Professional Biography

Alan Murphy Partner

  • San Francisco

    D +1.415.344.7126

    F +1.415.344.7326

    San Francisco

    505 Howard Street, Suite 1000

    San Francisco, CA 94105-3204




Alan Murphy focuses his practice on land use and development matters, including associated environmental review. He secures and defends land use entitlements and counsels clients in preparing development applications, throughout the approval process and in due diligence. Alan has significant experience with general plan and zoning interpretation and amendments, use permits, variances, development agreements, the Density Bonus Law, the Housing Accountability Act, SB 35 streamlining, other state housing legislation, and the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA).

In his practice, Alan strives to identify innovative solutions to complex and politically sensitive development challenges. He routinely interacts with public agency staff and regularly represents clients before city councils and boards of supervisors, planning commissions and local appellate boards. He also represents property owners in zoning enforcement actions.

Among Alan's clients are developers, landowners, educational and financial institutions, and public agencies. His experience includes representing clients in securing entitlements to develop hundreds of new residential units in the San Francisco Bay Area, to redevelop property into three life sciences buildings totaling 595,000 square feet in Foster City, and to redevelop over 500,000 square feet of office and R&D space in Mountain View. Alan also has experience with preparing a citizens' initiative for a major project in the South Bay and analyzing multifamily residential development options on numerous properties between San Francisco and San Jose.

Alan co-chairs CLE International’s annual conference on California land use law and speaks publicly in this area, especially on issues associated with multifamily housing development. Alan served as chair of the Program Committee for the Association of Environmental Professionals 2017 state conference, and he also actively participates in Urban Land Institute initiatives.

California Land Use and Development Report image

Legal Commentary on Planning and Development

Insights into legal issues relating to development and use of land and federal, state and local permitting and approval processes.


Professional Leadership

  • Bay Area Council, Housing Committee
  • Urban Land Institute
  • SPUR - San Francisco Bay Area Planning and Urban Research Association
  • California Association of Environmental Professionals
  • Bar Association of San Francisco

Related Employment

  • Bingham McCutchen LLP, San Francisco, CA, Associate, Land Use and Development Group, 2010 - 2011
  • The City and County of San Francisco, CA, Office of the City Attorney, Legal Intern, Land Use and Environmental Protection Team, 2006


  • Hon. Richard Clifton, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, 2008 - 2009





Bar and Court Admissions

  • California
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
  • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California


  • Yale Law School, J.D., 2008, Editor, The Yale Law Journal, Policy Editor, Yale Law & Policy Review
  • Stanford University, B.A., Political Science, 2003