Location: Berkeley, California

Client: City of Berkeley

Scope: Environmental Analysis - EIR


The Berkeley Downtown Area Plan (DAP) is an urban land use plan for future development in downtown Berkeley. The boundary of the planning area abuts Berkeley’s historic center. The DAP was the result of a litigation Settlement Agreement between the UC Berkeley and the City related to the University’s Long Range Development Plan. The Settlement Agreement benefitted both sides: UC needed 800,000 square feet of University-related non-residential development in the downtown area; the City saw this as an opportunity to up-zone the Downtown Area for increased residential densities and building heights. The DAP replaces Berkeley’s 1990 Downtown Plan and is used to guide development in the Downtown Area through 2030.

The DAP allows significant additional growth and development in Berkeley’s downtown area including up to 3,100 dwelling units and nearly 1,000,000 square feet of non-residential space - largely comprised of a range of UC Berkeley academic, research, office and related institutional uses.


John Courtney, Ph.D. and Senior Planner at Lamphier-Gregory (now retired) was the Project Manager for the $500,000 EIR. Assisting with technical studies were IBI Group (traffic) and ARG (historic resources).


The EIR was completed and certified by the City of Berkeley in August 2009. There was no legal challenge to the EIR, although the Plan was the subject of an initiative - Measure R in 2010 - that was voted upon and sustained by the residents of Berkeley by 64% - 36%. Much of the vision of the DAP has been incorporated into the Berkeley Municipal Code (zoning). 



Downtown Berkeley © Michael Layefsky

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