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Planning Department

  • Design & Historic Preservation

  • Design Review

    The Pasadena Municipal Code requires design review of new construction and alterations throughout the City. To determine if a project will require design review, please review the thresholds listed in the zoning code pdf. The map below illustrates the areas of the city where design review may be required. In addition to the specific thresholds for these areas, all multi-family development projects consisting of 3 or more total units and any new building over 5,000 square feet in size citywide require design review. Depending on the size of the project, design review may be conducted by city staff or at a public hearing before the Design Commission, a group of nine citizens appointed by the Mayor & City Council.


     Click for larger image - Design Review Map 
     

    The Citywide Design Principles support high quality building design in Pasadena. Detailed design guidelines have been adopted for various areas of the city to assist architects, developers, city staff, the Design Commission and the public understand how to achieve high quality building designs. Visit our design guidelines page to view and download the guidelines that apply to each area of the city.

    Application forms and submittal requirements for design review may be found below. 
     

    Design Review Application Forms

     Application/Form

     Instructions

     Design review application form   Complete this application for all applications for design review  
     Environmental assessment form  Complete this form for all applications for design review that involve construction of new buildings.
     Public notification packet   Use this packet as a guide to preparing mailing labels, radius maps and notice posters for projects that require a public hearing before the Design Commission (use the link above to view the thresholds that apply to Design Commission review).
     Preliminary Consultation submittal requirements    Applications for design review that involve new construction or major alterations to existing buildings are required to go through a preliminary consultation process to obtain comments on the proposed design concept prior to preparing detailed drawings for the formal decision-making phases of Design Review. These submittal requirements list the elements of a complete Preliminary Consultation submittal.
     3D Digital Model Submittal Requirement   Applications for design review that require Design Commission review must include a 3D digital model of the proposed new building. This document describes how the city will use 3D models that are submitted with applications for design review and other entitlements. Applicants are required to sign the document and submit it with their application. Acceptable file formats for 3D models are listed in the design review submittal requirements, which can be accessed below.
     Concept Design Review submittal requirements    These submittal requirements list the elements of a complete Concept Design Review submittal
     Final Design Review submittal requirements    These submittal requirements list the elements of a complete Final Design Review submittal

    Consolidated Design Review submittal requirements:

     
    Projects that are minor or that have extensive design requirements in the Zoning Code may, at the discretion of city staff, go through a single phase of formal design review. These submittal requirements list the elements of a complete Consolidated Design Review submittal, where authorized by staff.
    Design guidelines  Use this link to learn about, view and download the design guidelines that apply to various areas of the city.