Monies collected are placed in a City special fund by community, to be used solely for those public facilities specifically defined or generally described in the Development Impact Fee Plan for each community.

Development Impact Fees (DIF)

Development Impact Fees (DIF) are assessed throughout the city employing two types of methodologies; Facilities Benefit Assessment (FBA) and DIF. A Development Impact Fee in an FBA community historically has typically provided 100% of funds for public facilities projects within that community and are identified in a Public Facilities Financing Plan (PFFP). The dollar amount of the DIF is based upon the cost of each public facility equitably distributed over the remaining development in the community planning area.

In urbanized communities which are near buildout, as defined in the City’s General Plan, Development Impact Fees are collected to mitigate the impact of new development through provisions of a portion of the financing needed for public facilities identified in the Impact Fee Study, and to maintain existing levels of service for that community. Upon determination of the community buildout population, the estimated cost to construct the facilities is divided amongst residential and nonresidential development.

Development Impact Fees are one-time payments that are generally due at final inspection. To learn more about payment of DIF, review Municipal Code Section 142.0640. The General Plan – Public Facilities, Services and Safety Element contains a map displaying Community Planning Areas by Financing Type (FBA and DIF). The City of San Diego’s Trip Generation Manual provides vehicle trip rates for purposes of calculating development impact fees.

The Fee Schedule can be found here.

Citywide Development Impact Fees

Effective October 21, 2022, three new Citywide DIFs for Fire-Rescue, Library, and Mobility were updated to replace the community specific DIFs.

  • Citywide Fire-Rescue DIF, replacing the Fire-Rescue component of Community Planning Area-based DIFs, will be applied to residential and non-residential developments at final inspection except in the instance where the Citywide Fire-Rescue DIF would result in an increase from any other applicable fire-rescue component of a DIF until June 30, 2023.
  • Citywide Library DIF, replacing the library component of Community Planning Area-based DIFs, will be applied to residential and non-residential developments at final inspection except in the instance where the Citywide Fire-Rescue DIF would result in an increase from any other applicable fire-rescue component of a DIF until June 30, 2023.
  • Citywide Mobility DIF, replacing the transportation component of Community Planning Area-based DIFs, will be applied to residential and non-residential developments at final inspection except in the instance where the Citywide Fire-Rescue DIF would result in an increase from any other applicable fire-rescue component of a DIF until June 30, 2023.

On October 12, 2021, the Community Based Park DIFs were updated to incorporate the Citywide Park DIF. This fee is applied to residential developments at final inspection except in the instance where the Citywide Park DIF would result in an increase from any other applicable park component of a DIF until June 30, 2022.

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.

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 $1,400 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

For information on School Impact Fees in the San Diego Unified School District area, please visit the San Diego Unified School District website or call 619-278-6720.

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 $8 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.