Most new developments and exterior remodeling projects require design review approval prior to the city issuing a building permit for proposed construction. Please review the Downtown Design Guidelines for additional information.
Projects located within the Historic Overlay District (VMC 20.510) or properties on the local or national historic register may also need to work through the Historic Preservation process. Please contact the planning department for additional information.
Design review for the downtown area of the city of Vancouver was established in 1978 to assist architects and developers in their efforts to ensure quality design in their projects as well as compatibility of development projects with existing developments and city goals. In the past, the city used a Design Review Committee to review projects. Currently these projects are reviewed by city planners.