The Planning Division is responsible for implementing City policies that direct the physical development of Lomita. Planning serves as the point of entry for development proposals and provides assistance to architects, designers, developers, builders, and residents navigating the regulatory process. On a daily basis, staff assists customers with permit processing, conducts land use/zoning, environmental, and design review of all development applications, and ensures development is consistent with the General Plan, which is the City’s long range blueprint and policy document.

Municipal Code Online
Downtown Design Guidelines

The Planning Division processes the following applications:

  • Site Plan Review
  • Conditional Use Permits
  • General Plan Amendments
  • Variances
  • Subdivision of Land
  • Sign Review
  • Review for compliance with Zoning
  • Home-Based Business Permits
  • Residential Property Reports

Contact Us

Call us: (310) 325-7110 ext. 103

Email us

Our Location
24300 Narbonne Ave.
Lomita, CA U.S.A. 90717

Hours of Operation
7:30AM – NOON
1:00PM – 5:30PM
Monday – Friday
(Closed every other Friday)

Planning Division Counter Hours

8AM-4PM

Planning Process Review

The Purpose of this guide is to prepare project proponents for the review and processing of various development applications within the City of Lomita. It is made available to the public for reference, as a summary of code requirements and explanation of planning terms and processes.

The information provided herein is consistent with the General Plan of the City of Lomita, the current Zoning Code, the California State Subdivision Map Act, and all other applicable state, county and local ordinances, policies and regulations.

Review Process

Prior to obtaining a building permit, projects that entail construction or modifications to existing structures, including construction of fences, new windows, and solar installations, must undergo an administrative (staff level) site plan review to verify the project’s compliance with the City’s required development standards.

A member of the Planning Division staff will be assigned as the case planner for the project upon an application’s submission. The case planner will review the project for compliance with applicable development standards and will collect an administrative review fee from the applicant; the review fee is waived for solar panel projects. Projects that require minor corrections will be provided a list of revisions necessary to make the project code compliant. The applicant will be issued an approval letter once any necessary revisions are made and the case planner determines that the project adheres to all applicable development standards. The planner will also stamp plans submitted with the application.

Upon receiving administrative approval the applicant must submit two complete sets of plans to the Los Angeles County Department of Building and Safety for plan check. A complete set of plans includes a site plan, structural plan, floor plans, and elevations. Building and Safety staff will inform the applicant if additional plans or sets of plans are required.

Plan check fees are collected at the time of submission and are based on the valuation of the project, but include school tax and other fees. Plans are reviewed for expansive soil conditions, seismic resistance requirements, and energy saving measures, as well as other Building and Safety requirements. After any required modifications to the plans are made; a building permit is issued.

If the administrative review shows that a project does not meet code requirements or requires discretionary review per the Lomita Zoning Code, the project will need entitlement approval from the Planning Commission and possibly the City Council depending on the entitlement(s) requested prior to obtaining a building permit. Planning Commission approval is also required for discretionary planning applications, including but not limited to; zone change, and conditional use permit applications.

A member of the Planning Division staff will be assigned as the case planner for the project. The case planner will provide the applicant a list of required supplemental materials be submitted with their application, such as plans, elevations, site surveys, etc. After an application is determined complete for processing, the case planner will prepare and present a report to the Commission recommending approval or denial of the project.

The case planner will schedule the project for review and discussion by the Development Advisory Committee (DAC). The DAC meets on the second Tuesday of each month and provides a coordinated review of development proposals with regard to the City Code, goals, policies, and standards. The purpose of the meeting is to review the proposed project and identify any issues requiring special attention or revision.

The DAC is comprised of the following representatives, forming the core group: Principal Planner, City Engineer, Los Angeles County Sheriff Deputy, and Assistant City Manager. As necessary or as requested, additional members may be requested to attend the meeting to provide specialized review.
An applicant’s responsiveness to the DAC’s comments and concerns will help to expedite the project through this step of the planning process. If necessary, DAC members may meet individually with applicants to resolve technical issues. Such meetings should be coordinated with the case planner.

