During the recent General Plan Update, the Board of Supervisors approved two separate projects to 1) address the lack of parks within certain communities, and 2) provide further zoning protections for designated open space, parks, and recreation uses on publicly owned properties. These two projects are related in their goal of expanding and protecting park space and are therefore being processed concurrently under one amendment package. Concurrent processing will allow for more efficient use of staff time and resources.

Photo of park recreational facility. Credit: Ventura County Parks

Parks and Recreational Facilities Amendment

The Board of Supervisors directed Planning Division staff to amend the Non-Coastal Zoning Ordinance to allow more flexibility when establishing park and recreational facility uses. According to the 2040 General Plan Land Use and Community Character Element, the Parks and Recreation Land Use Designation and Policy LU-1.2 directs the County to provide for parks and recreation facilities and associated recreational uses within areas designated as an Existing Community, within an Area Plan, or in an Area of Interest. These parks and recreation facilities may be developed on private lands that are open to the public and are generally characterized by open spaces, a limited number of buildings, and typically include sports fields, playground equipment, picnic areas, sitting areas, natural areas, trails, and even concession businesses and golf courses.

The amendments will also simplify the permitting process for the development of parks and recreational facilities and include specific development standards to reduce neighborhood impacts.

Open Space – Parks and Recreation Zone AmendmentRancho Simi Photo Credit: Rancho Simi Recreation and Parks District

The Board of Supervisors directed Planning Division staff to amend the Non-Coastal Zoning Ordinance to prepare a zone for open-space oriented parks and recreational uses that applies to publicly owned parcels. This zone will allow compatible parks and recreation uses while also allowing uses required by state or federal law. Eligible parcels for this new zone will be evaluated to inform the amendments but they are not planned to be rezoned.

Project Schedule

Planning Commission and Board of Supervisors Adoption hearings for the Parks and Recreation Use Update are tentatively scheduled to occur in Winter 2022 or Spring 2023. This webpage will be updated as hearing dates are scheduled.

For inquiries on this item, or to sign up for notifications, please contact: Donald Nielsen, Case Planner, at 805-650-4047 via e-mail to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..