Chapter 18.40
PROPERTY DEVELOPMENT AND PROTECTION STANDARDS

18.40.000    Chapter Contents

Sections:

18.40.020    Purpose.

18.40.040    Applicability.

18.40.060    General standards.

18.40.080    Protection standards.

18.40.100    Enforcement.

18.40.020 Purpose

These standards shall ensure that new and altered uses and development will produce an urban environment of stable, desirable character which is harmonious with existing development and consistent with the Comprehensive Plan.

(Ord. 5517 §1, 1995).

18.40.040 Applicability

All new construction, grading, and additions and all modifications to an existing structure in excess of twenty-five (25) percent of the structure floor area, shall be subject to the standards set forth in this Chapter. See Non-conforming, Chapter 18.37.) All continuing operations and uses shall be subject to and conform to the Protection Standards of this Chapter.

(Ord. 6562 §4, 2008; Ord. 5830 §45, 1998; Ord. 5517 §1, 1995).

18.40.060 General standards

These standards apply to more than one (1) land use district and are therefore combined in this Chapter. These standards are to be considered in addition to standards and design guidelines located in specific land use district chapters.

A.    Required Building Site.

1.    Building Site--Number of Buildings. Every main building hereafter erected shall be located on a legal lot of record as provided for in this title. There shall be no more than one (1) main building on any one (1) lot in the R-4, R 4-8, and R 6-12 use districts.

2.    Lot or Building Site--Reduction. No lot or parcel of land now existing or hereafter established shall be so reduced or diminished that yards, open space, width or total lot area be made smaller than the minimum required by this title; nor shall any existing lot or parcel of land that is now smaller than the minimum required by this title be further reduced or diminished in any manner.

B.    Clear Sight Triangle. (See Clear Sight Triangle definition.) All corner building sites located in use districts that require a front and side yard shall maintain a clear sight triangle at the intersection of the street rights-of-way for the purpose of traffic safety. Such building, other structures, and landscaping shall conform to those standards set forth in Chapter 4 of the Engineering Design and Development Standards of the City.

C.    Fences/Hedges, Walls and Site Perimeter Grading. It shall be the responsibility of property owners to ensure fences are within property lines. "Fences" as used in this section includes walls and similar above-grade unenclosed structures forming a continuous or nearly continuous line or row exceeding six feet in length. Also see definition, OMC 18.02.180.F. For this section only, any portion of a special purpose lot, tract or parcel, such as a stormwater or tree tract, which is within ten feet of any public street right-of-way shall be a "front yard," and all other yards shall be defined as if such tract were a buildable lot.

1.    Fences, when located within a required yard, shall not exceed the following height limits:

a.    Front yard = 48" (4'-0");

b.    Side yards = 72" (6'-0");

c.    Rear yards = 72" (6'-0");

d.    Clear Sight Triangle = 30" (2'-6").

For purposes of this section, a front yard shall not exceed ten feet in depth, regardless of any other provision found in this Title.

2.    Fence height is measured to the top of the fence, excluding posts. Point of ground measurement shall be the high point of the adjacent final grade.

3.    Fences, walls, and hedges are permitted within all yard areas provided that regardless of yard requirements, no closed gate, garage door, bollard or other feature shall obstruct a driveway or other motor vehicle private ingress within twenty (20) feet of a street right-of-way nor obstruct automobile views exiting driveways and alleys (see clear vision triangle). This 20-foot requirement is not applicable within the downtown exempt parking area as illustrated at Figure 38-2. Additional exceptions may be granted in accordance with OMC 18.38.220(A)(2).

4.    Front yard fences, of common areas, such as tree, open space, park, and stormwater tracts, must be a minimum of twenty-five (25) percent unobstructed, i.e., must provide for visibility through the fence.

5.    Fence pillars, posts, and similar features may project a maximum of two (2) feet above maximum fence height.

6.    Site Perimeter Grading. Within required yard areas, no single retaining wall (nor combination of walls within five horizontal feet) shall exceed a height of 30 inches as measured from the lowest adjacent grade, nor shall any modification of grades or combination of retaining walls result in grade changes exceeding 30 inches within five feet of a property line nor 60 inches within 10 feet of an existing or proposed property line.

