Mammoth Lakes, California

Profiled 3-19-24

Mammoth Lakes, California, population 7,191 (2020), is located on the eastern slope of the Sierra Nevada Mountains roughly 100 miles northeast of Fresno. It is a popular second home and vacation destination due to numerous outdoor recreation attractions including Mammoth Mountain Ski Resort.

The 2007 General Plan includes an action item to prepare a transfer of development rights ordinance to enhance general plan goals and, specifically, to protect environmentally sensitive areas.

Section 17.04.020 of the zoning code calls for conservation and protection of natural resources, natural beauty, and significant environmental amenities. In 2014, the zoning code was amended to include Sec. 17.32.040 – Open Space/Stream Corridor Protection Overlay Zone (OSSC). This zone aims to protect sensitive stream and drainage courses, to preserve environmentally sensitive areas, to protect water quality, and preserve wetland habitat. In this overlay, only single-family dwellings on individual lots are allowed without a conditional use permit (CUP). Other uses allowed by the underlying zoning can only be approved through CUP. By CUP, any development rights associated with private property contained within this use classification may be transferred to other private land holdings.