Once all issues have been addressed by the DAC and the applicant has submitted all necessary materials, the case planner will prepare the staff report which includes a project recommendation and schedule the project for a public hearing for Planning Commission review.

A public hearing requires notification of surrounding property owners and allows for opposing arguments to be heard. The procedures necessary to schedule a public hearing are detailed in the appropriate instructions. The Lomita Planning Commission meets on the second Monday of each month. Plans must be deemed complete by the assigned case planner prior to scheduling the item to appear before the Planning Commission. After the case planner presents the project’s staff report, the applicant, as well anyone in attendance at the hearing, will be given the opportunity to address the Commission regarding the project. The Planning Commission may then approve, approve with conditions, or deny the proposed project. For approvals such as tentative maps and legislative amendments, the Planning Commission will make a recommendation to the City Council for final approval, approval with conditions, or denial.

If an applicant is dissatisfied with the Planning Commission’s decision it may be appealed to City Council. The decision of the City Council upon an appeal from an action of the commission is final and conclusive.

Handouts/Submittal Requirements

New Projects & Zoning Changes

Additional Information/Handouts

The Planning Division publishes helpful flyer cards on a variety of topics:

Maximum Height:

27′ House, not exceeding 2 stories, except south of Pacific Coast Highway

16′ House, south of Pacific Coast Highway

16′ Accessory building and structure, not exceeding one story

Floor Area Ratio (FAR) controls the bulk of a building. It is calculated by the gross square footage of all the buildings and/or structure on a lot divided by the lot area.

FAR = GROSS SQUARE FOOTAGE (sq. ft.) / LOT AREA (sq. ft.)

Maximum FAR = .60 includes all bldgs. on a lot

Example of a Typical Lot:

For details, exceptions and other requirements, contact the City of Lomita Planning Dept. at 310-325-7110.

JCM: 7/93

For residential fence height requirements, please refer to the City of Lomita’s Municipal Code Section 11-1.30.07. For nonresidential fence height requirements, please refer to the City of Lomita’s Municipal Code Section 11-1.68.02.

Home Occupation Located in Residential Zone

A resident may conduct a business out of a home in residential zones provided that such business does not change the character of the residential use. Typical allowed home occupations include an office use, tax preparation, and clothing alteration. A Home Occupation License must be obtained and the license fee is based on gross annual receipts. The following criteria and conditions must be met:

  • Only family members who live on the premises may help with the business;
  • Total area of the business shall not exceed one room or 400 sq. ft. of the house;
  • No outdoor storage is allowed;
  • The business shall not occupy the required parking spaces in a garage and must comply with off-street parking requirements;
  • Only vehicles registered to the occupants and normally used for personal purposes shall be kept on the premises;
  • No pedestrian or vehicular traffic can be generated;
  • Use of utilities, community facilities and services shall not exceed normal household use;
  • Only those materials and mechanical equipment normally used in a household is permitted;
  • No business signs are permitted; and
  • The residential appearance of the house must be maintained.

Residential Use Located in Non-Residential Zone

A home occupation conducted out of a residential use in a non-residential zone may be permitted with the City Administrator’s approval only.

For details, exceptions and other requirements, contact the City of Lomita Planning Dept. at 310-325-7110.

Accessory Dwelling Units

At this time, the City is applying the State’s requirements. To understand the requirements, please go to Government Code Sec. 65852.22. To submit an application, please go to lomitaca.viewpointcloud.com

Here is a graphic outlining the steps and procedures to building an addition or a new unit

Maximum Height:

27′ House, not exceeding 2 stories, except south of Pacific Coast Highway

16′ House, south of Pacific Coast Highway

16′ Accessory building and structure, not exceeding one story

Floor Area Ratio (FAR) controls the bulk of a building. It is calculated by the gross square footage of all the buildings and/or structure on a lot divided by the lot area.

FAR = GROSS SQUARE FOOTAGE (sq. ft.) / LOT AREA (sq. ft.)

Maximum FAR = .60 includes all bldgs. on a lot

Example of a Typical Lot:

For details, exceptions and other requirements, contact the City of Lomita Planning Dept. at 310-325-7110.

This is a summary of Article 67 of the Municipal Code. For additional information please contact the City of Lomita, Planning Division at 310-25-7110.

