Zoning & City Permits

What You Need To Do

Contact the Planning and Economic Development Department to find out what the zoning is for your prospective location and what land use permits may be required.


City of Santa Rosa Planning & Economic Development Department
Development Review/Planning Division
100 Santa Rosa Avenue, Room 3
Santa Rosa, CA 95404
Phone: 707-543-3220
Santa Rosa Downtown Marker

Estimated Cost

Item Cost
Zoning Clearance
No charge
Minor Use Permit
Application Processing
Conditional Use Permit
Planning Commission Public Hearing
Application Processing
(As of June 2016, for current info see Fee Schedule (PDF) or contact the department.)


  • Zoning Clearance - Over the counter
  • Minor Use Permit - Average of about 6 to 8 weeks
  • Conditional Use Permit - Average of about 2 to 3 months



Ordinance 3944 (PDF) (valid through July 2013) now makes it easier to open a restaurant downtown by allowing restaurants (with incidental bar) as a permitted use in all commercial (and several other) districts, without requirement of a use permit.

Also, because of Ordinance 3944, if a previous operator had an approved Conditional Use Permit (Minor or Major), the approval is transferable to a new business as long as the operator is willing to operate under the requirements of the previous approval and the previous restaurant was in operation within the last 24 months with no changes in use since.

Checking with the Planning and Economic Development Department on these issues is always a good first start.