DEPARTMENT CONTACT INFORMATION DURING COVID-19 EMERGENCY
City Hall, including the Permit Services Center, is currently closed to the public until August 31, 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. City Hall services continue to be provided via e-mail, online submittals, and telephone. We thank you for your patience and understanding.
Please use the following links to obtain contact information for where to best direct your questions and submittals related to the various divisions within the Community Development Department. As a courtesy to our customers and City staff, please keep your correspondence focused to only the group or person that your inquiry applies to. Doing so helps facilitate more efficient response times and allows us to serve a greater number of customers by avoiding redundant efforts by City staff.
R1 Development Standards Update
On October 22, 2019, the Santa Monica City Council approved changes to the development standards for the R1 zone district and associated sections of the Zoning Ordinance. The intent of the revisions was to address the size of new home construction, incentivize the retention of existing homes, and to make the standards more user-friendly. These new standards will become effective on January 1, 2020, subject to a second reading on November 12, 2019 by the City Council. More information regarding the update process and the adopted revisions can be found at the
R1 Update webpage
2019 Building Code Adoption
As part of the three-year Code update cycle, the Building and Fire Life Safety Commission will convene on August 14, 2019, to consider and recommend to City Council the local adoption of the 2019 California Building Standards Codes to become effective on January 1, 2020. The codes under consideration are the 2019 California Building, Residential, Electrical, Energy, Mechanical, Plumbing, Fire, Green Building, Historical, and Existing Building Standards Codes. Local amendments are also included as part of the Commission's consideration with the applicable findings and justifications, as required by State law.
Local amendments are required to be specific to each edition of State Building Codes. Therefore, as part of the adoption process for new building code editions every three years, the City must restate the existing local amendments to be retained and identify any new local amendments proposed, along with the applicable findings and justifications for each proposed amendment.
The local amendments and justifications proposed as part of this Code adoption cycle are available prior to the Commission meeting at the public counter in the Permit Services Center of City Hall (Room 111), or can be viewed electronically here.
If you have any questions you can reach Building and Safety at 310.458.8355, or by email at email@example.com
New Tool to look up Zoning Now Available!
If you need help looking up where you can locate your
business in Santa Monica, a new user-friendly tool is now available!
and find out your zoning today.
Interim Demolition Review Process for Buildings Over 40 Years
On July 14, 2020, City Council authorized updates to the
demolition permit review process for structures over 40 years old consistent
with restructuring of the City’s historic preservation program included in
Council’s adoption of the FY2020-21 budget. The Landmarks Commission will
not be conducting preliminary review of demolition permits, but any person may
still file an application to designate a building or structure as a City
Landmark or Structure of Merit. Council’s action also restarts the demolition
application waiting period as of July 14, 2020. A full posting of pending
demolition review permits is available online here. Going forward, in order to facilitate
public access to demolition permit information, public notification of pending
demolition permit applications will occur in the following ways:
- Enhancements to the
Landmarks Commission website to include the following:
- Real time data on
demolition applications over 40 years old: https://data.smgov.net/Permits-Licenses/Active-Demolition-Permits-for-Buildings-over-40-Ye/nvzr-qc5r/data
- Monthly posting of
demolition permit applications on Landmarks Commission website (this
posting will occur even if there is not a Landmarks Commission meeting)
- E-mail notification of
posting of demolition permit application list
You may sign up to receive notification of posting of
Landmarks Commission agendas by e-mailing a request to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Click here for key changes for an explanation of the revised process.
Demolition Application Process Goes Digital
Beginning December 3, 2018, the City’s demolition
application review process is moving online to improve services and reduce
delays. As of this date, the City will only accept demolition applications electronically
submitted through the City’s Electronic
Plan Review (EPR) system, where
an applicant can track an application’s progress online, and City reviewers
will receive timely notifications on projects awaiting their approval. The
streamlined process will automate many steps in the process, resulting in
quicker turnarounds for review and permit issuance. The updated Demolition
Application Packetincludes instructions on the new online process. Please send any
questions via email to email@example.com or by phone at 310.458.8355.
Information and video tutorials on
how to use EPR are located on the Electronic
Plan Reviewwebpage. If further assistance is
required, a Permit Specialist is available by appointment only, to provide
one-on-one assistance at the Permit Services Center in City Hall on Tuesdays
and Thursdays from 8 a.m. – 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to check availability and schedule an appointment.
Permitting Temporary Uses and/or Structures
new informational handout
is available for permitting
temporary uses and/or structures on private property. The City has experienced
an increased volume of these types of activities and the new handout is
intended to inform and guide applicants of the City approvals that may be required
prior to establishing a temporary use on private property, or commencing any construction
activity associated with a temporary use. Examples of temporary uses are commonly
referred to as ‘pop-ups’ in the commercial industry; however, the temporary
nature of these uses does not preclude or exempt them from compliance with
state and local codes such as the Building Code and Zoning Ordinance. The City
will continue to assess the permitting process for these types of activities to
identify areas where opportunities for improved efficiency may exist. Visit the
Applications and Forms
page to download the
Temporary Uses and Structures handout
Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) Standards
On June 12, 2018 the Santa Monica City Council adopted modifications to the Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) standards. These revised standards become effective on July 12, 2018.
The following are the key changes:
- Maximum Size:
- 650 SF for parcels 6,000 SF and smaller
- 800 SF for parcels greater than 6,000 SF
- Second Story Size:
- No limit; however, the second story cannot exceed the area of the first story
- ADUs must still be clearly subordinate to the main dwelling unit on the parcel in terms of size (i.e. floor area), location, and appearance.
ADUs continue to be excluded from R1 parcel coverage calculations per the R1 Interim Zoning Ordinance currently in effect. The ADU development standards will be revisited as part of the forthcoming effort to review and update the R1 Single-Unit Residential development standards over the next 12-18 months.
Click here for more information regarding ADUs.
If you have any questions, please contact the City Planning Division at (310) 458-8341 or at email@example.com
Commercial Cannabis Licensing Update
The City of Santa Monica is currently accepting applications to select two (2) Medicinal Cannabis Retailers. For more information on how to apply or for information on the permitting process for Medicinal Cannabis Light Manufacturing please visit the Commercial Cannabis Business Licensing page. Please note the City
has a prohibition on adult use non-medicinal commercial cannabis