7.    An administrative exception may be approved by the Department to exceed maximum fence height and other provisions of these standards under where all of the following conditions exist.

a.    Variation of existing grade on either side of the fence results in a fence lower than the maximum height as measured from the highest point of grade within five (5) feet of either side of the fence; or other special circumstances relating to the size, shape, topography, location, or surroundings of the subject property warrant an exception to permit a fence comparable with use rights and privileges permitted to other properties in the vicinity and in the zone in which the subject property is located;

b.    The special conditions and circumstances do not result from the actions of the applicant;

c.    Granting of the exception will not constitute a grant of special privilege inconsistent with the limitation upon uses of other properties in the vicinity and zone in which the property is located;

d.    The granting of the exception will not be materially detrimental to the public welfare or injurious to the property or improvements in the vicinity and zone in which subject property is situated; and

e.    The exception is the minimum necessary to provide the rights and privileges described above.

f.    Rear and side yard fences for legally established agricultural uses may be permitted to a maximum height of eight feet from the ground; provided, at a minimum, the portion of the fence above six feet is composed of a fence material that is of a deer fence-type design.

Examples of deer fence designs include wire with rectangular openings generally four inches by four inches in size. Additionally, the eight-foot fences shall not be constructed of chain link or chicken wire.

g.    Front yard fences surrounding a defined garden bed may be permitted to a maximum height of eight feet from the ground and shall be composed of a fence material that is of a deer fence-type design.

Examples of deer fence designs include wire with rectangular openings generally four inches by four inches in size. Additionally, the eight-foot fences shall not be constructed of chain link or chicken wire.

Applications for additional fence height or other exceptions shall include a letter or form explaining the exception sought and its purpose of; and fence illustrations and plan drawing that depicts proposed fence location and height, other structures, landscaping, and proposed grades in relation to existing grades.

[NOTE: A building permit is required for all fences exceeding six (6) feet in height. Fences and hedges may exceed maximum heights if located outside of required yards. But see Design Guidelines.]

8.    Hedges. Hedges are allowed in all required yard areas subject to the following maximum height limits:

a.    Front yard = 48" (4'0")

b.    Side yard = Unlimited

c.    Rear yard = Unlimited

[Note: Clear Sight Triangle = 30" (2'-6"), see Section 18.40.060.(C)]

9.    Barbed and/or razor wire fences. No person or persons being the owner of or agent for or in possession and control of any property within the city limits shall construct or permit to exist any fence around or in front of such premises, consisting wholly or partially of barbed and/or razor wire, except to provide security at a government-owned property or privately owned utility where security for the property is mandated by law; provided that the provisions of this section shall only extend to fences that are within ten (10) feet of a street or alley or other public place within the City.

10.    Electric fences. It is unlawful to erect or install or maintain any electric fence within the city limits except for low-voltage, solar fences installed atop a 6-foot non-electric fence for the purposes of protecting farms or agricultural animals. "Electric fence" means any fence with above-ground electric conductors carrying electric current supplied by batteries, commercial power or any other source of electricity, erected for the purpose of retaining or excluding any animals, livestock, or persons.

D.    Lighting. All display and flood lighting shall be constructed and used so as not to unduly illuminate the surrounding properties and not to create a traffic hazard.

E.    Outdoor Storage.

1.    Except as provided in the underlying district, there shall be no outdoor storage of goods or materials, and there shall be no warehousing or indoor storage of goods or materials beyond that normally incidental to the uses permitted in each underlying district. Permitted outdoor storage must be screened from view of any public way.

2.    Materials covered by buildings with roofs but without sides shall be considered outdoor storage and shall be subject to the screening provisions of this section. This provision shall not apply to display of new or used motor vehicles or watercraft where such activities are an integral part of an automobile or watercraft dealership. Refuse may be stored in cans outdoors, provided that they are enclosed in a screened enclosure area.

3.    Storage in residential areas shall comply with the same requirements as those specified for business establishments and shall, in addition, comply with the following:

a.    Motor vehicles, appliances, and any other mechanical equipment which is no longer operable or licensed shall not be stored outside for a period exceeding thirty (30) days;

b.    Operable motor vehicles, boats, trailers, recreational vehicles and the like may be stored on the premises provided that they do not obstruct the use of public right-of-way or interfere with traffic visibility, especially the visibility of and at intersections of streets. Vehicles, boats, and the like, so stored shall not be used for living quarters. The storage of boats with a beam exceeding eight (8) feet may be permitted only if it is determined by the Hearing Examiner that such storage will not be detrimental to surrounding property or the neighborhood. In no event shall such vehicles, boats and the like be stored within less than five (5) feet of any side or rear property line without written approval of the occupant of the adjoining property.

