Chapter 17.72
OFF-STREET PARKING AND LOADING REQUIREMENTS

Sections:

17.72.010    Intent.

17.72.020    Off-street parking design standards.

17.72.030    Number of off-street parking spaces.

17.72.040    Off-street loading design requirements.

17.72.050    Off-street loading berth requirements.

17.72.060    Joint use of required parking spaces for the downtown business (DB), waterfront commercial (WC), general business (B-2), commercial (C-1) and residential and business (RB-1) districts abutting Harborview Drive and North Harborview Drive and within the View Basin neighborhood design area.

17.72.070    Repealed.

17.72.075    Special provisions for existing buildings with existing nonresidential uses in the downtown business (DB), waterfront commercial (WC), waterfront Millville (WM), general business (B-2), commercial (C-1) and residential and business (RB-1) districts abutting Harborview Drive and North Harborview Drive and within the View Basin neighborhood design area.

17.72.080    Joint use of required parking spaces for mixed use developments within the RB-2, B-1, B-2, C-1, DB, PCD-C, PCD-BP, PCD-NB, ED and MUD zoning districts.

17.72.090    Electric vehicle charging station spaces.

17.72.010 Intent.

A. Off-Street Parking. “Off-street parking” is defined as parking on privately owned property. The regulations concerning off-street parking are intended to reduce the need for parking on streets and the traffic congestion and hazards caused thereby, and to provide for off-street parking adequate to each type of development, both in terms of amount and location. All parking space requirements set forth in this chapter shall be met prior to the occupancy of buildings and shall be satisfactorily maintained for each use listed in this chapter.

B. Off-Street Loading. To avoid damage to the streets and hazards to the pedestrians and congestion on the streets, it is required that spaces in the form of off-street loading berths be provided on the same lot as the building to be served by the delivery or loading of goods, and that such berths be adequate in size and number to provide the service needed without affecting adjacent properties, public streets or public rights-of-way. (Ord. 573 § 2, 1990).

17.72.020 Off-street parking design standards.

A. The off-street parking required for the uses specified herein shall be for use only by the automobiles of the residents, employees and customers of the activity served by the off-street parking. Required off-street parking spaces shall be unencumbered and available at all times, except in cases of joint use specifically allowed by this chapter.

B. Off-street parking requirements shall be met on the same lot as the building served by the off-street parking or on a lot that is within 500 feet of the building or facility served by the off-street parking and is specially reserved for the service of such building. Notwithstanding the above, off-street parking facilities for independent and separate buildings and uses may be provided collectively on a common lot if these facilities are not less than the total requirements of the independent and separate uses, and if all other requirements are met.

C. All off‑street parking spaces shall be at least eight feet in width and at least 18 feet in length, both exclusive of access drives, yards, and ramps. Such spaces shall have a vertical clearance of at least seven feet. Lines demarcating parking spaces may be drawn at various angles in relation to curbs or aisles; provided, that the parking space so created contains within it the rectangular area required by this chapter. Parking area aisle widths shall conform to the following table, which varies the width requirement according to the angle of parking:

 

Parking Angle

Aisle Width

30°

45°

60°

90°

One Way

12'

12'

15'

18'

20'

Two Way

19'

20'

21'

23'

24'

Driveways shall not be less than 12 feet in width for one way traffic and 20 feet in width for two-way traffic.

D. Off‑street parking spaces may be located in any required yard unless otherwise indicated in GHMC Title 17.

E. All off-street parking spaces and access areas shall be surfaced with portland cement concrete, asphaltic concrete paving, or porous paving to the standards established by the city including but not limited to the city’s Stormwater Management and Site Development Manual (Chapter 14.20 GHMC).

F. All open parking area with four or more parking spaces shall be effectively screened by a wall, a fence or landscaping from any institutional or public building and from any property in a residential district. (Ord. 1307 § 53, 2014; Ord. 1231 § 1, 2012; Ord. 1171 § 1, 2009; Ord. 710 § 71, 1996; Ord. 573 § 2, 1990).

17.72.030 Number of off-street parking spaces.

The following is the number of off-street parking spaces required for each of the uses identified below:

Use

Required Parking 

Dwelling, single-family

Two off-street parking spaces per dwelling unit.

Dwelling, duplex

Two off-street parking spaces per dwelling unit.

Dwelling, triplex

One off-street parking space for each studio unit, 1.5 off-street parking spaces for each one bedroom unit, and two off-street parking spaces for units with two or more bedrooms.

Dwelling, fourplex

One off-street parking space for each studio unit, 1.5 off-street parking spaces for each one bedroom unit, and two off-street parking spaces for units with two or more bedrooms.

