Chapter 18.60
RA-3,600 RESIDENTIAL: ATTACHED TOWNHOUSE AND DUPLEX 3,600 ZONE

Sections

18.60.010    Title.

18.60.020    Application.

18.60.030    Purpose.

18.60.040    Authority.

18.60.050    Application and review process for townhouse developments.

18.60.060    Dimensional standards.

18.60.070    General site design requirements.

18.60.080    General building design requirements.

18.60.010 Title.

This chapter shall be entitled “RA-3,600 Residential: Attached Townhouse and Duplex 3,600 Zone.” [Ord. 1591 § 148, 2014.]

18.60.020 Application.

This chapter shall apply to all areas zoned RA-3,600. [Ord. 1591 § 149, 2014.]

18.60.030 Purpose.

The principal objective and purpose to be served by this zone and its application is to implement the City of Des Moines Comprehensive Plan by permitting a limited increase in population density in those areas to which this zone applies by permitting duplexes or attached townhouse dwellings on individual lots. Furthermore, it is the objective and purpose of this chapter to provide development regulations that promote a desirable family living environment by establishing a minimum lot area and yards and open spaces. A related consideration is to make it possible to more efficiently and economically design and install all physical public service facilities in terms of size and capacity to adequately and permanently meet the needs resulting from a defined intensity of land use. [Ord. 1591 § 150, 2014.]

18.60.040 Authority.

This chapter is adopted pursuant to the provisions of chapters 35.63, 35A.63 and 36.70A RCW and other applicable laws. [Ord. 1591 § 151, 2014.]

18.60.050 Application and review process for townhouse developments.

(1) A subdivision or short subdivision shall be required for all townhouse developments so that individual townhouse dwellings are located on separate lots.

(2) Townhouse developments containing nine or fewer lots shall comply with the applicable provisions of this Title and chapter 17.05 DMMC, Short Subdivisions, or chapter 17.15 DMMC, Modified Subdivisions and Short Subdivisions.

(3) Townhouse developments containing five or more lots shall comply with the applicable provisions of this Title and chapter 17.10 DMMC, Subdivisions, or chapter 17.05 DMMC, Short Subdivisions, or chapter 18.230 DMMC, Planned Unit Developments.

(4) In addition to the application materials specified by chapter 17.40 DMMC, Miscellaneous Provisions, applications for townhouse developments shall include the following:

(a) Site plan depicting site and lot boundaries, abutting streets, interior public and private streets, and off-street parking areas, sidewalks, open spaces, recreation facilities, solid waste collection areas, drainage systems, and building locations and setbacks.

(b) Landscaping plan.

(c) Typical building elevations including the exterior architectural design features and materials.

(d) Proposed topography indicated by contours at two-foot intervals. If the proposed townhouse development has slopes that exceed 15 percent, five-foot contour intervals may be used in those areas. [Ord. 1591 § 152, 2014.]

18.60.060 Dimensional standards.

(1) Lot Area.

(a) Except as provided below, the minimum required lot area shall be 7,200 square feet. Within a multiple lot subdivision the minimum lot area shall be deemed to have been met if the average lot area is not less than 7,200 square feet. In computing the average area of lots in a subdivision not more than 25 percent of the number of lots may contain an area less than 7,200 square feet and in no case shall a lot contain less than 6,400 square feet of area. For lots containing more than 7,200 square feet of area not more than 8,000 square feet of area may be credited in determining the average.

(b) The minimum required area for a townhouse development shall be 7,200 square feet. Within a townhouse development, internal lots for the purpose of individual ownership of dwellings with undivided interest in the common areas and facilities may be less than 7,200 square feet in area.

(2) Lot Area Per Dwelling Unit.

(a) For duplexes, the lot area per dwelling unit shall not be less than 3,600 square feet. Within multiple lot subdivisions where lots contain an area less than 7,200 square feet but not less than 6,400 square feet, the lot area per dwelling unit shall be one-half of the area of the lot.

(b) For townhouse developments, the overall lot area per dwelling unit shall not be less than 3,600 square feet. Within a townhouse development, internal lots for the purpose of individual ownership of dwellings with undivided interest in the common areas and facilities may be less than 3,600 square feet in area.

(c) In no case shall residential density exceed 12 dwelling units per acre. For properties where the City of Des Moines Comprehensive Plan specifies a residential density less than 12 units per acre, development upon that property shall not exceed the residential density specified by the City of Des Moines Comprehensive Plan.

