On these pages you will find a brief summary of the primary issues we are working on in addition to a list of issues we are monitoring.
How can you help?
Find out which proposed projects will be reviewed by the City of Pasadena's many Commissions and City Council by clicking here:
The City does not currently have design standards or guidelines for single-family homes located outside of Lower Hastings Ranch, Hillside Overlay District areas, and Landmark Districts. Concerns about Mansionization, or the erosion of neighborhood character through substantial residential remodels or contextually inappropriate new homes, are growing. Pasadena Heritage has long urged action to address these problems, and we are very pleased that progress is being made. The City retained consultant John Kaliski Architects to assist in creating single-family residential design guidelines, which were made public on May 23 in draft form at the Planning Commission. A new review process for new single-family dwellings, second-floor additions, and large remodels will also need to be adopted and is under discussion now.
Comments and recommendations received on the draft single-family residential design guidelines at the May 23 Planning Commission meeting are being incorporated into a final draft, which will return to the Commission this summer. At that time, the Commission will make its final recommendations for the City Council. Pasadena Heritage reviewed the draft design guidelines and found them to be well written, overall. We provided a number of comments to the Planning Commission, and will continue to be actively involved in the process.
Also, please monitor the Planning Commission agendas for updates.
The City of Pasadena’s Planning & Community Development Department is in the process of updating its Specific Plans. The following seven existing Specific Plans will be updated: Central District, East Colorado, East Pasadena, Fair Oaks/Orange Grove, Lincoln Avenue, North Lake, and South Fair Oaks. The existing West Gateway Specific Plan will be rescinded and a new Specific Plan will be created for the Lamanda Park neighborhood. These eight Specific Plans will guide future development in the City.
How to Get Involved
The City has launched a website (Our Pasadena) to share information and updates on Specific Plans. Please visit the website (https://www.ourpasadena.org) and sign up for email updates and connect on social media.
Additionally, starting in May 2018, the City will be hosting a series of eight workshops, each focusing on a Specific Plan area. Whether you are a resident of a certain Specific Plan area or just want to learn more, Pasadena Heritage encourages you to attend the workshops that interest you. The date and location of each of the eight workshops is listed below. For more information, please download the Our Pasadena Specific Plan Workshop Flyer.
1. EAST PASADENA: Thursday, May 17th from 6:00 to 8:00 pm at Armenian General Benevolent Union
2. SOUTH FAIR OAKS: Thursday, May 24th from 6:00 to 8:00 pm at Los Angeles College of Music
3. LINCOLN AVENUE: Thursday, June 14th from 6:00 to 8:00 pm at Lincoln Avenue Baptist Church
4. NORTH LAKE: Thursday, June 21st from 6:00 to 8:00 pm at Lake Avenue Church
5. CENTRAL DISTRICT: Tuesday, June 26th from 6:00 to 8:00 pm at the Senior Center
6. FAIR OAKS/ORANGE GROVE: Thursday, July 12th from 6:00 to 8:00 pm at the Fair Oaks Renaissance Plaza, Community Room
7. EAST COLORADO: Tuesday, July 17th from 6:00 to 8:00 pm at Pasadena City College, Creveling Lounge
8. LAMANDA PARK: Thursday, July 26th from 6:00 to 8:00 pm at Pasadena Christian Church
Questions to Consider
Finally, Pasadena Heritage urges you to ask questions and share your ideas and concerns at the workshops, as your feedback is extremely important to the City as it undertakes the task of updating each Specific Plan. We have compiled a list of nine questions (see below) that have occurred to us so far, as we begin to delve into the planning process; we hope that they will help you formulate your own questions. (Printable version of questions.)
1. Where are the designated historic resources in or near each specific plan area? Are there additional historic resources that are not officially designated? Are there future development sites or plan changes that could affect historic resources? How?
2. For existing plans that are being updated, what has happened there in the last 10 years? What is working best and what is not working? What expectations were set that have not materialized? Why? What factors will drive changes for this plan area and why?
3. For the new Lamanda Park Specific Plan, what are the goals to be achieved by creating this new Specific Plan? Are they the right goals? How will they be achieved?
4. Are there places within each Specific Plan or on its borders, where single-family residential zones abut commercial or multi-family residential zones? Is there adequate transition or buffering in the areas now? If not, how will transitions be improved?
5. What are the residential and commercial development caps in each Specific Plan area? How much capacity will current projects (under construction or anticipated) use, and how much will remain? Should those caps be adjusted?
6. Where is the public open space within each Specific Plan area? Is it enough for the current users (residents)? Is it enough for future users if more housing is added? Where are the opportunities to create, assemble, or develop more parks or open space?
7. Where specifically within each plan area is new development targeted to be? Why? Are there existing buildings (historic or not) that could be re-used? How can environmentally superior re-use be encouraged or incentivized?
8. In the Central District, what development sites remain that are the most likely to be developed in the next ten-twenty years? This Specific Plan area is almost entirely composed of historic districts and buildings. How can design excellence and compatibility of new design with historic buildings be achieved (here and throughout the city)?
9. Will State housing legislation (SB1818 and new policy) affect potential housing development and the General Plan’s caps (increased by 35% or more). How can our regulations/code or General Plan allowances be changed to mitigate these forced increases?