Dwelling, multiple-family

One off-street parking space for each studio unit, 1.5 off-street parking spaces for each one bedroom unit, and two off-street parking spaces for units with two or more bedrooms.

Accessory apartment

One off-street parking space per accessory apartment in addition to parking required for primary dwelling unit.

Family day care provider

Two off-street parking spaces.

Home occupation

One off-street parking space in addition to parking required for any other use; two parking spaces shall be required if the occupation requires customers or clients to visit the premises at any time.

Adult family home

Two off-street parking spaces.

Independent living facility

One off-street parking space for every four beds based on maximum capacity as determined by the International Building Code.1

Assisted living facility

One off-street parking space for every four beds based on maximum capacity as determined by the International Building Code.1

Skilled nursing facility

One off-street parking space for every four beds based on maximum capacity as determined by the International Building Code.1

Hospital

One off-street parking space for every two beds based on maximum capacity as determined by the International Building Code.

School, primary

One off-street parking space for every five seats in the main auditorium or assembly room.

School, secondary

One off-street parking space for every four seats in the main auditorium or assembly room, or three off-street parking spaces for every classroom plus one additional off-street parking space for each staff member or employee, whichever is greater.

School, higher educational

One off-street parking space for every possible four seats in the classrooms based on maximum capacity as determined by the International Building Code.

School, vocational/trade

One off-street parking space for every possible four seats in the classrooms based on maximum capacity as determined by the International Building Code.

Government administrative office

One off-street parking space for every 300 square feet of gross floor area.

Public/private services

For libraries: One off-street parking space for every 1,000 square feet of gross floor area; for police stations and fire stations: one off-street parking space for every 300 square feet of gross floor area; for maintenance and storage facilities: one off-street parking space for every 1,000 square feet of gross floor area.

Religious worship, house of

One off-street parking space for every four fixed seats in the facility’s largest assembly area. For a fixed seat configuration consisting of pews or benches, the seating capacity shall be computed upon not less than 18 linear inches of pew or bench length per seat. For a flexible configuration consisting of moveable chairs, each seven square feet of the gross floor area to be occupied by such chairs shall be considered as a seat.

Museum

One off-street parking space for every 1,000 square feet of gross floor area.

Community recreation hall

One off-street parking space for every possible four seats in the auditorium(s) and assembly room(s) based on maximum capacity as determined by the International Building Code.

Clubs

One off-street parking space for each four persons of the building’s maximum seating capacity as determined by the International Building Code.

Parks

Director shall determine the standards to be applied for parking using as a guide the uses listed in this section that most closely resemble the uses proposed.

Essential public facilities

Parking required as per underlying use.

Utilities

Director shall determine the standards to be applied for parking using as a guide the uses listed in this section that most closely resemble the use proposed.

Cemetery

Off-street parking spaces are required for only office, chapel and indoor assembly areas. For office space: one off-street parking space for every 300 square feet of gross floor area. For chapel and indoor assembly areas: one off-street parking space for every four fixed seats. For a fixed seat configuration consisting of pews or benches, the seating capacity shall be computed upon 18 linear inches of pew or bench length per seat. For a flexible configuration consisting of moveable chairs, each seven square feet of the gross floor area to be occupied by such chairs shall be considered as a seat.

Lodging, level 1

One and one-quarter off-street parking spaces for each room to rent in addition to two off-street parking spaces for the single-family residence.

Lodging, level 2

One and one-quarter off-street parking spaces for each room to rent.

Lodging, level 3

One and one-quarter off-street parking spaces for each room to rent.

Personal services

One off-street parking space for every 300 square feet of gross floor area.

Business services

One off-street parking space for every 300 square feet of gross floor area.

Professional services

One off-street parking space for every 300 square feet of gross floor area except for medical and dental offices. For medical and dental offices, one off-street parking space for every 250 square feet of gross floor area.

Ancillary services

One off-street parking space for every 300 square feet of gross floor area.

Product services, level 1

One off-street parking space for every 300 square feet of gross floor area.

Product services, level 2

One off-street parking space for every 400 square feet of gross floor area, except for auto repair. For auto repair, four off-street parking spaces for each service bay.

Sales, level 1

One off-street parking space for every 300 square feet of gross floor area.

Sales, level 2

One off-street parking space for every 400 square feet of gross floor area.

Sales, level 3

One off-street parking space for every 400 square feet of gross floor area.

Ancillary sales

One off-street parking space for every 300 square feet of gross floor area.