(3) Lot Width.

(a) Except as provided below, every lot in an RA-3,600 Zone shall have a width of not less than 60 feet.

(b) Every townhouse development shall have a width of not less than 60 feet. Within a townhouse development, internal lots that provide for individual ownership of dwellings with undivided interest in the common areas and facilities may have a width of less than 60 feet.

(4) Front Yard.

(a) Except as provided below, every lot shall have a front yard with a depth of not less than 20 feet.

(b) Within a townhouse development, the following front yard requirements shall apply:

(i) A front yard not less than 20 feet in depth shall be provided adjacent to the perimeter lot front line of a townhouse development. The Planning, Building and Public Works Director shall determine which lot perimeter lines are lot front lines.

(ii) Every internal lot shall have a front yard with a depth of not less than 10 feet. This provision shall not apply where a 20-foot front yard is provided as specified by subsection (4)(b)(i) of this section and a combined front yard 30 feet in depth would be required.

(iii) For lots containing a dwelling and on-site parking, on-site parking shall not be located closer than 20 feet from the lot front line.

(5) Side Yard.

(a) Except as provided below, every lot shall have a side yard on each side of the lot. The side yards shall have a width of not less than five feet on one side and 10 feet on the other side.

(b) Within a townhouse development, the following side yard requirements shall apply:

(i) A side yard not less than 10 feet in depth shall be provided adjacent to the perimeter lot side lines of a townhouse development. The Planning, Building and Public Works Director shall determine which perimeter lot lines are side lot lines. There may be no perimeter lot side lines.

(ii) Except where townhouse dwellings are attached, every internal lot shall have a side yard of not less than five feet.

(iii) Every internal corner lot shall have a side yard on the street side of the lot. The side yard adjacent to the street side line shall have width of not less than 10 feet.

(6) Rear Yard.

(a) Except as provided below, every lot except through lots shall have a rear yard with a depth of not less than 20 feet.

(b) Within a townhouse development, the following rear yard requirements shall apply:

(i) A rear yard not less than 10 feet in depth shall be provided adjacent to the perimeter lot rear line of a townhouse development. The Planning, Building and Public Works Director shall determine which lot perimeter lines are rear lot lines. There may be no perimeter lot rear lines.

(ii) Every internal lot except through lots shall have a rear yard with a depth of not less than 10 feet.

(7) Placement of Buildings.

(a) The distance between a building containing one or more dwelling units or accessory living quarters and any other building shall be not less than 10 feet.

(b) On the rear third of an interior lot accessory buildings not containing accessory living quarters may be built to the lot side lines and the lot rear line; provided, not less than 10 feet of the lot rear line shall be free and clear of buildings; and provided further, if the lot rears upon an alley, a garage with a vehicular entrance from the alley shall maintain a distance of not less than 15 feet from the centerline of the alley.

(c) On the rear third of a corner lot accessory buildings not containing accessory living quarters may be built to the lot interior side line and the lot rear line; provided, if the lot rears upon an alley, a garage with a vehicular entrance from the alley shall maintain a distance not less than 15 feet from the centerline of such alley;

(d) On the rear third of a reverse corner lot accessory buildings not containing accessory living quarters may be built to the lot interior side line, but no building shall be erected closer to the lot rear line than five feet unless an alley intervenes, in which case accessory buildings may be built to the lot rear line unless the accessory building is a garage with a vehicular entrance directly from the alley, in which case such building shall maintain a distance of not less than 15 feet from the centerline of the alley.

(e) In all cases a 10-foot side yard adjacent to a street side line shall be maintained.

(8) Height. No building or structure may exceed a height of 30 feet.

(9) Lot Coverage.

(a) Except as provided below and for churches and schools which shall conform to the lot coverage limitations provided by DMMC 18.52.010A, all buildings, including accessory buildings and structures but not including any open areas used to provide parking spaces and private swimming pools on residential lots, shall not cover more than 35 percent of the area on the lot.

(b) Within a townhouse development, the maximum permitted lot coverage shall be 50 percent of the area of the lot. [Ord. 1591 § 153, 2014.]

18.60.070 General site design requirements.

(1) Dwellings Per Lot. Except for one duplex on one lot, each dwelling shall be located on a separate lot with no lot having more than one dwelling.

