2020 General Plan

The General Plan is a comprehensive plan for growth and development in the City of Grass Valley and the surrounding unincorporated area. Together, the City and surrounding unincorporated area are termed the Planning Area. Every county and city in California is required by State law to adopt a general plan (Article 5, Section 65300 et seq. of the Government Code).

A General Plan is often compared to a "constitution" for local development, and serves as the policy basis for all land use decisions.

Community Design Guidelines

The Community Design Guidelines are intended to provide design professionals, property owners, developers, and citizens-at-large with a clear and common understanding of the City’s expectations regarding the aesthetics and functionality of development proposals in Grass Valley.

Design Review Guidelines for the 1872 Historic Townsite

The Design Review Guidelines for the 1872 Historic Townsite are intended to comply with and further define the design standards and development regulations found in the City of Grass Valley's Development Code, Municipal Codes, General Plan (Chapter 13 - Cultural/Historical Resources), Downtown Strategic Plan, and specific planning documents.  The design review guidelines do not override existing regulations, yet they will provide an important tool for both the public and the City of Grass Valley,

Downtown Strategic Plan

The City and the Grass Valley Downtown Association recognized the need to craft a policy document that would guide the future of the downtown.  Such a document would see to preserve and enhance the downtown district as the City’s cultural, historical, retail and business center.  The intent of the Plan was to analyze market conditions, examine expansion/in-fill opportunities for new or expanding business, and create an implementation plan to guide future development and improvements within the downtown area.

Historic Building Demolition Ordinance

The provisions of the Historic Building Demolition Ordinance shall apply to all primary structures constructed on properties lying within City Limits prior to the year 1945. The Council found that the year 1945 represents a transitional time for the City of Grass Valley in its building design and architecture.  Following 1945, the City experienced more suburban style development which did always not contain or incorporate a historic design or architectural pattern found in the City’s older neighborhoods predating 1945. 

Historic Preservation Ordinance

The Historic Preservation Ordinance established regulations and procedures for the protection, enhancement and preservation of properties, structures, sites, artifacts and other cultural resources that represent significant and distinctive elements within the 1872 Historic Townsite. This includes the City’s cultural, educational, social, economic, political and architectural history.

Historical Resource Guide

The Grass Valley Historical Commission, in partnership with the Nevada County Contractors Association, has published this resource guide to facilitate rehabilitation and restoration of older structures. The resource guide includes contractors, artisans and suppliers known to be skilled in working on older homes. The list was assembled from a variety of sources.  The City, nor Historical Commission, does not endorse nor recommend any specific contractor.  The intent of this guide is to provide property owners with a list of qualified contractors with experience working on older homes.

Housing Element 2019-2027

The intent of the Housing Element of the General Plan is to provide the City with a coordinated and comprehensive strategy for promoting the production of safe, decent, and affordable housing within the community.  Grass Valley has areas of special priority that provide additional purpose to the Housing Element.  The unique conditions and market forces in play in the local housing market require that the Housing Element focus on additional concerns.  Some examples include the high proportion of rental homes in the City versus the rest of the County; lower average income of households versus

Loma Rica Specific Plan

The Loma Rica Ranch Specific Plan (LRRSP) enables the development of the Loma
Rica Ranch Special Development Area (SDA) as it has been anticipated by the Grass
Valley General Plan. Upon approval of the LRRSP, the LRRSP will constitute the
zoning for the property, consistent with the regulatory framework set forth in the

Whispering Pines Specific Plan

This Specific Plan for the Whispering Pines Corporate Community serves as its own zoning district.  Such a district is tailored to this location where a broad and complex development concept is involved.  General zoning provisions have been provided to establish a Specific Plan Development District.  The type of development can be industrial, commercial or residential, some subcategory of use of some combination of uses.  The purpose is to main City control over development standards and appearance while offering developers flexibility in parcel assembly, construction phasing and funding of

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