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Nadia L. Costa

Shareholder, Walnut Creek
Tel: 925.935.9400

Nadia L. Costa

Shareholder, Walnut Creek | Newport Beach

Tel: 925.935.9400


Nadia Costa is a shareholder in the firm’s Walnut Creek and Newport Beach offices. Her practice centers on land use and local government law, specializing in the processing and implementation of land use entitlements. Nadia has extensive entitlement experience in a wide range of projects, with a particular emphasis on complex, mixed-use, urban infill, and master-planned developments. She regularly counsels landowners, developers, and public agencies in all aspects of land use processing, including a variety of areas such as compliance with the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA); obtaining approval of general plan amendments and specific plans; assisting property owners and agencies in the formation of various special districts including community facilities districts and geological hazard abatement districts (GHADs); planned development zoning, and tentative and final subdivision maps; addressing annexation and other local agency formation commission (LAFCO) issues; as well as drafting, negotiating and obtaining approval of agreements dealing with vested rights, the disposition and development of property owned by public agencies, public infrastructure, affordable housing, and agricultural and habitat mitigation.

Nadia is Co-Chair of Miller Starr Regalia’s Land Use Practice Group. She also serves as a member of the Council for the State and Local Government Section of the American Bar Association, and is on the Board of Directors for the California Association of GHADs.

J.D., University of California, Berkeley, School of Law (2001)

M.S.W., University of California, Los Angeles (1996)

B.A., University of California, Santa Barbara (1992)


  • “Water Planning in California’s Continuing Drought: Impacts on Agriculture, Municipalities, and Other Water Users,” The Seminar Group, Napa, CA, March 1, 2017
  • “The Intersection of Land Use and Affordable Housing,” Moderator, ABA, State and Local Government Section, October 2015
  • “What’s Preventing Developers from Developing in California?,” ICSC Northern California Idea Exchange, Napa, CA, October 28, 2013
  • "Developing the "PDA" (Priority Development Area) of the Sustainable Communities Strategy," ICSC Northern California Alliance Program, Sacramento, CA, February 21, 2013
  • “CEQA: Basics and New Developments,” The State Bar of California 31st Annual Real Property Law Section Retreat, Lake Tahoe, CA, 2012
  • “Inclusionary Housing in the Wake of Palmer and Patterson,” Land Use Conference: San Francisco, CA, 2010
  • “Reconciling SB 375 and the BAAQMD Guidelines,” Moderator, ULI Presentation, 2010
  • “CEQA Legislation, Litigation, Mitigation and More,” The Second Annual Seminar on the California Environmental Quality Act, Los Angeles, California, August 2006 and San Francisco, California, September 2006


  • “Inclusionary Housing Programs: Local Governments Respond to California’s Housing Crisis,” Boston College Environmental Affairs Law Review, Vol. 30, No. 3, 2003 (co-author)
  • “California’s Response to the Affordable Housing Crisis,” American Bar Association Land Use Institute: Planning, Regulation, Litigation, Eminent Domain, and Compensation, August 25-27, 2005 (co-author)
  • “Recent Developments in Land Use,” The Urban Lawyer: Planning and Zoning, Vol. 35, No. 4, Fall 2003 (co-author)
  • “Inclusionary Housing Ordinance Survives Constitutional Challenge in Post-Nollan-Dolan Era: Homebuilders Association of Northern California v. City of Napa,” Land use Law & Zoning Digest, Vol. 54, No. 8, August 2002 (co-author)


  • American Bar Association (ABA), State and Local Government Section - Council Member
  • Building Industry Association (BIA)
    • Professional Women in Building (PWB) Council
  • California Association of GHADs – Board Member
  • International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC)
  • STAND! For Families Free of Violence – Board Member
  • Urban Land Institute (ULI)


  • Super Lawyers Northern California (2009 2011)
  • East Bay Business Times – “40 Under 40” (2006)
  • University of California, Los Angeles – Outstanding Academic Achievement Award