Commercial child care

One off-street parking space for every five possible seats in the main auditorium or assembly rooms.

Commercial recreation, indoor

One off-street parking space for every possible four seats in the auditoriums and assembly rooms based on maximum capacity as determined by the International Building Code; for bowling alleys, five off-street parking spaces for each alley.

Commercial recreation, outdoor

Director shall determine the standards to be applied for parking using as a guide the uses listed in this section that most closely resemble the uses proposed.

Commercial entertainment

One off-street parking space for every possible four seats in the auditorium(s) and assembly room(s) based on maximum capacity as determined by the International Building Code.

Automotive fuel-dispensing facility

One off-street parking space for every two fuel pumps, if service bays are not provided. If service bays are provided, four off-street parking spaces for each service bay.

Vehicle wash

Two off-street parking spaces per service bay plus one space for every two employees. In addition, a stacking lane or lanes capable of accommodating a minimum of 10 percent of the projected maximum hourly throughput of vehicles for the vehicle wash shall be provided near the entrance to the wash bay(s). One car length within the stacking lane shall be equal to the length of a standard parking space.

Commercial parking lot

None required.

Animal clinic

One off-street parking space for every 250 square feet of gross floor area.

Kennel

One off-street parking space for every 300 square feet of gross floor area.

Adult entertainment facility

Parking required as per underlying use.

Restaurant 1

One off-street parking space for every three seats based on a seating plan submitted to the planning director showing a reasonable seating capacity for the dining area. If, at a later date, the business desires to add more seating than shown on the seating plan, additional off-street parking will be required at one off-street parking space for every three additional seats. Concurrency review under Chapter 19.10 GHMC may also be required if the additional seats generate any new p.m. peak-hour trips, require additional sewer capacity, or increase water consumption.

Restaurant 2

One off-street parking space for every three seats based on a seating plan submitted to the planning director showing a reasonable seating capacity for the dining area. If, at a later date, the business desires to add more seating than shown on the seating plan, additional off-street parking will be required at one off-street parking space for every three additional seats. Concurrency review under Chapter 19.10 GHMC may also be required if the additional seats generate any new p.m. peak-hour trips, require additional sewer capacity, or increase water consumption.

Restaurant 3

One off-street parking space for every three seats based on a seating plan submitted to the planning director showing a reasonable seating capacity for the dining area. If, at a later date, the business desires to add more seating than shown on the seating plan, additional off-street parking will be required at one off-street parking space for every three additional seats. Concurrency review under Chapter 19.10 GHMC may also be required if the additional seats generate any new p.m. peak-hour trips, require additional sewer capacity, or increase water consumption.

Tavern

One off-street parking space for every three seats based on a seating plan submitted to the planning director showing a reasonable seating capacity for the dining area. If, at a later date, the business desires to add more seating than shown on the seating plan, additional off-street parking will be required at one off-street parking space for every three additional seats. Concurrency review under Chapter 19.10 GHMC may also be required if the additional seats generate any new p.m. peak-hour trips, require additional sewer capacity, or increase water consumption.

Drive-through facility

One off-street space for every two employees assigned to the drive-through service area. In addition, a stacking lane or lanes capable of accommodating a minimum of 10 percent of the projected maximum hourly throughput of vehicles for the drive-through facility shall be provided near the drive-through service area. One car length within the stacking lane shall be equal to the length of a standard parking space.

Marina

For moorages/slips less than 45 feet, one off-street parking space for every two berths; for moorages/slips 45 feet or longer, one space for every berth. All moorage facilities shall provide a minimum of two parking spaces. If a commercial or residential development is to be combined with a watercraft usage requiring parking, the usage which generates the larger number of spaces shall satisfy the requirements of the other usage.2

Marine sales and service

One off-street parking space for every 300 square feet of gross floor area except for boat sales and repair. For boat sales and repair, one off-street parking space for every 400 square feet of gross floor area.

Marine boat sales, level 1

One off-street parking space for every 300 square feet of gross floor area.

Marine boat sales, level 2

One off-street parking space for every 400 square feet of gross floor area.

Ministorage

Two off-street parking spaces located near the office. Parking for loading and unloading purposes is allowed in front of individual storage units unless prohibited by the fire marshal.

Industrial, level 1

One off-street parking space for every 1,000 square feet of gross floor area.

Industrial, level 2

One off-street parking space for every 1,000 square feet of gross floor area, except for moving companies and distribution facilities. For moving companies and distribution facilities, one off-street parking space for each vehicle in use, at any time, in the conduct of business.

Marine industrial

One off-street parking space for every 1,000 square feet of gross floor area.

