Regulatory Teams

A BCDC permit is required for most activities proposed within the Commission’s jurisdiction, within the Bay and along the shoreline. The work requiring a permit includes the placement of fill, extraction of materials, and substantial changes of use. The regulatory teams oversee permitting, compliance, and enforcement of activities permitted by the Commission.

BCDC has five specialized teams within its Regulatory Affairs Division. Depending on the type of policy issues raised by a proposed project, the project will be assigned to one of the five specialized teams as generally described below. Please note, while the team descriptions include typical assignments, projects maybe assigned to staff on other teams with expertise or available capacity.

Bay Resources Team

The Bay Resources team reviews and analyzes proposals for projects involving the placement of structures or fill within San Francisco Bay, or that have the potential to affect sensitive natural Bay habitats.

Project types include:

  • Habitat restoration and creation projects, including wetland restoration and mitigation banks;
  • Environmental remediation projects;
  • Docks, piers, jetties, and other projects involving construction, repairs, or replacement of facilities within the Bay;
  • Flood management and shoreline protection projects, including seawalls, riprap revetments, levees, and living shorelines;
  • Infrastructure located at least partly within the Bay, or with the potential for adverse impacts to sensitive habitat; and
  • Projects (multi-benefit habitat restoration projects that are eligible for Measure AA funding).

Shoreline Development Team

The Shoreline Development team reviews and analyzes proposals for many projects and activities on the shoreline of the San Francisco Bay.

Project types include:

  • Recreation projects, including waterfront parks and open spaces, segments of the San Francisco Bay Trail, and recreational marinas;
  • Residential development, including new multi-family and single-family residences, remodels, and additions;
  • Office and retail development;
  • Certain industrial development;
  • Most transportation projects, including bike and pedestrian facilities, roadwork, and ferry terminals;
  • New large-scale special events, including concerts, festivals, and other time-limited events;
  • Changes of use, including changes to the general category of use of a structure or land, a substantial change in the intensity of use at a location, and certain subdivisions of land; and
  • Infrastructure located in upland areas and that does not have significant potential for adverse impacts to sensitive habitat.

Sediment Management Team

The Sediment Management team reviews and analyzes proposals for projects involving dredging, sand mining, flood protection, and habitat restoration. Team members collaborate with agencies and stakeholders regarding regional sediment management in the Bay Region on a planning level for ecosystem and adaptation purposes. This team implements the Long Term Management Strategy (LTMS) for the Placement of Dredged Material in the Bay Region Management Plan and is staff to the Dredged Material Management Office (DMMO). The Sediment Management Team conducts work related to:

  • Navigation dredging in federal channels, ports and oil terminal berths, marinas, and local berths;
  • Aggregate mining - sand and oyster shell mining for construction, and agriculture and nutritional supplements;
  • Habitat restoration and creation projects - subtidal and wetland restoration, and living shorelines projects;
  • Environmental remediation projects;
  • Flood protection and management; and
  • Regional Sediment Management.

Enforcement Team

 The Enforcement team is responsible for enforcing BCDC regulations and policies related to activities within BCDC’s jurisdiction. Among other statutory and permit condition violations, the team investigates allegations related to unauthorized Bay fill or construction, obstruction or misuse of public access amenities, unauthorized development in the Suisun Marsh. To resolve certain types of violations defined by regulation, the Enforcement team can impose standardized fines and issue new or amended permits. To resolve more harmful, complex cases or cases in which violators have not acted in good faith to resolve matters, staff can bring enforcement cases before the Enforcement Committee for recommendations to the full Commission, including but not limited to the issuance of cease and desist orders. 

Engineering and Design Team

The Engineering and Design team provides in-house technical expertise to the staff and permit applicants on matters related to the safety of fills and public access.The Staff Engineer is a certified professional engineer who provides guidance on the engineering of in-water structures, coastal engineering, and climate adaptation.

The Bay Development Design Analysts are licensed landscape architects who provide guidance on urban design, landscape architecture, public access, recreation, signage, planting, special events, and public space activation.  The technical team works with staff and project teams through all stages of permitting, compliance, and enforcement.  The work involves design review, negotiating permit conditions, plan review, site inspections, maintaining design guidelines for shoreline spaces, signage, and planting, as well as supporting BCDC’s planning staff on related projects.  

The Senior Bay Development Design Analyst and the Senior Engineer also serve as the secretaries to BCDC’s Design Review Board and BCDC’s Engineering Criteria Review Board.