Chapter 18.127


18.127.010    Title.

18.127.020    Application.

18.127.030    Purpose.

18.127.040    Authority.

18.127.050    Environmental performance standards and general limitations.

18.127.060    Dimensional standards.

18.127.070    General building design requirements.

18.127.010 Title.

This chapter shall be entitled “W-C Woodmont Commercial Zone.” [Ord. 1618-A § 1, 2015.]

18.127.020 Application.

This chapter shall apply to all areas zoned W-C Woodmont Commercial. [Ord. 1618-A § 2, 2015.]

18.127.030 Purpose.

The W-C Commercial Zone is primarily intended to enhance, promote and maintain commercial business areas, and to ensure land use compatibility among businesses in terms of permitted uses, building height, bulk, and scale; to provide a commercial area that reflects its commercial-oriented function; to serve the general public; and to ensure that development occurs consistent with the goals, policies, and implementation strategies of the City of Des Moines Comprehensive Plan. South of South 268th Street, the zone allows for a more intense and efficient use of land at increased densities for the mutual support of public investments and private development, while acknowledging the existing businesses along the State Route 99 corridor that serve a broader, regional clientele. Uses and development are regulated to create a moderately dense built-up environment, oriented to pedestrians, and ensuring a density and intensity that is transit supportive. [Ord. 1656 § 1, 2016: Ord. 1618-A § 3, 2015.]

18.127.040 Authority.

This chapter is adopted pursuant to the provisions of chapters 35.63, 35A.63 and 36.70A RCW and other applicable laws. [Ord. 1618-A § 4, 2015.]

18.127.050 Environmental performance standards and general limitations.

(1) Every use permitted within the W-C Zone pursuant to this chapter shall conform to the following general limitations and standards:

(a) As provided by chapter 9.64 DMMC, no use, activity, or equipment shall be permitted that creates a nuisance or is offensive, objectionable, or hazardous by reason of creation of odors, noise, sound, vibrations, dust, dirt, smoke, or other pollutants, noxious, toxic, or corrosive fumes or gases, radiation, explosion or fire hazard, or by reason of the generation, disposal, or storage of hazardous or dangerous wastes or materials in a manner(s) inconsistent with Title 70 RCW as presently constituted or as may be subsequently amended;

(b) Accessory uses are permitted that are customarily appurtenant or incidental to the principally permitted uses;

(c) Landscaping and fencing are required in accordance with chapter 18.195 DMMC;

(d) All uses shall be primarily contained within an enclosed structure except the following:

(i) Outdoor seating and dining;

(ii) Signs;

(iii) Off-street parking, drive-through facilities, and loading areas;

(iv) Motor vehicle fuel pumps;

(v) Display of merchandise sold on-site;

(vi) Play/recreation areas; and

(vii) Miscellaneous storage when limited to 25 percent of the site area and when perimeter landscaping and fencing is provided;

(e) In reviewing a proposed permitted use, the Planning, Building and Public Works Director may waive or include minimal conditions as may be reasonably needed to ensure that the use is consistent with the purpose of the W-C Zone, and to minimize the likelihood of adverse impacts. [Ord. 1618-A § 5, 2015.]

18.127.060 Dimensional standards.

(1) Maximum Building Height. Buildings and structures may be built to 55 feet, except that buildings and structures south of South 268th Street may be built to 70 feet.

(2) Minimum Building Height. Except for buildings containing only a full-service restaurant, and other instances specifically authorized by the City Manager or the City Manager’s designee in writing, no building shall be less than the height specified below:

(a) No minimum building height for commercial projects, and 55 feet for residential or mixed use projects.

(b) For the purposes of this subsection, minimum building height shall not include decorative towers or appurtenances, roof slopes out of character with the building’s architecture, or other contrivances provided solely for achievement of the required minimum building height. In calculating minimum building height, the City Manager or the City Manager’s designee shall include regular architectural features enclosing functional, occupiable building areas.

