Ventura Rebuilds

The City streamlined the rebuilding process.

by City staff

Signs of rebuilding are popping up in the neighborhoods impacted by the Thomas Fire. As of September 4th, 32 Thomas Fire building permits have been issued with another wave coming as 131 homes are currently in plan check review awaiting approval.

In addition to the building permits, 311 repair permits have been issued as well as 199 temporary water permits. “We are spending quality time with residents and architects to quickly work through issues and ensure that their homes are approved with no extra time or costs,” said Community Development Director Jeffrey Lambert.

Individual meetings are vital to promoting clear communication between the City, the resident and the architect. In fact, the Planning Division has held more than 250 appointments with Thomas Fire rebuild applicants and continues to provide personalized assistance throughout the process.

Given the large-scale devastation created by the Thomas Fire, the City streamlined the rebuilding process by adopting an ordinance intended to facilitate expedited redesign, repair, and replacement of structures within the proposed Thomas Fire Rebuild Overlay Zone that were damaged or demolished by the Thomas Fire.

In February, the Ventura City Council adopted an Emergency Ordinance to expedite the review and first plan check of Thomas Fire building permit applications within fourteen business days (the turn-around time is currently taking ten business days). The City Council also approved more than $1M in contract services to retain architects, civil engineers and other professionals to provide this important service.

Helping those affected with the rebuilding process is a top priority for the City of Ventura. The Community Development Department is working diligently with parcel owners to build as safely, and quickly as possible. Property owners, with their design team, are encouraged to call (805) 677-3901 to make a Plan Check Submittal Pre-screen appointment with officials in the Building and Safety Division. For more information visit

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