4.    Storage in or on the public right-of-way is prohibited. All vehicles, boats, trailers, recreational vehicles, household and business equipment, landscape material and any other personal items shall not be placed within a public right-of-way longer than twenty-four (24) hours. Stored item(s) shall be tagged by the police and a warning issued to remove within seventy-two (72) hours. Failure to do so will result in removal by the city at the owners expense. (Also see RCW 46.55.085.)

F.    Pleasure Boat Storage.

1.    Private pleasure boats shall be allowed to moor in any use district and such moorage, exclusive of yacht clubs, marinas and other commercial moorage facilities shall be subject to the following requirements:

2.    The height of any covered boat house shall not exceed sixteen (16) feet above the ordinary water level.

3.    The side or end of a covered boat house that faces the water shall not be more than sixty (60) feet beyond the natural shoreline.

4.    All structures shall conform to the side yard requirements of the use district in which they are located.

5.    Any side wall or roof of any moorage structure shall consist of rigid or semi-rigid materials and the roof area shall not exceed one thousand (1,000) square feet.

6.    Covered boat houses shall not occupy more than fifty (50) percent of the width of the lot at the shoreline upon which it is located.

7.    A moored boat shall not be used as a place of residence unless some means is employed to connect such boat with the city sewer system.

EXEMPT: Any boat moorage in water under government supervision is exempt from the above-mentioned requirements.

G.    Underground Utility Lines.

1.    Except as follows, all electrical, telephone or other utility distribution and service lateral lines or wires shall be underground.

Exemptions:

a.    Electric utility substations, switching stations, pad-mounted transformers and switching facilities. These above ground facilities shall be screened from view;

b.    Electric transmission systems of a voltage of fifty-five (55) kv or more (including poles and wires) and equivalent communications facilities;

c.    Street lighting (poles);

d.    Telephone pedestals and other equivalent communication facilities;

e.    Police and fire sirens, or any similar municipal equipment, including traffic control equipment;

f.    Temporary services for construction;

2.    The cost of constructing new facilities underground or relocating existing aerial facilities underground shall be borne by the serving utilities, the owners of the real property to be served or others requesting such underground service in accordance with the applicable filed tariffs, or the rules and regulations or the published policies of the respective utilities furnishing such service, or as may be contractually agreed upon between the utility and such owner or applicant.

3.    In the absence of filed tariffs, rules or regulations, published policies or contractual agreement, the cost of constructing new facilities underground or relocating existing aerial facilities underground may be financed by any method authorized by state law.

H.    Yards.

1.    In addition to the following, yard regulations found in Section 18.04.060(B) (Accessory Structures) apply to all building sites in all use districts of the city.

2.    Yards/Setbacks.

a.    The required setback area shall be parallel to the structure requiring a setback. Setback width shall be measured from the outermost edge of the building foundation to the closest point of the parallel (or nearly parallel) adjoining lot line. In the event of a planned unit development or binding site plan, such development shall meet all Uniform Building Code separation requirements. (See Figure 40-4.)

b.    A required yard area shall be kept free of any building or structure taller than thirty (30) inches, except that a building or projection shall be allowed as provided below:

i.    Cornices, window sills, bay windows, flues and chimneys, planters, and eaves of roofs may project two (2) feet into the required yard area.

ii.    Marquees and awnings of commercial buildings may project into required setback areas.

iii.    Fences may project into the required yard area if they meet fence height requirements found in Section 18.40.060(C).

iv.    Uncovered steps, porches, or patios, which are no more than thirty (30) inches above the adjacent grade may be placed within the required setback area.

v.    Uncovered swimming pools, hot tubs and satellite dish antennas may be placed in the rear or interior side yard setback area. See 18.04.060(X)(2)(f).

vi.    Signs in compliance with Chapter 18.42

vii.    Refer to each land use district for other allowed projections in required yards.

c.    No building construction nor projection is allowed within any utility, access or public/private easement.

d.    The front yard setback for a flag lot shall be a minimum of ten (10) feet measured from the nearest parallel or nearly parallel lot line adjacent to the front facade of the dwelling.

FIGURE 40-4

FIGURE 40-5

3.    Use of Yard by Another Building. No yard or other open space required by this chapter for any building shall be considered as a yard or other open space for any other building; nor shall any yard or open space on one building site be considered as a yard or open space for a building on any other building site.

