In 2015, the City of Sacramento announced an initiative to facilitate the construction of 10,000 housing units in Sacramento’s Central City by 2025, spurring the need for a specific plan, an environmental impact report (EIR), updated design guidelines and development standards, and a historic resource survey.

Why does this project matter?

The Central City Specific Plan (CCSP) will inspire the continued growth and evolution of Sacramento’s Central City, drawing upon the ideas and values of residents, business owners, elected officials, staff, and other stakeholders.

What is ESA doing to help?

ESA led a multi-disciplinary team to prepare the Sacramento Central City Specific Plan (CCSP), design guidelines update, zoning code amendment, associated EIR, and related technical studies and entitlements.

To foster the continued growth of housing, jobs, and amenities, the CCSP team developed the vision, strategies, and actions to inspire Downtown Sacramento to reach its full potential as a modern, inclusive, interconnected, and mature urban center.

The CCSP outlines how 10,000 housing units will be realized, where the units will be located, what type of residential units the market will support, and desired amenities. The plan also provides design guidance for housing and public spaces, and a detailed evaluation and treatment of historic resources. As part of the CCSP, the team integrated Sacramento’s planned streetcar and other public transit options, infrastructure improvements, and financing details.

Particular emphasis was placed on removing barriers and streamlining the planning and environmental review processes to support residential development and encourage transit-oriented development along the future streetcar alignment and throughout downtown.

The project also included development of a web-based application (Housing NOW!) that provides easy access to information on all housing opportunity sites and will serve as a way to monitor ongoing progress.

Connect with our team

Testimonials icon

"Everywhere you look, new projects and burgeoning retail and entertainment experience are breathing energy and life into downtown."

Downtown Sacramento Partnership


Client City of Sacramento

Location Sacramento, CA


2018 Award of Excellence in Economic Planning and Development, American Planning Association, Sacramento Valley Section

2018 Award of Excellence in Economic Planning and Development, American Planning Association California

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