Priority Development Areas • Priority Conservation Areas
Cities and towns are places for people to live, but they are much more than that. They are places for people to also go to school, shop, work, and play. The neighborhoods that make up the cities and towns vary in character, size, and mix of activities that are offered. This idea is called complete communities and ABAG assists the 101 cities and towns and nine counties with regional planning services supporting local visions in the development of complete communities.
These are two programs that work together to support local communities: Priority Development Areas (PDAs), locally identified infill development areas near transit; and Priority Conservation Areas (PCAs), open spaces in need of protection that support the vitality of the region's natural systems, rural economy and human health. PDAs and PCAs are an integral part of the regional Plan Bay Area, an integrated land use and transportation plan, tackling pressing issues such as accommodating population growth while keeping the region affordable for all our residents, preserving open spaces, protecting our environment, accommodating transportation needs, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
Priority Development Areas (PDAs) are areas that communities identified as possible areas to grow, nominated by the city or town council via resolution. They are generally areas of at least 100 acres where there is local commitment to developing more housing along with amenities and services to meet the day-to-day needs of residents in a pedestrian-friendly environment served by transit. To be eligible to become a PDA, an area had to be within an existing community, near existing or planned fixed transit or served by comparable bus service, and planned for more housing.PDA Application Form
To share information about the Priority Development Areas (PDA) throughout the San Francisco Bay Area, ABAG Planning and Research staff, with input from cities and towns, has launched an updated PDA Showcase.
- Highlights local planning efforts to create complete communities
- Provides information about each area, including maps, key facts, implementation needs, and a description of the goals and vision for the area.
The growth envisioned through these PDAs is based in large part on local aspirations and community context. The PDAs reflect the diversity of the communities in the Bay Area. To explore each PDA, click here.
Priority Conservation Areas (PCAs) are open spaces that provide agricultural, natural resource, scenic, recreational, and/or ecological values and ecosystem functions. These areas are identified through consensus by local jurisdictions and park/open space districts as lands in need of protection due to pressure from urban development or other factors. PCAs are categorized by four designations: Natural Landscapes, Agricultural Lands, Urban Greening, and Regional Recreation.
As of 2015, 165 PCAs representing a variety of landscapes in all nine Bay Area counties have been adopted by the ABAG Executive Board. Projects located within these areas are eligible for funding through the One Bay Area Grants (OBAG) program.
For more information about PCAs, visit http://abag.ca.gov/priority/conservation/.
Plan Bay Area is an integrated land use and transportation plan that tackles pressing issues such as accommodating population growth while keeping the region affordable for all our residents, preserving open spaces, protecting our environment, accommodating transportation needs, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Plan Bay Area was released in July 2013 in coordination with the Regional Transportation Plan and Regional Housing Need Allocation for local jurisdictions. More information about Plan Bay Area is available here.
By engaging local governments, communities and regionwide stakeholders in ways to build a better Bay Area over the next 30 years, Plan Bay Areais currently being implemented by ABAG and regional partners (the Metropolitan Transportation Commission-MTC, the Bay Area Air Quality Management District-BAAQMD, and the Bay Conservation and Development Commission-BCDC).
Plan in the Bay Area relied upon a long-term series of key planning programs which were administered by ABAG in cooperation in cooperation with MTC, BAAQMD, and BCDC. These programs encouraged focused growth through a voluntary, incentive-based development and conservation strategy. They were important opportunities for local governments and the regional agencies to work together to create complete, livable communities that are more efficient, equitable, and environmentally sustainable.
Additional information is available here.