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The City of Berkeley Health Officer has ordered all residents to shelter at home, leaving only to receive or provide essential services, starting 12:01 am on Tuesday, March 17. See details of the Order, frequently asked questions, and recommendations from Berkeley Public Health at https://www.cityofberkeley.info/coronavirus.

City Council Live Stream: Please visit https://www.cityofberkeley.info/CalendarEventWebcastMain.aspx

ZAB Live Stream: Please visit http://www.cityofberkeley.info/Clerk/Commissions/Zoning_Adjustment_Board_Meeting_-_Video_Stream.aspx.

The City of Berkeley web site is undergoing scheduled maintenance starting on Friday night, September 13 and ending on Saturday afternoon, September 14. During this time, most web pages should be available, but some resources may become unavailable for short periods of time.

Looking for a live stream of the Zoning Adjustments Board (ZAB) meeting on 5/9/19, at 7:00pm? Please visit https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC1UAnZ8kU8EWllREyOY7rwQ/. The normal viewing methods will not work this time due to a concurrent City Council Special Meeting at the same time.

Looking for a live stream of the Zoning Adjustments Board (ZAB) meeting on 2/28/19, from 6:00 to 11:00 PM? Please visit http://www.cityofberkeley.info/Clerk/Commissions/Zoning_Adjustment_Board_Meeting_-_Video_Stream.aspx. The normal viewing methods will not work this time due to a concurrent City Council Special Meeting at the same date and time.

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Department of Planning & Development
Department of Planning & Development

What is a Zoning Certificate? 

A Zoning Certificate is a confirmation that a particular land use or structure is allowed under the Zoning Code. A Zoning Certificate is generally issued by the Land Use Planning (Zoning) staff through the Online Service Center or at the Permit Service Center.

Do I need a Zoning Certificate?

Zoning Certificates are typically required if you are starting a new use or changing an existing use, building a structure or starting a business. For example, you might need a Zoning Certificate when: 

  • Applying for a business license or building permit. 
  • Adding some types of accessory buildings, such as a garage or shed. 
  • Constructing a small, single-story residential addition. 
  • Proposing a minor, interior remodel. 
  • Starting a new business. 

More complex projects or projects which do not meet existing zoning standards may require an Administrative Use Permit or Use Permit. 

How does staff decide whether to approve a Zoning Certificate? 

To approve a Zoning Certificate, staff must find that the project is permitted in the Zoning Ordinance.

How do I apply for a Zoning Certificate? 

Applications may be filed online or in person at the Permit Service Center.  Building permit and business license applications will be sent to staff for initial review to determine whether a Zoning Certificate can be issued, or whether additional zoning review is required.

How long does it take? 

Depending on the project, Zoning Certificate approval may take a few short minutes or several business days.

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