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How to Reach Us

Public Counter Hours at 919  Palm Street are Monday through Friday,
8 a.m. to noon
, and 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.

Other City department services will continue to be available during regular business hours,
Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

  • Planning and zoning information (805) 781-7170.
  • Building and safety information (including requests for inspection) (805) 781-7180.
  • Department FAX (805) 781-7173.
  • TTY for hearing- or voice-impaired customers (805) 781-7410.

About Us
The San Luis Obispo Community Development Department plays a key role in shaping the future of urban development in San Luis Obispo. The Planning and Building divisions develop guiding policies in the City's General Plan, and review new construction through zoning, building permits, subdivision regulations, code enforcement and community design guidelines. Under the direction of the Community Development Director, who is appointed by and is responsible to the City Manager, the Community Development Department serves San Luis Obispo residents directly at the public counter, and indirectly by guiding the City's urban form from concept to construction. The divisions within the department include Long-Range Planning, Development Review and Building and Safety.

An organizational chart of the department can be accessed here.

Mission Statement
Our mission is to serve all persons in a positive and courteous manner and help ensure that San Luis Obispo continues to be a healthy, safe, attractive, and enjoyable place to live, work, or visit. We help plan the City's form and character, support community values, preserve the environment, promote the wise use of resources, and protect public health and safety.

Service Philosophy
The City of San Luis Obispo Community Development Department staff provides high quality service when you need it. We will:

  • Listen to understand your needs
  • Give clear, accurate and prompt answers to your questions
  • Explain how you can achieve your goals under the City's rules
  • Help resolve problems in an open, objective manner
  • Maintain high ethical standards
  • Work to improve our service

Community planning involves the complex interaction of individuals, neighborhood groups, business organizations, environmental groups, other advocacy groups, land developers, and contractors with appointed and elected City officials and the staff. The elected five member City Council appoints people to serve on the Planning Commission, Architectural Review Commission, Cultural Heritage Committee, Handicapped Board of Appeals, and the Construction Board of Appeals. These groups help oversee various parts of the planning and construction programs and provide an important means for citizen participation in city government. The Community Development Department staff are employees that work with the City Council and appointed citizen groups to administer the planning and building programs.


What's New



New Post Construction Stormwater Program

On July 12, 2013 the Central Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board adopted Post Construction Requirements (PCR) for development and re-development projects. These requirements will be implemented by all agencies in the Region, effective March 6, 2014.


Land Use and Circulation Elements (LUCE) Update
The City received $880,000 in State grant funds to update the City's Land Use and Circulation Elements. These elements of the General Plan comprise the  “blueprint” for the future of the City: the Land Use Element describes the location and intensity of uses -housing, businesses, industry, open space - and the Circulation Element defines how people, products and visitors move about the community. 

Together these elements plan for the physical development of the City based upon the expected population growth and commercial and industrial development, while ensuring the protection of the City's special assets and natural resources. A comprehensive community outreach will be included as part of this effort. The update will focus on healthy communities and promotion of energy efficiency and conservation.  For more information please visit the project website at For questions, please contact Kim Murry, Community Development Department, at 781-7274 or



2012 General Plan Annual Report New!

Each year, the City publishes an Annual Report on the status of its General Plan and provides an overview of actions taken to implement the Plan during the previous year. Contact James David,, with questions or comments.


Historic Context Statement to be prepared...


The Cultural Heritage Committee is in the process of working with a consultant (Historic Resources Group of Pasadena) to prepare a historic context statement. Links to the web page are here: Historic Context Statement . Efforts are also continuing to finalize an ongoing historic resources inventory that was started in 2011. The City Council approved the inventory update in December 2012. The preliminary results of the survey can be found here: Historic Resource Inventory







On Tuesday, July 17, 2012, the Council adopted a Climate Action Plan for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The Climate Action Plan is a strategic document, rooted in the idea that effective global solutions for climate change will largely be the result of collective action of local communities and governments.

To review the adopted Climate Action Plan, download the following pdf: SLO CAP.


Visit to learn about our path towards being a more sustainable community! Please contact James David at 805.781.7576 or for questions or to find out how you can be involved in implementation of this community-based action plan.



New Public Counter Hours for the Community Development Department and Public Works Department Offices – 919 Palm Street. Effective October 4, 2010, the Community Development Department's and Public Works Department's public counter are open Monday through Friday, 8 am to noon, and 1 pm to 3 pm.

The change in public counter hours is an effort to maintain a high level of customer service at the public counter while experiencing staffing reductions. During the times the counter is closed, the Building Inspection Hotline will still be available to accept inspection requests. Phones will remain open where they connect directly to a staff member. Individuals can still schedule meetings with city staff during the times the offices are closed. Public Works and Building Inspectors will still be available for inspections during the time the offices are closed.


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