Chapter 19.137
WIRELESS COMMUNICATION FACILITIES

Sections:

19.137.010    Description, purpose, and intent.

19.137.015    Exemptions.

19.137.020    Definitions.

19.137.030    Permitted locations and approval processes.

19.137.040    Locational hierarchy – Applicable to all WCF approvals.

19.137.050    Structural hierarchy – Applicable to all WCF approvals.

19.137.060    Criteria for WCF approvals – Administrative review.

19.137.070    Criteria for WCF approvals – Conditional use permits.

19.137.080    Design and concealment standards for small wireless facility deployments.

19.137.090    Criteria for equipment enclosures.

19.137.100    Height variance.

19.137.110    Technical and safety requirements.

19.137.120    Independent technical review of WCF applications.

19.137.130    WCF removal.

19.137.140    Appeals.

19.137.010 Description, purpose, and intent.

A. In addition to the general purposes set forth in the Comprehensive Plan, this chapter is included in the Zoning Code to:

1. Provide for clear regulations concerning wireless communication facilities that are consistent with the Telecommunications Act of 1996; and

2. Encourage locations and designs for wireless communication facilities that minimize their adverse visual impacts, especially in residential areas and the downtown community business zoning district.

B. This chapter, together with the provisions of the building code and other applicable requirements, is intended to regulate telecommunication services including wireless communication facilities. (Ord. 2742 § 3, 2019).

19.137.015 Exemptions.

The following facilities and antennas are exempt from the provisions of this chapter:

A. Antennas designed to receive video programming from direct broadcast satellites (DBS).

B. Antennas designed to receive video programming from multi-channel, multi-point distribution service (MMDS). MMDS is a wireless video service technology that is transmitted terrestrially rather than via satellite.

C. Antennas designed to receive video programming from television broadcast stations.

D. Industrial processing equipment and scientific or medical equipment using frequencies regulated by the FCC.

E. Antennas and related equipment no more than three feet in height that are being stored, shipped or displayed for sale.

F. Radar systems for military and civilian communication and navigation.

G. Licensed amateur (ham) radio stations.

H. Satellite dish antennas less than two meters in diameter, including direct to home satellite services, when use as a secondary use of the property.

I. Routine maintenance or repair of a personal wireless service facility and related equipment (excluding structural work or changes in height or dimensions of antennas, towers, or buildings); provided, that compliance with the standards of this title is maintained.

J. Subject to compliance with all other applicable standards of this title, a building permit application need not be filed for emergency repair or maintenance of a personal wireless service facility until 30 days after the completion of such emergency activity.

K. A cell on wheels or other temporary personal wireless telecommunications facility shall be permitted at a time and manner as determined by the city.

L. Automated meter reading (AMR) facilities for collecting utility meter data for use in the sale of utility services, except for WIP and other antennas greater than two feet in length; so long as the AMR facilities are within the scope of activities permitted under a valid franchise agreement between the utility service provider and the City.

M. Strand-mounted and other stand-alone Wi-Fi antennas less than two and one-half cubic feet in total volume when installed pursuant to a valid franchise and certified as compliant with FCC regulations governing RF mediation.

N. Eligible facilities requests. See Chapter 12.20 MTMC.

O. Minor modifications, maintenance, repair, or replacement of elements of an existing WCF, whether emergency or routine, so long as there is little or no change in the visual appearance.

P. Facility swaps between different communications providers; provided, that the affected facilities are permitted, and the swap does not require modifications that are more than minor in character. (Ord. 2742 § 3, 2019).

19.137.020 Definitions.

See MTMC 12.20.020 for related definitions.

A. “Antenna” means any exterior apparatus designed for telephonic, radio, data, Internet or other communications through the sending and/or receiving of radio frequency signals including, but not limited to, equipment attached to a tower, pole, light standard, building or other structure for the purpose of providing wireless services.

B. “Antenna height” means the vertical distance measured from average building elevation to the highest point of the antenna or, if on a rooftop or other structure, from the top of the roof or structure to the highest point of the antenna.

C. “Base station” means a structure or equipment at a fixed location that enables FCC-licensed or authorized communications between user equipment and a communications network. The term does not encompass a tower as defined herein or any equipment associated with a tower. “Base station” includes, without limitation:

1. Equipment associated with wireless communications services such as private, broadcast, and public safety services as well as unlicensed wireless services and fixed wireless services such as microwave backhaul.

2. Radio transceivers, antennas, coaxial or fiber-optic cable, regular and backup power supplies, and comparable equipment, regardless of technological configuration (including distributed antenna systems (“DAS”) and small wireless networks).

3. Any structure other than a tower that, at the time the relevant application is filed with the City under this section, supports or houses equipment described in subsections (C)(1) and (2) of this section that has been reviewed and approved under the applicable zoning or siting process or under another state or local regulatory review process, even if the structure was not built for the sole or primary purpose of providing that support.

The term does not include any structure that, at the time the relevant application is filed with the City under this section, does not support or house equipment described in subsections (C)(1) and (2) of this section.

D. “Antenna support structure” means a freestanding structure or device specifically designed, constructed and/or erected to support a WCF antenna and may include, but is not limited to, a monopole, lattice tower, or guy-wire support tower. “Antenna support structure” does not include attachment support structures, nor a preexisting utility pole not built for the sole or primary purpose of supporting any FCC licensed or authorized antenna.

E. “Attached WCF” means WCF antenna(s) that are attached to an existing building or structure together with the associated attachment support structure. The existing building or structure may include, but is not limited to, buildings, water towers, legal conforming commercial signs, and utility support structures.

