LWC's approach to the Master Plan and Specific Plan in the State of California, integrates our command of land use policy, economics, municipal finance, market fundamentals, and community engagement.  On each of the projects listed below, LWC addressed policy consistency and alternatives, economic and financial performance, market influences, and led or worked closely with a multi-disciplinary team to cover other areas of expertise, including parking and circulation, environmental/CEQA, civil engineering, and design standards.

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AShland and Cherryland Business district Specific Plan

Alameda County, CA  |  2013 - 2015

LWC was retained by the County of Alameda, California as the lead firm to prepare an update to the Ashland and Cherryland Business District Specific Plan (Plan). LWC led a consultant team, consisting of firms specializing in mobility, finance, urban design, CEQA, retail programming, communication, and community engagement.

The project entailed analyzing the Plan Area, distilling the current community profile, evaluating market conditions and opportunities, evaluating the existing zoning regulations, and preparing a Code with traditional and form-based elements. A key purpose of the Plan is to bring about economic revitalization through a detailed, market-based implementation plan. Community outreach was a significant factor in the Plan development process and was facilitated through the use of a project-based, multi-lingual website and social media channels. 

The Final Plan Update was adopted unanimously by the Alameda County Board of Supervisors on December 8, 2015 and won the 2016 California APA, Northern Section Outstanding Planning Award for Economic Development.  

View the report here.

Bellevue Community Plan

Merced, CA  |  2011 - 2015

A consultant team led by LWC was hired by the City of Merced to prepare the Bellevue Community Plan (BCP) to guide development for 1,600 acres of undeveloped land adjacent to the UC Merced campus. The area is envisioned to support services for the rapidly growing UC campus community and provide a range of housing types, commercial and office spaces, and public facilities.

The BCP includes community-driven urban design concepts, a form-based code framework, a circulation plan, and economic analysis. Concepts focus on a harmonious, locally calibrated relationship between design, economics, and the public realm. The extensive public outreach program consisted of stakeholder interviews, technical and citizen advisory committee meetings, a multi-day design charrette, and several public hearings. Plan preparation and community outreach was completed in a highly collaborative effort between the City and Consultant Team.

The Merced City Council unanimously adopted the BCP in April 2015 and it received a State APA Award for Outstanding Plan, small jurisdiction.  At the adoption hearing, Mayor Stan Thurston commented that “the whole process should be an example of the right way to engage the public.”

View the report here.

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Downtown vision program & Specific Plan Update

SOLEDAD, CA  |  2011 - 2012

LWC was hired by the City of Soledad to lead a team of consultants to update the City’s Downtown Specific Plan. A key component of the project was a detailed Vision Program that guided the Specific Plan Update. LWC was responsible for project management, land use planning, economics, financial feasibility, and the public outreach program.

The Downtown Specific Plan Update aims to restore the City’s historic downtown as the commercial center, which has been undermined by strip-mall retail at the City’s edge. The Downtown Specific Plan builds on the City’s existing downtown assets including recently improved streetscapes, a compact pedestrian-oriented street network, and successful local businesses.

The public outreach program included numerous workshops, a three-day design charrette, an economic forum, and adoption hearings. The program was crafted to include a diverse range of stakeholders and community members and various opportunities to provide input. The Plan was unanimously adopted by City Council and won the 2016 Form-Based Codes Institute Honorable Mention for a small town development code

View the report here.


LWC Master Plans, 2006 - Present:

  • Benicia, CA, Downtown Mixed-Use Master Plan and Form-Based Code
  • Grover Beach, CA, West Grand Avenue Master Plan
  • King City, CA, West Broadway Master Plan
  • Las Vegas, NV, Downtown Master Plan
  • Merced, CA, Bellevue Community Plan
  • Petaluma, CA, SMART Rail Station Areas: TOD Master Plan
  • Tulare, CA, Downtown Visioning, 2040

LWC Specific Plans, 2006 - Present:

  • Alameda County, CA, Ashland and Cherryland Business District Specific Plan and Code Update
  • Benicia, CA, Lower Arsenal Mixed-Use Specific Plan and Form-Based Code
  • Coastal Community Builders, CA, San Luis Ranch Specific Plan
  • King, CA, Historic Revitalization Plan and Form-Based Code
  • Moraga, CA, Downtown Specific Plan Implementation
  • Rancho Cucamonga, CA, North Eastern Sphere Annexation Project
  • Richmond, CA, Richmond Bay Specific Plan
  • San Luis Obispo County, CA, Oceano Revitalization Plan
  • Sausalito, CA, Marinship Specific Plan Assessment and Evaluation
  • Soledad, CA, Downtown Vision Program and Specific Plan Update
  • Tehachapi, CA, Capital Hills Strategic Plan, Zoning Code and CEQA Review
  • Vallejo, CA, Sonoma Boulevard Specific Plan