The first stop when you are considering a project is to go to the website for the Office of Historic Resources. There is a section entitled "Historic Preservation Overlay Zones" that will give you access to everything you need to know, including a helpful list of HPOZ terms and an FAQ. The Preservation Plan, the explanation of Contributor and Non-Contributor status, the fee schedule for major work, what Conforming and Non-Conforming work means, and how to present your project are all available there.
The changes to the new Citywide Ordinance have made the process more efficient, with many projects, including small additions, being "Delegated." Other types of delegated work can be found here.
Our Planner is Bradley Furuya. The best way to reach Bradley is by email, since a great deal of his work consists of evening meetings. Bradley's email is Bradley.Furuya@lacity.org. Because Planning is under-staffed, please be patient - it can take a week or more to get a reply.
If you just want the Board to see what you have in mind and offer suggestions, you can request a Consultation with the Board. This gives you free access to a wealth of resources, including a licensed architect skilled in Preservation and a group of people with experience in design, history, code compliance, and construction. Contact Bradley Furuya to arrange a consultation.