I.    Minimum Street Frontage.

1.    Each lot, other than in townhouse, cottage and co-housing projects, shall have a minimum of thirty (30) feet of frontage on a public or private street. With respect to binding site plans, this requirement shall apply to the entirety of the binding site plan and not to each individual site or lot. The Director may allow the street frontage to be reduced or eliminated to the minimum extent necessary to enable access to property where public street access is not feasible for such reasons, including but not limited to, physical site conditions or preexisting development or to protect environmentally Critical Areas.

FIGURE 4-2

2.    Subdivisions, short subdivisions, binding site plans, and lot line adjustments creating flag lots (with street frontages of less than thirty (30) feet) are subject to the following conditions.

a.    The project shall be designed to minimize the creation of flag lots.

b.    Adjoining flag lots shall share a common driveway wherever possible.

c.    All driveways accessing flag lots shall be designed to allow fire truck access to within one hundred fifty (150) feet of all exterior points of the building(s) on the lot(s), unless alternate forms of fire protection approved by the Chief of the Fire Department are provided, including but not limited to, sprinkler systems.

d.    The area of a flag lot which is less than thirty (30) feet in width shall not be considered part of the minimum lot area required in Table 4.04.

(Ord. 7045 §7, 2016; Ord. 6842 §9, 2013; Ord. 6562 §4, 2008; Ord. 6419 §2, 2006; Ord. 6273 §11, §19, 2003; Ord. 5830 §19, 1998; Ord. 5714 §22, 1997; Ord. 5664 §10, 1997; Ord. 5527 §1, 1995; Ord. 5517 §1, 1995).

18.40.080 Protection standards

A.    General. It shall be the responsibility of the operator and/or the proprietor of any permitted use to provide such reasonable evidence and technical data as the enforcing officer may require to demonstrate that the use or activity is or will be in compliance with the performance standards of this Title. Failure of the enforcing officer to require such information shall not be construed as relieving the operator and/or the proprietor from compliance with the Environmental Performance Standards of this Ordinance.

B.    Noise.

1.    The maximum allowable noise levels as measured at the property line of noise impacted uses or activities shall be those set forth in the Washington Administrative Code, Chapter 173-60, titled "Maximum Environmental Noise Levels," which chapter is hereby incorporated by reference, except as otherwise provided herein.

2.    The "Environmental Designation for Noise Abatement" (EDNA) for the several land use classifications of this Ordinance shall be as follows:

All living areas (single-family, multifamily, etc.): A

Medical service and professional office/residential multi: A

All other commercial areas: B

Light industrial, industrial: C

3.    Noise levels of any sound source, when measured in the manner and locations prescribed in (WAC 173-60) shall not exceed the values shown in Table N.

TABLE N

PERMITTED SOUND LEVELS IN RECEIVING EDNA CLASSES

1. FROM EDNA CLASS A (RESIDENTIAL) SOURCE

Land Use Classification or District

EDNA Class of Receptor

Maximum Sound Level* (Db(A))

Duration of Any One-Hour Period (min)

Applicable Hours***

Single-family Multifamily

A

A

A

A

A

A

A

A

55

60

65

70

45

50

55

60

Continually

15

5**

1

Continually

15

5**

5

7 a.m.-10 p.m.

7 a.m.-10 p.m.

7 a.m.-10 p.m.

7 a.m.-10 p.m.

10 p.m.-7 a.m.

10 p.m.-7 a.m.

10 p.m.-7 a.m.

10 p.m.-7 a.m.

Commercial

Industry

B

C

No Requirement

No Requirement

 

2. FROM EDNA CLASS B (COMMERCIAL) SOURCE

Single-family Multifamily

A

A

A

A

A

A

A

A

57

62

67

72

47

52

57

62

Continually

15

5**

1

Continually

15

5**

5

7 a.m.-10 p.m.

7 a.m.-10 p.m.

7 a.m.-10 p.m.

7 a.m.-10 p.m.

10 p.m.-7 a.m.

10 p.m.-7 a.m.

10 p.m.-7 a.m.

10 p.m.-7 a.m.

Commercial

Commercial

Commercial

Industry

B

B

B

C

65****

60****

65****

Continually

Continually

Continually

No Requirement

7 a.m.-10 p.m.

10 p.m.-7 a.m.

7 a.m.-11 p.m. Fri & Sat

3. FROM EDNA CLASS C (INDUSTRIAL) SOURCE

Single-family

Multifamily

A

A

A

A

A

A

A

A

60

65

70

75

50

55

60

65

Continually

15

5**

1

Continually

15

5**

5

7 a.m.-10 p.m.

