Last Updated: 03/29/2021

Zoning Letter of Determination (ZAD)

A Letter of Determination (ZAD) is a written response to a request regarding the classification of uses and the interpretation and applicability of the provisions of the Planning Code. A Letter may include a determination about whether a specific use is appropriate in a certain zoning district, or whether a certain use may retain its legal nonconforming status. Letters are typically require extensive research on the part of the Planning Department.

There is a fee associated with this written determination. Refer to Section 6 of the Fee Schedule.



Requests for a Letter of Determination must be submitted in writing or online using Public Portal.

Written Submission

Please outline your request or question and include the Property Address and Block & Lot numbers (use the SF Property Information Map to get this information) along with any additional information that may provide aid in analysis of the subject property. These items may include Building Permit records, copies of leases if applicable, and other documents that provide further insight into the question being posed. It takes 6-8 weeks (or more) to process this type of request depending on the workload of the assigned Planner.

Mail to:

Office of the Zoning Administrator
49 South Van Ness Avenue, Suite 1400
San Francisco, CA 94103

Online Public Portal

The City provides provides residents, businesses, and visitors access to government services online, 24-hours-a-day, 7-days-a-week through it's citizen portal. For security reasons, all online filing requires registration of a free user account. Please have all your property information ready in advance.

  1. After registering or login, go to "+ New" and select "Planning Application" (there may be an agreement screen for first-time accounts).
  2. Select from the list of available applications and follow all instructions.

For questions, you can call the Planning counter at 628.652.7300 or email where planners are able to assist you.

Español: Para información en Español llamar al 628.652.7550. Tenga en cuenta que el Departamento de Planificación necesitará al menos un día hábil para responder.

中文: 如果您需要中文的帮助, 请致电628.652.7550。请注意, 计划部门至少需要一个工作日才能做出回应。

Tagalog: Para sa impormasyon sa Tagalog tumawag sa 628.652.7550. Paki tandaan na mangangailangan ang Planning Department ng hindi kukulangin sa isang araw na pantrabaho para makasagot.

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