(3) Building Height Limitation Adjacent to Single-Family. When an abutting property is zoned Single-Family Residential, building height shall be limited as follows:

(a) Every lot shall have a rear yard setback of not less than 20 feet when abutting single-family zoned properties, except as otherwise permitted in subsection (7) of this section.

(b) Within 40 feet of the abutting Single-Family Residential Zone, maximum building height shall be 45 feet.

(c) During the design review and environmental review, the City Manager or the City Manager’s designee may impose other conditions of approval in order to mitigate potential height, bulk, and scale impacts upon adjacent single-family residents not sufficiently mitigated by existing regulations.

(4) Front Yard. No front yard setback is required.

(5) Side Yard. Every lot shall have a side yard of not less than 20 feet when abutting single-family zoned properties, except as otherwise permitted in subsection (7) of this section.

(6) Rear Yard. Every lot shall have a rear yard of not less than 20 feet when abutting Single-family zoned properties, except as otherwise permitted in subsection (7) of this section.

(7) Adjustment of Required Yards. The required rear or side yard area shall be reduced to a minimum of five feet; provided, that:

(a) A development site or potential project area is planned or may be planned for multiple buildings together as one development or in different development phases either under common ownership or separate ownership; and

(b) Buildings on a site or potential project area are served by a private, joint-use access or street which separates the rear yard area of one development site or project area from another development site or project area; and

(c) A physical separation of not less than 30 feet is provided between buildings which shall include the space or distance located within any such shared, joint-use access or street together with the yard areas adjoining and abutting buildings and said shared streets.

(8) Underground structures are permitted in all required setback areas.

(9) Height Allowance for Enhanced Design of Distinctive Rooflines. A portion of a building may exceed the maximum building height; provided, that the following provisions are met:

(a) The purpose of the additional height for the building is to provide a roofline that is of distinctive form through the use of design elements such as pitched roofs, sloped roofs, vertical offsets or other similar roof features that achieve the goals of the design guidelines in DMMC 18.136.070.

(b) The maximum building height established in subsections (1) and (3) of this section shall only be increased by a maximum of 10 percent.

(c) Architectural features associated with the distinctive roofline shall be used to emphasize significant architectural elements of the building such as the main entrance of the building or the building’s orientation to a corner, or to provide for pitched or sloped roofs for the building.

(d) Height allowed for distinctive rooflines under this section shall not be used to determine the building height for the purposes of establishing the maximum gross floor area under DMMC 18.136.070(3).

(e) The building area or amount of building structure extending above the maximum height established in subsection (3) of this section shall be limited to 30 percent of the building roof deck area. When multiple building rooflines exist at different building levels or stories, the 30 percent requirement shall only apply to the area of the roof deck of the tallest portion of a building. [Ord. 1656 § 2, 2016: Ord. 1618-A § 6, 2015.]

18.127.070 General building design requirements.

Development within the W-C Zone shall conform to the following building design requirements:

(1) General Design Guidelines.

(a) Building design shall be compatible with the site and with adjoining buildings. Building modulation and other design techniques to add architectural interest and minimize building mass shall be used. Variety in detail, form, and siting shall be used to provide visual interest.

(b) Building components such as windows, doors, eaves, and parapets shall be in proportion to each other.

(c) Colors shall be harmonious, with intense colors used only for accent.

(d) Mechanical equipment shall be integrated into building design or screened from on-site and off-site views.

(e) Exterior lighting fixtures and standards shall be part of the architectural concept and harmonious with building design.

(2) Development within the W-C Zone shall conform to the design review requirements established in DMMC 18.235.100.

(3) Maximum Gross Floor Area.

(a) The maximum gross floor area for buildings within the Woodmont Commercial Zone shall be determined by multiplying the lot area of the site by the floor area ratio (FAR) number established in the following table:

Building Height


35 Feet or Less


35 – 60


60 – 70


(b) Gross floor area shall include the total square footage of the enclosed building as further defined in DMMC 18.01.050. [Ord. 1656 § 3, 2016: Ord. 1618-A § 7, 2015.]