7 a.m.-10 p.m.

7 a.m.-10 p.m.

7 a.m.-10 p.m.

10 p.m.-7 a.m.

10 p.m.-7 a.m.

10 p.m.-7 a.m.

10 p.m.-7 a.m.

Commercial

Industry

B

C

65****

Continually

No Requirement

All hours

*Source: Chapter 173-60, Washington Administrative Code "Maximum Environmental Noise Levels." See Chapter 173-60 regarding variances and exemptions.

**Total not to exceed 15 minutes in any one hour.

***The lower noise levels for EDNA A (residential) receptors apply on all hours of the weekends and holidays.

****DB, UW, UW-H, UR Districts only

C.    Emissions.

1.    Air Pollution shall be controlled by the operator and/or proprietor of any land use or activity permitted by this title. The ambient air quality standards specified in Regulation I of the Olympic Air Pollution Control Agency (OAPCA), shall apply to all air contaminants listed therein. See Chapter 173-60 regarding variances and exemptions.

2.    Toxic Substances shall be kept to concentrations not exceeding one-fiftieth (1/50) of interior standards by use of the best available control methods and technology in all phases of plant operation and handling of materials, and by an active commitment to good housekeeping practices. Toxic substances not listed in Regulation I of OAPCA, but released into the air shall be limited in accordance with the most current publication entitled Threshold Limit Values, of the American Conference of Governmental Hygienists.

3.    Liquid Wastes shall be disposed of through local sanitary sewer systems only upon approval of affected sewer district authorities.

4.    Liquid or solid wastes unacceptable to public sewer authorities shall be disposed of on a regular basis in keeping with the best operating characteristics of the industry, and in compliance with the regulations and requirements of local, regional, state or federal agencies having jurisdiction in waste disposal and environmental health and safety.

5.    Any operation producing intense heat or glare shall be performed within an enclosure so as to completely obscure such operation from view from any point along the property line.

6.    The use, storage, transportation and disposal of all radioactive materials or devices shall be subject to the regulatory jurisdiction and control of the Radiation Control Agency of the Washington State Department of Social and Health Services as amended.

7.    No use shall cause earth vibrations or concussions detectable without the aid of instruments beyond its lot lines, with the exception of the temporary vibration produced as a result of construction activity. Such temporary construction activity shall be restricted to the hours between 7:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m.

D.    Ground and Soil Contamination. Materials used or produced in any manufacturing process shall be handled in such a manner as to prevent ground or soil pollution which destroys or endangers the support of natural vegetation or which may contaminate underground aquifers, or other natural drainage systems.

E.    Noise Attenuation. All residential and office buildings within three hundred (300) feet of an Industrial or Light Industrial-Commercial zone must use noise attenuation construction or buffering techniques for the benefit of the occupants of the buildings so that state noise standards are met.

(Ord. 6575 §1, 2008; Ord. 6273 §22, 2003; Ord. 5517 §1, 1995).

18.40.100 Enforcement

The enforcing officer is authorized and required to enforce the minimum standards of this chapter.

A.    Proposed Activities.

1.    In the enforcement of this chapter, the enforcing officer may require the developer of a proposed activity or use to submit reasonable evidence and technical data to demonstrate that the use or activity will be in compliance with the performance standards of this chapter.

2.    The enforcing officer may undertake independent studies and engage such technical assistance as may be needed for such studies or to evaluate data or information submitted by such proponents in connection with the performance standards of any activity.

3.    The developer shall pay for or reimburse the City for the costs incurred in the conduct of such tests as the City may require and for costs incurred by the City to engage technical consultants for review and interpretation of data and findings submitted by or on behalf of the developer.

B.    Existing Activities.

1.    The enforcing officer, upon the request of a complainant, or upon his/her own initiative, may require the operator of any existing activity or use to submit reasonable evidence and technical data to demonstrate that the use or activity is in compliance with the performance standards of this chapter.

2.    The enforcing officer may undertake independent studies and engage such technical assistance as may be needed for such studies or to evaluate data or information submitted by such operators in connection with an investigation of compliance with the performance standards of this chapter.

3.    Only in the event that a violation of these performance standards is found shall the operator of the activity pay for or reimburse the City for the costs incurred in the conduct of such tests as the City may require, and for costs incurred by the City to engage technical consultants for review and interpretation of data and findings collected in connection with an investigation of compliance with the performance standards of this chapter.

(Ord. 5517 §1, 1995).