Rebuild Ordinance

Building plans on a table with a hammer, nails and measuring tape







The Planning Office and the Office of Development Services have collaborated with community representatives to develop a revised, updated definition of 'rebuild' as a means of categorizing residential alteration projects. In December, the Board of Supervisors adopted the revised ordinance, which became effective on January 13, 2023.

For a given project, a 'rebuild' classification means the proposed alterations are significant enough to treat the project as a new residence. It is a factor in determining the applicability of certain requirements and procedures, including building site approval, city annexation, CALGreen building requirements, water-efficient landscaping requirements, fire sprinklers requirements, and floodplain management standards.

The revised ‘rebuild’ definition is based on the magnitude of overall changes to all walls. There are also new application submittal and process changes involved.


Following information shall be provided and submitted when applying for Building Permit:

  • Prepare and submit demolition plan as described in section C1-22(c) of the ordinance. All walls shall be labeled and a table documenting the lineal footages of existing, demolished and remaining walls shall be included on the plan.
  • Complete “Santa Clara County REBUILD Threshold” table and add table to the Cover Sheet or Demolition Plan sheet.
  • Complete and submit “Acknowledgement of Scope for Alteration Projects”.

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