Los Angeles County Department of Regional Planning


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Created On:
Dec 02, 2008
Last Updated:
Sep 10, 2012
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Zoning FAQ

What is zoning? Why is it important?

Zoning regulates land use, density, setbacks, parking, lot coverage, building size, and thereby provides a means to implement the County’s General Plan and Community Plans. The overall objectives of planning and zoning are to protect public health, safety and welfare, to promote compatibility between various land uses and developments and to promote an attractive and well-planned community.

How do I find the zone for a property?

Z-NET Public is the simplest way (added January 2011). Click here to begin. Our other GIS web mapping applications have more layers and functionality; they can be accessed here: GIS mapping applications. After accepting the terms and conditions of usage, you will be launched into the GIS system. Once there, click on “Search” and type in either your address (House Number and Street Name) or Parcel ID (Assessor’s Parcel Number or APN). Click on “Submit” and you should see your property pulled up on the interface. The zoning designation is in blue (on the map).

Please note that the zoning designation provided by the Los Angeles County Assessor’s Office is often incorrect (in the tabular report); and should not be used for unincorporated areas.

What is the number after the zone (e.g. A-1-1; R-1-5000)?

Generally, if the number is < 100, this is the minimum required gross lot area in acres.
If the number is > 100, this is the minimum required net lot area in square feet.
Refer to for more information.

Besides the zone, are there other special requirements?

In addition to the zone, the following special district, area and plans further regulate the property. These special requirements supersede the basic zone regulations. Please contact us for more information.

How do I request for a Zone Change on my property?

Zone change may be initiated by the Board of Supervisors, the Regional Planning Commission, or more commonly, by individual property owners who desire to develop property with a land use or density that is not permitted by the existing zoning classification. To be adopted, a zone change must be consistent with the adopted General Plan, including local area and community plans, which reflect the County’s policy regarding land use. If the proposed zoning is not consistent with the applicable general plan, it cannot be approved.

Major issues involved in the evaluation of zone change requests include consistency with the applicable general plan; compatibility with surrounding land uses; avoidance of “spot zoning”; land suitability and physical constraints; project design and layout; availability of adequate access, public services and facilities to serve the proposed development; potential environmental impacts and mitigation measures; and project design (the Department of Regional Planning and the Regional Planning Commission frequently recommend a zoning classification that requires adherence to a specific development plan approved by the Commission by means of a Conditional Use Permit).

To apply for a Zone Change, please follow the instructions on the Zoning Permit application for submittal. Along with the items listed on that application checklist, you will have to submit a Zone Change Burden Of Proof (download PDF or Word). Please refer to the fee schedule for the cost of a particular application submittal. Note that all discretionary applications requiring a public hearing, except Subdivision applications or in conjunction with Subdivision applications, are currently taking approximately 1 year to process. Applications which involve a subdivision are currently taking a minimum of 2-3 years to complete. Please contact the public counter for more information or assistance.

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Department of Regional Planning
320 West Temple Street
Los Angeles, CA 90012
T: (213) 974-6411 . F: (213) 626-0434
TDD: (213) 617-2292
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