What is a General Plan?


The General Plan serves as a planning guide that specifies the City’s long-term vision for the physical development and character of San Juan Capistrano. The document is a comprehensive plan which expresses the community's long-term goals and anticipated development patterns. It is made up of goals, objectives, principles, standards, and plan proposals, as well as a set of maps and diagrams.   Implementation of the San Juan Capistrano General Plan will ensure that future development projects are consistent with the community's goals and that adequate services are available to meet the needs of existing and proposed new development. Ultimately, the General Plan provides a bridge between the City's unique historic traditions and the San Juan Capistrano of tomorrow.

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1. What do Cities do?
2. What is Planning’s role in City government?
3. What is a General Plan?
4. What is Land Use?
5. What is a Municipal Code?
6. What is Zoning?
7. What is the difference between an entitlement and ministerial approval?
8. How do I know which entitlements I need for a project?
9. How do I find property information?
10. How do I locate property boundaries?
11. How do I know the zoning of a property?
12. How do I view or request a copy of building permits or building plans?
13. What are the development standards for my property’s zoning district?
14. What are the setbacks for a property?
15. Where do you measure setbacks from?
16. What are the requirements for submitting plans?
17. How do I look up information on Major Development Projects in the City?
18. How do I look up the status of a building permit?
19. How can I verify permits for a property?
20. How much do permits cost?
21. How do I use the City Interactive Geographic Information System (GIS) map portal layers?
22. Are short term rentals allowed?
23. Where can I locate the Planning Commission Agendas and Reports?
24. Where can I attend a City Council or a Planning Commission Meeting?
25. Where can I submit questions for the Planning Division?
26. What new housing developments are in the City?
27. What is an ADU?
28. Can I build an ADU on my single-family residential lot?
29. Do I need to provide parking for my ADU?
30. Where are the cities major transit stops or high-quality transit corridors?
31. Do I need a permit to build a block wall, fence, or a retaining wall?
32. Do I need a permit for a business sign?
33. How do I find if my commercial unit has a sign program?
34. What is a SB 9 or an Urban Lot Split?
35. What is the City’s protected ridgeline and ridgeline buffer?
36. Are planning entitlement project applications accepted online?
37. Where can the public access environmental documents and public records?
38. What does “non-conforming” mean?
39. How do I determine if a property is located within a flood zone?
40. What is the required setback for a pool or spa?
41. How do I file an appeal?
42. What types of affordable housing are available?
43. Do I need a tree removal permit to remove a tree on my property?
44. What protected trees are identified as heritage trees?
45. Does my property have a historic designation?
46. What are AB 2011 and SB 6?
47. What is AB 2097?
48. What are the requirements for a landscape or outdoor project in my residential yard?
49. Which jurisdiction should be contacted for mobile home repairs?