California State Government Code §65300, requires that every city adopt a General Plan, sometimes referred to as a City’s blueprint for growth and development. Santa Barbara’s General Plan originally adopted in 1964 is comprised of eight elements, seven of which are mandated by state law.
In December 2011, the City Council adopted the Plan Santa Barbara General Plan update. This process resulted in a new General Plan Introductory Framework, comprehensively updated Land Use and Housing Elements, and a new set of goals and policies for the remaining elements. The 2011 General Plan update reorganizes the elements, consistent with the Introductory Framework for Sustainability (and state law), and compiles the six previous volumes into one document.
*Mandated by state law
The following includes the Certified Final Program Environmental Impact Report (EIR) for the Plan Santa Barbara General Plan Update and Addenda.
Over the next few years the City will be carrying out many of the goals and policies of the 2011 General Plan Update through various implementation programs. To see current Long Range programs, ordinances, or other element updates being developed as part of the General Plan Update click on City of Santa Barbara - Major Planning Efforts in Santa Barbara.
For more information on the General Plan or the implementation efforts contact Dan Gullett in the City Planning Division by email (DGullett@SantaBarbaraCA.gov) or telephone (805) 564-5470, ext. 2569.
The California Coastal Act of 1976 (Coastal Act) establishes goals and provisions for a designated Coastal Zone along the entire California coastline. Within the City of Santa Barbara, the Coastal Zone generally extends inland half a mile from the ocean and includes about six miles of the City’s shoreline. Approximately 70% of the City’s Coastal Zone is held in public ownership, including numerous beaches and parks, an extensive public waterfront, and a full working harbor.
Development in the Coastal Zone is reviewed for compliance with the City’s Local Coastal Program and the Coastal Act.
In August, 2019, the California Coastal Commission (CCC) certified the City's updated Coastal LUP. For the most part, the updated Coastal LUP carries forward policies that already exist in other City planning documents and regulations. New policies document the criteria and interpretations being used today for the review and approval of Coastal Development Permits, clarify development standards for traditionally complicated topics such as development near coastal bluffs and creeks, and address emerging issues for the City. Click Here for more information on the Coastal LUP update process.