Preservation Planning for Small Cities

This introduction to planning for small cities will examine the basic process of forming a preservation program for small, local governments in California. Participants will first review four critical steps in the process, from conducting a survey of historic properties, to drafting and passing a preservation ordinance, deciding on a type of preservation decision-making body, and ultimately become recognized as a Certified Local Government. Following a basic overview of the process, participants will look at lessons learned for three cities in California that formed successful preservation programs. The webinar will conclude with a look at the intersection between preservation and planning by examining ways in which the barriers between preservation and planning can be broken down.


  • Shannon Lauchner, Historian II, Local Government Unit California Office of Historic Preservation
  • Geoffrey Starns, AICP, Planning Manager   City of Temple City
  • Cathy Wahlstrom, Principal Planner City of Ontario

Learning Objectives:

  1. Review four critical steps in developing a robust local preservation program.
  2. Recognize and identify the roles of different actors in preservation planning, from grass roots groups, to planning departments, to historic property owners.
  3. Identify successful preservation programs in other small cities or rural areas in California.
  4. Engage with ways to integrate preservation into broader planning goals or initiatives.

Continuing Education Credits:AIA, AICP, ASLA