(2) Walkways. Paved pedestrian walkways shall be provided on-site on newly developed properties or buildings materially remodeled, enlarged, or repaired to the extent of 50 percent of the market value as specified below:

(a) Pedestrian walkways shall be provided at or around buildings of sufficient extent to provide safe pedestrian passage between principal building entrances and the public sidewalk(s);

(b) Walkways shall be differentiated from vehicular circulation or vehicular parking areas as approved by the Planning, Building and Public Works Director;

(c) Walkways shall conform with all applicable provisions of chapter 51-30 WAC, Barrier-Free Facilities, as presently constituted or as may be subsequently amended; and

(d) Lighting shall be provided where stairs, curbs, ramps, or abrupt changes in walkway direction occur.

(3) Parking.

(a) All uses shall conform to the off-street parking provisions uses set forth by chapter 18.210 DMMC, Loading Areas and Off-Street Parking.

(b) Within a townhouse development, at least one of the parking spaces required for each dwelling unit shall be provided within an enclosed garage.

(c) Within a townhouse development, required parking for a dwelling may be provided on a different lot than the unit when the right to use that parking is formalized by an easement on the approved and recorded plat.

(4) Vehicular Access.

(a) Vehicular access via paved surfaces shall be provided to all on-site parking areas.

(b) Unless waived by the Planning, Building and Public Works Director, one shared driveway shall be allowed for every two townhouse dwellings.

(5) Parks. All townhouse developments shall comply with the park land requirements specified by DMMC 17.35.180, Parks.

(6) Private, usable open space for each townhouse dwelling shall be provided on the same lot as the townhouse dwelling.

(7) Landscaping. All developments in the RA-3,600 Zone shall conform to the landscaping and screening requirements set forth by chapter 18.195 DMMC, Landscaping and Screening. [Ord. 1591 § 154, 2014.]

18.60.080 General building design requirements.

Townhouse developments shall conform to the following building design requirements:

(1) No more than four townhouse dwelling units shall be provided within any building.

(2) Residential buildings shall not exceed 125 feet in length.

(3) The common wall between attached townhouse dwellings shall be located on a lot side line. Attached townhouse dwelling units shall be separated as provided in Title 14 DMMC.

(4) The main entry and the first floor for each townhouse dwelling shall be within three vertical feet of ground level. Basements and daylight basements may be provided below the first floor.

(5) Every townhouse dwelling shall have a separate, individual entry.

(6) Entrances to residential buildings shall include two or more of the following design features: covered porch, covered entry, steps, or recessed or projecting doorway.

(7) Garage doors shall not constitute more than 40 percent of any wall area on a single townhouse dwelling.

(8) Residential building facade modulation shall include all the following:

(a) The maximum wall length without modulation shall be 25 feet.

(b) The sum of the modulation depth and width shall be no less than eight feet. Neither the modulation depth nor the modulation width shall be less than two feet.

(c) Within a residential building containing two townhouses, the front yard setback for individual townhouse dwellings shall vary so that the dwellings do not have the same front yard setback.

(d) Within a residential building containing three or more townhouses, the front yard setback for individual townhouse dwellings shall vary so that no more than two-thirds of the dwellings have the same front yard setback.

(e) Any other technique approved by the Planning, Building and Public Works Director or City Council that achieves the intent of this section.

(9) Residential buildings and buildings containing parking shall have pitched roofs with a minimum slope of 4:12 over a minimum of 65 percent of the building.

(10) Residential buildings with rooflines exceeding 60 feet in length shall provide roofline variation in accordance with all of the following:

(a) The maximum roof length without variation shall be 30 feet.

(b) The minimum horizontal or vertical offset shall be two feet.

(c) The minimum variation length shall be eight feet.

(d) Roofline variation shall be achieved using one or more of the following methods:

(i) Vertical offset in ridge line.

(ii) Horizontal offset in ridge line.

(iii) Variations in roof pitch.

(iv) Gables.

(v) Any other technique approved by the Planning, Building and Public Works Director or City Council that achieves the intent of this section.

(11) Every townhouse dwelling shall have recorded with the county auditor a perpetually binding common party wall agreement as a covenant to each deed establishing the rights and obligations of each owner relative to the common party wall and foundation, and providing for the easements for purposes of maintenance and fire protection. Such agreement shall include provisions for upkeep and maintenance of all common areas and facilities such as landscaping, storm water facilities, utilities, park land, or other facilities.

(12) No subdivision or short subdivision of a site containing previously constructed townhouse dwellings shall be allowed unless all common walls meet current building code and fire code requirements for separately owned townhouse units, and all other requirements of this chapter are satisfied. [Ord. 1591 § 155, 2014.]