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Sonoma Developmental Center Specific Plan

Dyett & Bhatia is leading a Specific Plan for reimaging the 945-acre former Sonoma Developmental Center (SDC) in the heart of Sonoma Valley, with a 180-acre core campus surrounding by hundreds of acres of some of most picturesque and resource-valuable open space in Sonoma County. The state’s first developmental center and the valley’s largest employer in its heyday, the center was closed by the State of California, which owns the entire property, in 2018.

The site contains 180 buildings, including some on the natural register, almost all in severe disrepair or unsuitable for contemporary uses. The Specific Plan will consider land uses, transportation, economic viability, historic preservation, infrastructure, and conservation of the site’s important natural resources to further State of California’s priorities of new housing, open space conservation, and financial sustainability.

To further community engagement during plan preparation during the pandemic, Dyett & Bhatia prepared a virtual tour, hosted several topical forums, and online surveys, and the first community workshop attracted more than 250 participants. Existing conditions assessment and a Draft Vision and Guiding Principles have been completed.

The Specific Plan was adopted in December 2022.



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