Robia Crisp

Robin R. Baral

Senior Counsel

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Land Use
Land Use

Robin Baral has more than a decade of experience practicing land use, environmental, and water law. Robin guides his clients, including private developers and public agencies, through nearly every aspect of the land use planning, development, and entitlement process and the myriad of associated local, state, and federal approvals that are often required for land development and public infrastructure. Robin has extensive experience working with developers and local agencies to negotiate development agreements, process specific plans, complex entitlement packages, and conduct environmental reviews under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). He is also adept at harnessing recent changes to the State Planning and Zoning Law to expedite permitting and development approvals.

Robin has worked with clients on planning, permitting, and public financing of projects totaling in the hundreds of millions of dollars, such as groundwater and surface water treatment plants, solar and wind energy facilities, wastewater treatment plants, water bottling facilities, rail trans-loading facilities, and waste disposal facilities. Robin's environmental expertise is focused on helping clients develop permitting strategies for new and emerging technologies. He is particularly skilled at providing strategic counsel in response to state legislative and regulatory mandates, ranging from housing policies to water management, waste disposal, and recycling requirements.

His substantial knowledge in public finance compliments his practice specialty well. Robin works well with clients and bond counsel to establish tax and financing solutions while assisting with the review of rate-making proceedings, voter-approved taxes, the adoption of impact fees, and more.

Representative Work

Represented a railroad company to expedite environmental permitting under the Clean Water Act, CEQA, and the Porter-Cologne Water Quality Control Act.

Represented a Joint Powers Authority as a reviewing agency in connection with the processing of a combined 2,000-acre residential and mixed-use specific plan and an 8,000-acre industrial area plan.

Represented a city in renegotiating a development agreement for a 600-acre master development plan involving five different market-rate and affordable-housing developers.

Represented a developer in the entitlement of a 690-acre specific plan consisting of up to 2,700 units and 250,000 square feet of commercial space, with onsite mitigation of biological resources through a detailed open space preservation and parks plan.

Represented a city in proceedings before the federal Surface Transportation Board to defeat a preemption determination in connection with an application for a conditional use permit to develop a crude-by-rail transfer facility.


"HCD Reviews Coastal Height Limits," Land Use Law Alert (August 2022)

"Old East Davis Decision Preserves the Deference Granted to Cities in Interpreting Subjective Standards," Land Use Law Alert (February 2022)

“California Housing Crisis Persists Despite Legislative Breakthroughs,” Real Property Law Reporter (January 2022)

"2021 Legislative Update: Housing Advocates Score Key Wins," Land Use Law Alert (October 2021)

"AB 701 Continues the Recent Trend in California to Regulate Warehouse Distribution Centers," Land Use Law Alert (October 2021)

"An In-Depth Look at the Oakland A's Proposed New Stadium Project," Land Use Law Alert (September 2021)

"A Recent Ruling Involving Unlined Landfills Highlights the Pitfalls of Relying on Categorical Exemptions under CEQA," Land Use Law Alert (September 2021)

"A Draft Technical Advisory Offers Guidance on Streamlining CEQA Review for Sustainable Transportation," Land Use Law Alert (July 2021)

"Records Retention Policies and CEQA Compliance," Urban Water Institute Newsletter (October 2020)

"California Land Use Practice, Chapter 21: Land Use Litigation," Continuing Education of the Bar (2020-2021)

See All Publications


Northern California Super LawyersLand Use, Zoning, Environmental, Real Estate (2021-2022)

Northern California Rising Star, SuperLawyers (2015-2020)

Professional Affiliations

Urban Land Institute–Sacramento District, Housing Committee Chair (2021-present), Member (2012-present)

Solid Waste Association of North America, Member (2017-present)

Academic Distinction

California Department of Justice, Division of Public Rights, Land Law section, Law School Honors Program (2009)


J.D., Loyola Law School Los Angeles (2010)

B.A., University of California, Berkeley (2004)

Admissions And Courts





916-491-3052 Direct Phone
916-491-3085 Fax

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