Design Standards and Design Guidelines

The City of Concord recently completed the process for the development of a robust set of Objective Design Standards (ODS) for residential development. The standards ensure that projects achieve high quality building design and the proposed approach will ensure that the City has a creative, economically feasible, and sustainable strategy toward new development.

The intent of this effort is to address recent changes in State law that seek to streamline and increase housing production. The project will result in making approval processes ministerial, rather than discretionary, and more predictable for developers. Transforming the City’s existing guidelines and subjective criteria into objective standards for qualifying housing projects citywide required an almost 18-month process linked here.  Staff is currently preparing applications and checklists for the implementation of the standards, the effective date is October 12, 2023.

Other design guidelines remain in effect for (non-qualifying) residential and commercial projects.  Those include, the Concord Design Guidelines (1987), the Downtown Concord Specific Plan (2014), the Downtown Concord Design Guidelines (2020), and others shown below.  See Chapter 18.152 linked below for qualifying and exempt residential projects.