Pre-Development Meetings

Pre-Development Meetings

Your Business Liaison can coordinate a Pre-development meeting, assembling a team of plan check professionals from key departments to review your tenant improvement or new development plans before they are formally submitted to the City. The Business First Team is there to provide guidance on California Building Code, Fire Code, Zoning and infrastructure improvements.  They can also provide preliminary cost information that will help you prepare a realistic project budget. For more information or to set up a Pre-Development meeting please contact Sherry Shimshock at 951-826-2433 or

The goal of a Pre-Development meeting is for you to come away with a good understanding of the permitting process, your project specific requirements and a reasonable, customized timeline for completion. This roundtable review can save a business money and time by reducing the number of plan check revisions needed and eliminating unnecessary delays in the permitting and inspection process.

Is my project eligible for a pre-development meeting?

For a pre-development meeting to be successful, the project must meet certain criteria. An eligible project is one in which:

  • The customer has done initial research to ensure that the project is viable. At a minimum this would include having a site selected and vetted through conversations with Economic Development and Planning staff to determine that the project is legally permitted or can acquire the necessary permits to legally operate in the chosen location.
  • The customer has assembled a design team for the project that will be attending the meeting. Depending on the complexity of the project this often includes architects, engineers, consultants and a general contractor.
  • The customer has draft site plans ready for review including critical project information for reference and review by the Business First Team.

All pre-development meeting requests are scheduled at the discretion of the Business First Team.

How do I prepare for a Pre-Development meeting and what can I expect?

The pre-development meeting is a roundtable preliminary review process that lasts approximately 1 hour.  No elaborate presentation or company PowerPoint is expected at a Pre-Development meeting.  Your design team is introduced to the Business First Team and you are given an opportunity to briefly introduce your business and plans for Riverside.  Next the assembled team will take turns reviewing the plans one department at a time engaging the design team in discussion, providing advice and answering questions.

Reminder: the more detail you can provide about your project, the better the feedback you will get from the team.

To Prepare:

  •  Scheduling your meeting: expect a window of 5 to 7 business days when scheduling. This lead time gives the permitting team an opportunity to review the project before the meeting.
  • Your site plan:  provide an electronic version of your site plan a minimum of 3-5 days prior to your meeting. On the day of the meeting, bring either one large (30’’ x 42’’ is good) or several smaller copies of the site plan that can be viewed by all parties around the table. Whether this is a new project from the ground up or you are moving into an existing building, you will want to note interior and exterior improvement plans as well as any upgrades to mechanical, electrical or plumbing.
  • Pre-meeting questions:  your Business Liaison will provide you with a short list of questions when scheduling the meeting. You should respond to all questions that apply within 3-5 days of the meeting. Requested information may include items such as number of employees, anticipated hours of operation, questions about power and water needs, outside storage and expected traffic flow.
  • Design/construction team must be present.
  • Photos of the site are helpful; especially those that give an aerial view or that show the views of the property from the street.
  • If you have a brochure about your business that you’d like to share with the team, that is welcome.