Wireless communication facility

None required.

Accessory uses and structures

Parking required as per underlying use.

For any other use not specifically mentioned or provided for, the director shall determine the standards to be applied for parking using as a guide the uses listed above that most closely resemble the uses proposed.

In instances when the calculation of the required off-street parking spaces for new or modified uses results in a fractional parking space, the number of parking spaces required shall be rounded up to the nearest whole number.

1 If the facility or home is used exclusively for the housing of the elderly, disabled or handicapped, the decisionmaker may allow a portion of the area required for off-street parking to be reserved as a landscaped area if the decisionmaker finds that the required off-street parking is not immediately required and is in the best interest of the neighborhood.

2 See GHMC 17.48.070 for additional requirements for parking and loading facilities in the WM district.

(Ord. 1209 § 1, 2011; Ord. 1171 § 3, 2009; Ord. 1066 § 5, 2007; Ord. 1047 § 2, 2006).

17.72.040 Off-street loading design requirements.

A. Off-street loading berths shall be provided on the same lot as the use the berths serve and shall not occupy the front yard of the lot;

B. No loading berth shall be located closer than 25 feet to a residential lot line unless screened by shrubbery or a fence or a combination thereof, any one of which must be approved by the planning director;

C. Each loading berth shall be designed with access to a street or alley in a manner that does not permit undue interference with traffic movement on the public street or alley;

D. Each required loading berth shall be at least 10 feet by 25 feet in size and 18 feet in height and shall provide 85 feet of direct access uninterrupted by any change in horizontal or vertical direction between the loading dock and the street;

E. Each loading berth surface and access area shall be improved with portland cement concrete or asphaltic concrete paving to the standards established by the city public works director;

F. Areas set aside for off-street loading berths shall not be considered as satisfying the requirements for off-street parking space and shall not be used for vehicle repairs or servicing;

G. No approach to loading docks shall exceed a seven percent slope;

H. All or part of the off-street loading requirements may be met by loading facilities within the buildings. (Ord. 573 § 2, 1990).

17.72.050 Off-street loading berth requirements.

Off-street loading berths for passengers and freight shall be provided as given below and shall be on the same lot as the activity served unless the nature of the activities allows several owners to share a common location:

A. Public Uses. One berth required for each 25,000 square feet of gross floor area;

B. Commercial Uses. One berth required for each 10,000 square feet of wholesale commercial gross floor area;

C. Professional Services Use. One berth required for each 25,000 square feet of gross floor area;

D. Industrial Uses. One berth required for each 10,000 square feet of gross floor space;

E. Residential Activities. One berth required for any residential facility occupying more than 50,000 square feet of gross floor area. (Ord. 1171 § 4, 2009; Ord. 1045 § 80, 2006; Ord. 573 § 2, 1990).

17.72.060 Joint use of required parking spaces for the downtown business (DB), waterfront commercial (WC), general business (B-2), commercial (C-1) and residential and business (RB-1) districts abutting Harborview Drive and North Harborview Drive and within the View Basin neighborhood design area.

A. One parking area may contain required spaces for several different uses. Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, the required space assigned to one use may not be credited to any other use which will require parking space simultaneously.

B. To the extent that developments wish to share required spaces for two different uses, the spaces may be assigned to both uses provided one of the uses is a daytime peak use and the other is a nighttime peak use as defined below.

1. For the purposes of this section, the following uses may be considered daytime uses: government administrative office; financial institutions; professional services; retail stores (sales level 1); industrial level 1 uses; restaurants that the planning director determines have principal operating hours during the day; and similar primarily daytime uses as determined by the planning director.

2. For the purposes of this section, the following uses may be considered nighttime uses: house of religious worship; clubs; commercial entertainment; restaurants that the planning director determines have principal operating hours during the night; taverns; and similar primarily nighttime uses as determined by the planning director.

3. Some uses are daytime and nighttime peak uses. These uses are not eligible for sharing of required parking spaces.

C. Joint use of parking as specified under this section shall be by written agreement between the developments using the parking facilities. The agreement shall be subject to the approval of the city. Said agreement shall be filed with the Pierce County auditor as a covenant running with the land and is deemed binding between the assenting parties. The parking agreement shall have a minimum term of five years and shall specifically provide that the party whose parking will be eliminated or reduced (the “affected party”) by the agreement’s termination shall notify the city at least six months prior to such termination. The affected party shall secure off-street parking sufficient to meet the code-required parking for the use. (Ord. 1231 § 2, 2012; Ord. 710 § 73, 1996).

