Several years ago, City Planning set out to create a modern and efficient zoning system for Los Angeles. The proposed approach aims to establish a new Zoning Code that is more responsive to the needs of Los Angeles’s neighborhoods, in addition to being easier to use.
While conventional methods of zoning have traditionally focused on prohibiting incompatible uses, the new approach focuses on the physical design of a building as well as its use. As City Planning launches updates to its 35 Community Plans, new zoning will be developed to implement the policies and goals for the different neighborhoods across Los Angeles.
The proposed zoning structure consists of five key parts or “districts”: Form, Frontage, Development Standards, Use, and Density. While Form, Frontage, and Development Standards regulate the built environment, Use and Density refer to the activities allowed on a site.
Form Districts determine how large buildings can be.
Frontage Districts influence how buildings appear from the street level, from their proximity to the street to their ground floor height requirements.
Development Standards Districts
Development Standards Districts regulate certain design elements around the building, including those relating to access, parking, and signs.
Use Districts determine what kinds of activities are allowed on a property―ranging from residential to commercial and, in some instances, a mix of uses.
Density Districts determine the number of housing units permitted on any site zoned for residential units.
Plan Overlays provide additional development controls. They function as tailored zoning districts, each with their own specialized set of regulations.