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Menlo Park, California: ADU Regulations

City or County:

Menlo Park, California

Date Updated:



Attached & Detached: all zoning which allows single-family, multifamily or mixed use which permits residential use.

JADUS: permitted in all single-family districts.

Types of ADUs:

Attached, Detached, Junior



Lot Size:


Maximum ADU Floor Area:

Attached or interior ADU: May not exceed fifty percent (50%) of an existing primary home or 1,000 sq.ft., whichever is greater.

Detached: 1,000 sq.ft.

Lot Coverage:

May not exceed permitted building coverage established by zoning district in which lot is located.


Max 2 bedrooms.


No min/max.


Require separate kitchen facilities (permanent range, counters, refrigerator, sink).

A JADU shall include cooking facility with appliances and a food preparation counter and storage cabinets that are of reasonable size in relation to the size of the JADU.


Max 1 bathroom.

Note: Drainage and sewer connections should be assessed on a project by project basis.


An ADU must provide one (1) off-street parking space, covered or uncovered, and may be located in the front, side or rear setback., except if:

(1) If off-street parking is removed to allow for an ADU in a single-family district, the on-site parking need not be replaced.

(2) If the garage is converted to an ADU, no replacement parking for the primary dwelling in a single-family district is required.

State parking exceptions apply (public transit, historic district, no permits for ADU occupants, car share, attached/conversion/junior), as well as when a garage, carport, or covered parking structure is demolished to build ADU.


Attached: 4’ side and rear requirements
Detached: 4’ side and rear for less than 800 sq.ft.
A detached ADU greater than eight 800 sq.ft. in size shall meet the side setback applicable to the primary dwelling and not encroach into a 10’ rear yard setback.

No setbacks shall be required for ADU conversions of (1) existing living space in the primary dwelling, (2) accessory buildings constructed in the same location and to the same dimensions, (3) attached or detached garages in single-family neighborhoods

Note: Fire Department regulations should be assessed on a project by project basis.


Attached: must comply with daylight plane requirements and cannot exceed primary residence of underlying zoning district

Detached up to 800 sq.ft: 16’, exempt from daylight plan requirements

Detached greater than 800 sq.ft.: 17’ and must comply with the daylight plane that shall begin at a horizontal line 9 feet, 6 inches above the average natural grade at a line 3 feet from the side property lines and shall slope inwards at a 45 degree angle. There are no permitted intrusions into the daylight plane. "Average natural grade" means the average of the highest and lowest points of the natural grade of the portion of the lot directly below a line 3 feet from the side property line



Rear Yard Coverage:



Colors, materials, textures and residential design similar to main dwelling; must comply with all applicable development regulations for zoning district and building code requirements.

Note: Historic Neighborhoods or Districts should be assessed on a project by project basis.



Source Code:

Important Note: Rules and regulations are updated and changed frequently. It’s one of our jobs to be up to speed and navigate those regulations. Let us know if our website isn’t up to date or if you have any information that could help. Cheers!