All sign installations require Planning Division approval and most require building permits from the LA County Building & Safety. For building permit information, please contact the LA County Building & Safety department at 310-534-3760.

Types of Signs

Zone / Type of Sign Roof Sign Projecting Sign Signs supported or suspended from the underside of an awning, canopy, or parapet of a building.
C-G Commercial General C-R Commercial Retail May be permitted subject to review and approval by the Planning Commission. Maximum sign area is 1 square foot for each lineal foot of building frontage. May project 5 feet above roof or parapet wall and 3 feet over public right-of-way and shall project perpendicular to the building. Length of said sign shall not exceed 2/3 of the length of the projection of the awning, canopy, or parapet and the height of the sign shall not exceed 2 feet. The sign shall be 90 degrees to the building and a clear distance of 8 feet shall be maintained from the lowest point of the sign to the ground below.
C-R Commercial Retail (Commercial development along Pacific Coast Highway) Prohibited  Maximum sign area is 1 square foot for each lineal foot of building frontage, not to exceed 100 square feet. May project 5 feet above roof or parapet wall and 3 feet over public right-of-way and shall project perpendicular to the building. Length of said sign shall not exceed 2/3 of the length of the projection of the awning, canopy, or parapet and the height of the sign shall not exceed 2 feet. The sign shall be 90 degrees to the building and a clear distance of 8 feet shall be maintained from the lowest point of the sign to the ground below.
M-C Light Manufacturing
& Commercial
May be permitted subject to review and approval by the Planning Commission. Prohibited Prohibited
D-C Downtown
Commercial (For additional information, see Downtown Lomita Design Guidelines Manual)
Prohibited Maximum sign area shall be calculated in conjunction with the total amount of sign area allowed for said wall. (Refer to front, rear, and side wall guidelines) but not to exceed 20 square feet for each sign face. Maximum area for awning signs shall be calculated in conjunction with the total sign area allowed for the entire building wall or tenant space. Signs on awnings are limited to ground level occupancy only and a clear distance of 8 feet shall be maintained from the lowest point of the sign to the ground below.
Zone / Type of Sign Front Wall Sign Rear Wall Sign Side Wall Sign Freestanding/ Pole/ Monument Sign
C-G Commercial General C-R Commercial Retail Maximum sign area is 15% of the area of the front wall and shall not project more than 1 foot from the said wall. Shall only be permitted if the rear wall of the building faces a street, parking area, or pedestrian mall. Maximum sign area is 10% of the area of the rear wall and shall not project more than 1 foot from the said wall. Maximum sign area is 7.5% of the area of said side wall, and shall not project more than 1 foot from the side wall. 1 free standing or pole sign permitted for a planned shopping center/ an automotive service station and other businesses subject to review and approval by the Planning Commission. (Contact the Planning Division for additional information.)
C-R Commercial Retail (Commercial development along Pacific Coast Highway) Maximum sign area is 15% of the area of the front wall and shall not project more than 1 foot from the said wall. Shall only be permitted if the rear wall of the building faces a street, parking area, or pedestrian mall. Maximum sign area is 10% of the area of the subject wall and shall not project more than 1 foot from the said wall. Maximum sign area is 7.5% of the area of said side wall, not to project more than 1 foot therefrom. May only be permitted subject to review and approval by the Planning Commission. Signs must be at least 100 feet from another freestanding sign and located in a landscaped planter. Low profile (under 10′ high) monument signs are preferred and should match the building. (Contact the Planning Division for additional information.)
M-C Light Manufacturing
& Commercial
Maximum sign area is 10% of the area of the front wall and shall not project more than 1 foot from the front wall. Shall only be permitted if the rear wall of the building faces a street, parking area, or pedestrian mall. Maximum sign area is 10% of the area of said rear wall, and shall not project more than 1 foot from the rear wall. Maximum sign area is 7.5% of the area of said side wall, not to project more than 1 foot therefrom. Maximum sign area allowed is 10% of the area of the wall if the building is located on corner lot. Maximum sign area is 1 square foot for each front foot of lot or parcel frontage, not to exceed 200 square feet of sign area per face. Only 1 sign permitted for each 250 feet of parcel frontage on a public street.
D-C Downtown
Commercial (For additional information, see Downtown Lomita Design Guidelines Manual)
Maximum total sign area allowed for the entire front building wall or tenant space is 1.5 square feet for each linear foot of said building wall or building frontage assigned to a tenant, but shall not exceed 40 square feet. Wall signs shall not obstruct any portion of a window or door and shall not project above the eave of a roof or top of parapet wall. Shall only be permitted if the rear wall of the building faces a street, parking area, or pedestrian mall. Maximum total sign area allowed for the entire rear wall or tenant space is 1 square foot for each linear foot of said building wall or tenant space, but shall not exceed 10 square feet. Wall signs shall not obstruct any portion of a window or door and shall not project above the eave of a roof or top of parapet wall. Maximum total sign area allowed for the entire side wall or tenant space is 1 square foot for each linear foot of said building wall or tenant space, but shall not exceed 10 square feet. Wall signs shall not obstruct any portion of a window or door and shall not project above the eave of a roof or top of parapet wall. Prohibited