17.72.070 Special provisions for lots with existing buildings in the downtown business district.

Repealed by Ord. 1231. (Ord. 710 § 74, 1996).

17.72.075 Special provisions for existing buildings with existing nonresidential uses in the downtown business (DB), waterfront commercial (WC), waterfront Millville (WM), general business (B-2), commercial (C-1) and residential and business (RB-1) districts abutting Harborview Drive and North Harborview Drive and within the View Basin neighborhood design area.

Notwithstanding any other provisions of this chapter, the nonresidential use of a building existing as of January 1, 2012, or a building for which the first certificate of occupancy has been issued at least three years previously, may change to another nonresidential use without the requirement to provide additional off-street parking spaces; provided, that any existing off-street parking spaces allocated to the existing building are not removed or reduced. The existing building may be expanded or reconstructed; provided, that the number of off-street parking spaces for that expansion or reconstruction are provided consistent with GHMC 17.72.030 and all other applicable requirements of the Gig Harbor Municipal Code. (Ord. 1231 § 4, 2012; Ord. 1208 § 2, 2011).

17.72.080 Joint use of required parking spaces for mixed use developments within the RB-2, B-1, B-2, C-1, DB, PCD-C, PCD-BP, PCD-NB, ED and MUD zoning districts.

A. Mixed use developments that provide common parking areas may share required spaces for several different uses when those uses include both daytime and nighttime peak uses as defined below. When calculating the total required parking for the mixed use development, the parking required for either the daytime peak uses or the nighttime peak uses, whichever is smaller, may be reduced by 50 percent.

1. For the purposes of this section, the following uses may be considered daytime uses: government administrative office; financial institutions; professional services; retail stores (sales level 1); industrial level 1 uses; restaurants that the planning director determines have principal operating hours during the day; and similar primarily daytime uses as determined by the planning director.

2. For the purposes of this section, the following uses may be considered nighttime uses: house of religious worship; clubs; commercial entertainment; restaurants that the planning director determines have principal operating hours during the night; taverns; and similar primarily nighttime uses as determined by the planning director.

3. All uses do not have to be categorized as a daytime or nighttime peak use. No reduction applies to uses that experience peak levels during both the daytime and nighttime.

B. When the use or uses change within a mixed use development and additional parking spaces are required as a result, it is unlawful and a violation of this chapter to begin or maintain such use until such time as the required off-street parking provisions of this chapter are met. (Ord. 1154 § 2, 2009).

17.72.090 Electric vehicle charging station spaces.

A. Purpose. For all parking lots or garages, except those that include restricted electric vehicle charging stations.

B. Number. No minimum number of charging station spaces is required.

C. Minimum Parking Requirements. An electric vehicle charging station space may be included in the calculation for minimum required off-street parking spaces that are required pursuant to GHMC 17.72.030.

D. Design Standards. Off-street electric vehicle charging station spaces shall meet the provisions of GHMC 17.72.020, Off-street parking design standards.

E. Location and Design Criteria. The provision of electric vehicle parking will vary based on the design and use of the primary parking lot. The following required and additional locational and design criteria are provided in recognition of the various parking lot layout options.

1. Where provided, parking for electric vehicle charging purposes is required to include the following:

a. Signage. Each charging station space shall be posted with signage indicating the space is only for electric vehicle charging purposes. Days and hours of operations shall be included if time limits or tow away provisions are to be enforced.

b. Maintenance. Charging station equipment shall be maintained in all respects, including the functioning of the charging equipment. A phone number or other contact information shall be provided on the charging station equipment for reporting when the equipment is not functioning or other problems are encountered.

c. Accessibility. Where charging station equipment is provided within an adjacent pedestrian circulation area, such as a sidewalk or accessible route to the building entrance, the charging equipment shall be located so as not to interfere with accessibility requirements of WAC 51-50-005.

d. Lighting. Where charging station equipment is installed, adequate site lighting shall exist, unless charging is for daytime purposes only.

2. Parking for electric vehicles should also consider the following:

a. Notification. Information on the charging station, identifying voltage and amperage levels and any time of use, fees, or safety information.

b. Signage. Installation of directional signs at the parking lot entrance and at appropriate decision points to effectively guide motorists to the charging station space(s).

F. Data Collection. To allow for maintenance and notification, owners of any private new electric vehicle infrastructure station that will be publicly available (see definition of “electric vehicle charging station — public” in Chapter 17.73 GHMC) shall submit information on the station’s geographic location, date of installation, equipment type and model, and owner contact information to the planning department. (Ord. 1220 § 3, 2011).