Design Guidelines

As part of the design review process, projects will be reviewed for consistency with the adopted design guidelines that apply to the project. Below are links to all adopted design guidelines.

Citywide Design Guidelines

Citywide Design Principles

General design principles from the land use element of the General Plan.  These principles apply to all design review projects citywide.

Land Use Element

Design related goals and policies in the Land Use Element of the General Plan apply to all projects subject to Design Review.

Specific Plans Design Guidelines

Below are links to the design guidelines chapter of each of the City’s Specific Plan. Projects within the boundaries of a Specific Plan will be reviewed for consistency with that Specific Plan’s design guidelines (see map above). For a list of full Specific Plan documents visit the link below.

Lincoln Avenue

These design guidelines apply to projects in the Lincoln Avenue Pasadena Specific Plan area.

South Fair Oaks

These design guidelines apply to projects in the South Fair Oaks Specific Plan area.  The Design Guidelines for Neighborhood Commercial & Multi-family Residential Districts also apply in this area.

North Lake

These design guidelines apply to projects in the North Lake Specific Plan area.  The Design Guidelines for Neighborhood Commercial & Multi-family Residential Districts also apply in this area.

East Pasadena

These design guidelines apply to projects in the East Pasadena Specific Plan area.  The Design Guidelines for Neighborhood Commercial & Multi-family Residential Districts also apply in this area.

East Colorado Boulevard

These design guidelines apply to projects in the East Colorado Specific Plan area. The Design Guidelines for Neighborhood Commercial & Multi-family Residential Districts also apply in this area.

Central District

These design guidelines apply to projects in the Central District Specific Plan area.

Fair Oaks/Orange Grove

These design guidelines apply to projects in the Fair Oaks/Orange Grove Specific Plan area. The Design Guidelines for Neighborhood Commercial & Multi-family Residential Districts also apply in this area.

Specific Plans

Other Design Guidelines

Below are links to other design guidelines that may apply to new development projects. See the description of each set of guidelines to determine those that apply to a specific project.

Sign Design Guidelines

Where design review is required for new signs (refer to the design review thresholds in the Zoning Code), the Sign Design Guidelines apply.

Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for the Treatment of Historic Properties

These guidelines apply to projects that affect designated or eligible historic buildings and may also apply to adjacent sites.

Neighborhood Commercial and
Multi-Family Residential Districts

These design guidelines apply to projects in Neighborhood Commercial and Multi-family Residential Zoning Districts and are supplemental to design guidelines in each specific plan area except the Central District.

Design Guidelines
for Historic Districts in Pasadena

Design Guidelines for Historic Districts in the City of Pasadena, California, April 2002 with the Secretary of the Interiors Standards for Historic Preservation