Submitting a Planning Application


The following provides information to help you successfully submit a planning application, including what you will need to submit, how to submit it, and who else may need to approve it first so that you can submit. 

We have transitioned to an 100% online permit application process. Please read the information below carefully because your project will be delayed if you submit a planning application that is incomplete.

There are three broad permitting categories:

  • Minor Online Permits can be submitted using an online and are are often processed administratively, unless a public hearing is requested. These permits are generally processed faster than major permits.
  • Other Administrative Permits are submitted using a PDF document and may require through a specialized permitting process. These permits generally have a faster review period compared to major permits.
  • Major Permits are submitted using a fillable PDF document and require additional review by a planner. Many major permits are discretionary and may require a public hearing prior to approval. The time to process varies significantly, depending on the complexity of the project.

The following questions will help direct you to the the appropriate application process for your project. 

Are you located in Contra Costa County?

  • If yes, continue to questions below 
  • If no, Contra Costa County is not your planning agency and you will need to seek approval from your city planning department. Please contact each directly to verify their requirements and current process for approval stamps before you get started. If your project is in any of the cities below, the County provides Building Permits and you will be required to upload the approved city planning application and approved plans in PDF format with your building permit application.

  • Helpful Resources for Checking your Jurisdiction

    • You can use CCMAP online mapping tool to check your jurisdiction.

Can my project be processed as a Minor Application?

Do you need planning approval for your business license?

Are you in Kensington?

Is your project on a substandard sized lot?

Does my project need another Administrative Permit Application?

Are you establishing a short term rental property?

Is your business wanting to establish a parklet?

Are you seeking approval for a Special Event?

Is my project a Major Application? 

Major Permit Applications are submitted using the General Permit PDF Application and require additional review by a planner. The time to process a major applications varies significantly depending on the complexity of the project.  

These project often require significant backup documentation. Please review the applicable How to Guides below prior to submittal. 

Major Planning Application (Fillable PDF)
Important Notice to Applicants (PDF)

Major Application Types

Accessory Dwelling Units (ADU), Certificate of Compliance Review, Development Plan, General Plan Amendment/Feasibility Study, Land Use Permit, Lot Line Adjustment, Major or Minor Subdivision, Planning Consideration, Rezoning, Tree Permit, Variance, or Wireless Facility. 

How to Guides

Have questions or Need More Information? 

  • Make an Appointment for help.
  • Call 925-655-2700 to speak with our planners on duty from 7:30 am - 5:00 pm Monday to Thursday, and 7:30 - 4:00 pm Friday.
  • Self-Help: Access to our ePermit Center allows you to search Property/Permit information such as current projects, previous entitlements, application status, and parcel numbers.