Orange Code represents the mission to update and revise our existing Land Development Code, which regulates development and land uses within Orange County. This code update will reflect the county’s current goals outlined in the Mayor’s Regulatory Streamlining Task Force Report and the Mayor’s “Our Home For Life” Sustainability Plan, including identifying infill and redevelopment areas, increasing walkability and transportation options, preserving and enhancing the character of existing neighborhoods, and streamlining the development review process. Check out Background Resources for additional materials that the Orange Code team references


The current Land Development Code, which is a collection of nine chapters found throughout the Orange County Code of Ordinances, was written in 1957 at a time when the focus was auto-oriented development and the most critical concern was separation of uses. Since then, a growing demand for communities including a mix of uses accessible by pedestrian, bicycle, and transit options have the left the current code out of date.

In 2012, Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs’ Streamlining Task Force first pinpointed the need for an analysis and eventual update of the Land Development Code. The Task Force agreed that the County’s code “is not adequate to address many of the issues coming forward in development proposals” and includes “redundancies and internal inconsistencies.”

The need for an update is also supported by the Orange County “Our Home for Life” Sustainability Plan, accepted by the Board of County Commissioners in 2014. This plan outlines specific goals to be achieved by 2040, including increasing walking, biking, and transit trips; creating more usable open space; reducing our carbon footprint; supporting transit-oriented development; reducing potable water use and increasing the urban tree canopy. A major project fulfilling a number of these goals is the Land Development Code Update.


From citrus groves to a premier convention and tourist destination, our history and its diverse physical development patterns must cater to a variety of lifestyles and economic uses. To serve this diversity the Orange Code recognizes six distinctive Market Areas, each with unique character and patterns.

Going beyond land use, and with strong emphasis on the built environment, the new Orange Code will provide standards based on the community’s vision and create a predictable framework for development in Orange County that ensures sustainable communities and a quality of life even better than we have today.