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Urban Studies & Planning: San Diego Planning Resources

Recommended resources for doing research in urban studies and planning

What's in the Library?

The UCSD Library has many City of San Diego documents and publications. They include city and community plans, financial and voting records, environmental impact reports, city council records, reports, and more. All of these publications can be found using UC Library Search and most can be checked out.

The Library's Special Collections has more historical San Diego materials that can be used in the Library; others, such as the History of UC San Diego, are digitized and available online. 

photo: sunset view looking west along a San Diego highway from an overpass

Other Libraries

San Diego Public Library, Special Collections
330 Park Blvd
San Diego, CA 92101
(619) 236-5800
See Library’s website for hours

San Diego History Center
Casa de Balboa, lower level
1649 El Prado, Balboa Park
(619) 232-6203
See website for hours & prices

Local Governments of San Diego Google Custom Search Engine

This custom Google search box searches only websites of government entities in San Diego County, including cities, county and SANDAG. Use this instead of the regular Google interface when searching for San Diego government information for more relevant results. Created by Annelise Sklar.

City of San Diego

City of San Diego is the official web presence of the San Diego City Government. There are many interesting and useful resources on this site and it is worth exploring at some length. See below for specific pages of particular interest.

San Diego City, County & Neighborhood Plans

San Diego planning documents are excellent sources of information for the San Diego region. The most recent community plans for the City of San Diego can be found online on the City's website.

Selected current and historical plans are located in the San Diego documents collection in the Geisel Library reference area. The general call number range is C400.P71. Use keyword searching in UC Library Search to locate plans in specific neighborhoods, e.g. type Pacific Beach plan to retrieve planning documents for Pacific Beach. Be sure to look at the subject headings to find additional related items. You may also wish to try searching under some of the following government agencies:

  • San Diego Association of Governments
  • Centre City Development Corporation
  • San Diego Dept of Planning and Land Use
  • San Diego Calif City Council
  • San Diego Calif Planning Dept
  • San Diego Chamber of Commerce

Other Useful Local Resources

SANDAG, San Diego Association of Governments

See especially the “Demographics & Other Data” and “Maps & GIS” sections. Of particular interest:

  • Data Surfer allows downloading of a variety of data, including estimates and forecasts, giving the user control over what variables and geographic areas to download.

San Diego Section of the American Planning Association