The following types of signs are prohibited in all zones within the City of Lomita:

  1. Rotating, flashing, scintillating signs and any other signs indicating motion or change of light intensity.
  2. Rectangle signs which are freestanding, “A- frame” or “sandwich” signs or other similar type portable signs, which are either carried or freestanding. (except in the Downtown Commercial Zone)
  3. Billboards

Permitted Temporary Signs:
The applicant shall submit a written request to the Community Development Director for any temporary sign, indicating the type and size of sign, display dates and location.

  1. Window signs – placed on the glass surface or a building may be either temporary or permanent. It may not cover more than 35% of the total glass surface area, but not more than 25% in the Downtown Commercial Zone)
  2. Real estate signs – 1 non-illuminated banner sign per business, mounted on the wall of the building, not to exceed 32 square feet in area, offering the place for sale, lease or rental. On corner lots, two such signs may be placed not to exceed 48 square feet of combined area.
  3. Temporary promotional banner signs – advertising a product, new business, new management, sale or grand opening, not to exceed 32 square feet in size. (24 square feet in the Downtown Commercial Zone) They may be displayed up to 120 days per calendar year, but no longer than 60 consecutive days at any one time, and a minimum of 30 days before the next time the banner is displayed. (Temporary banner applications are available at City Hall.)
  4. Temporary devices – such as flags, streamers, pennants, and balloons are permitted for a maximum of 4 events per calendar year not to exceed a total of 10 days per event. Metallic or mylar balloons, giant inflatables such as hot air balloon signs or promotional display balloons are not permitted.
  5. Bench signs – subject to the approval of the Community Development Director.
Lomita Zoning Code
Lomita Zoning Map

Summary of Zones

Zone Type Intent and Purpose
A-1 Agricultural/Non-Commercial One House and Accessory Uses on a lot, farm pets allowed on lots greater than 9,500 square feet
R-1 Single-Family Residential One House and Accessory Uses on a lot
R-V-D Residential Variable Density Multiple-Residential Building and Accessory Uses on a lot
C-G Commercial, General Same as C-S-P and C-N To provide for intensive commercial activities and specialized service establishments Examples: bakery, auto sales, printers
C-P-D Commercial Planned Development Residential uses are the same as A-1 and R-1 except that each lot shall be minimum 10,000 square feet and have 75 feet frontage. Authorized commercial uses are determined by the Planning Commission and require a Conditional Use Permit.
C-R Commercial, Retail To provide for retail sales activities and limited service establishments along Pacific Coast Highway Examples: hotels, restaurants, retail stores
D-C Downtown Commercial Established to promote the revitalization and development of the downtown area. This zone promotes a wide range of commercial retail, service, and entertainment uses.
M-C Light Manufacturing/Commercial To provide for a wide variety and complexity of specialized uses and public service facilities with consideration of adjacent zones Examples: equipment rental, lumber yard

For details, exceptions, and other requirements, contact the City of Lomita Community and Economic Development Department at 310-325-7110, extension 122.