F. “Attachment support structure” means any structure that is used to attach an “attached WCF” to an existing building or structure, except as otherwise precluded by this chapter.

G. “Collocation” means the location of WCF antenna(s) on a preexisting structure or modifying a structure for the purpose of mounting or installing an antenna facility on that structure. When used in the context of an eligible facilities request, “collocation” means the mounting or installation of transmission equipment on an eligible support structure for the purpose of transmitting and/or receiving radio frequency signals for communication purposes.

H. “Concealment elements” means transmission facilities designed to look like some feature other than a wireless tower or base station or which minimizes the visual impact of an antenna by use of nonreflective materials, appropriate colors and/or a concealment canister.

I. “Eligible facilities request” means any request for modification of an existing tower or base station that does not substantially change the physical dimensions of such tower or base station, involving:

1. Collocation of new transmission equipment;

2. Removal of transmission equipment; or

3. Replacement of transmission equipment.

J. “Eligible support structure” means any tower or base station as defined in this section; provided, that it is existing at the time the relevant application is filed with the City.

K. “Equipment structure” means a facility, shelter, cabinet or vault used to house and protect electronic or other associated equipment necessary for processing wireless communications signals. “Associated equipment” may include, for example, air conditioning, backup power supplies and emergency generators.

L. Existing. A constructed tower or base station is “existing” if it has been reviewed and approved under the applicable zoning or siting process, or under another state or local regulatory review process; provided, that a tower that has not been reviewed and approved because it was not in a zoned area when it was built, but was lawfully constructed, is existing for the purposes of this definition.

M. “Freestanding WCF” means an antenna support structure together with the antenna(s) attached to that structure.

N. “Personal wireless service” is defined in accord with RCW 35.99.010(4).

O. “Service provider” is defined in accord with RCW 35.99.010(6). “Service provider” shall include those infrastructure companies that provide telecommunications services or equipment to enable the deployment of personal wireless services.

P. “Small wireless facilities” are defined in accord with 47 CFR 1.6002(l).

Q. “Structure,” when used in the context of this chapter or Chapter 12.20 MTMC, means a pole, tower, base station, or other building, whether or not it has an existing antenna facility, that is used or to be used for the provision of personal wireless service (whether on its own or commingled with other types of services).

R. Substantial Change. A modification “substantially changes” the physical dimensions of an eligible support structure if it meets any of the following criteria:

1. For towers other than towers in the public rights-of-way, it increases the height of the tower by more than 10 percent or by the height of one additional antenna array with separation from the nearest existing antenna not to exceed 20 feet, whichever is greater; for other eligible support structures, it increases the height of the structure by more than 10 percent or more than 10 feet, whichever is greater;

2. For towers other than towers in the public rights-of-way, it involves adding an appurtenance to the body of the tower that would protrude from the edge of the tower more than 20 feet, or more than the width of the tower structure at the level of the appurtenance, whichever is greater; for other eligible support structures, it involves adding an appurtenance to the body of the structure that would protrude from the edge of the structure by more than six feet;

3. For any eligible support structure, it involves installation of more than the standard number of new equipment cabinets for the technology involved, but not to exceed four cabinets; or, for towers in the public rights-of-way and base stations, it involves installation of any new equipment cabinets on the ground if there are no preexisting ground cabinets that are more than 10 percent larger in height or overall volume than any other ground cabinets associated with the structure;

4. It entails any excavation or deployment outside the current site;

5. It would defeat the concealment elements of the eligible support structure; or

6. It does not comply with conditions associated with the siting approval of the construction or modification of the eligible support structure or base station equipment; provided, however, that this limitation does not apply to any modification that is noncompliant only in a manner that would not exceed the thresholds identified above.

S. “Telecommunications service” is defined in accord with RCW 35.99.010(7) and MTMC 12.20.020.

T. “Tower” means any structure built for the sole or primary purpose of supporting any FCC-licensed or authorized antennas and their associated facilities, including structures that are constructed for wireless communications services including, but not limited to, private, broadcast, and public safety services, as well as unlicensed wireless services and fixed wireless services such as microwave backhaul and the associated site.

U. “Transmission equipment” means equipment that facilitates transmission for any FCC-licensed or authorized wireless communication service, including, but not limited to, radio transceivers, antennas, coaxial or fiber-optic cable, and regular and backup power supply. The term includes equipment associated with wireless communications services included, but not limited to, private, broadcast, and public safety services, as well as unlicensed wireless services and fixed wireless services such as microwave backhaul.

V. “Unified enclosure” means a small wireless facility providing concealment of antennas and equipment within a single enclosure.

W. “Utility pole” means a structure designed and used primarily for the support of electrical wires, telephone wires, television cable, traffic signals, or lighting for streets, parking areas, or pedestrian paths.

X. “Utility support structure” means utility poles or towers supporting electrical, telephone, cable or other similar facilities, but does not include street light standards, pedestrian light standards, traffic light structures, traffic sign structures, or water towers.

Y. “WCF” means wireless communication facilities.

Z. “Whip antennas” means omni-directional antennas designed to receive and/or transmit signals in a 360-degree pattern and, for the purposes of this section, does not include antennas more than five inches in diameter.

AA. “Wireless communication facilities” (“WCF”) means an unstaffed facility for the transmission and/or reception of radio-frequency (RF), microwave or other signals for commercial communications purposes, typically consisting of one or more antennas, an antenna support structure or attachment support structure, and an equipment enclosure. (Ord. 2742 § 3, 2019).

19.137.030 Permitted locations and approval processes.

A. WCFs outside of the public right-of-way shall be located only in the zoning districts described in this chapter. For eligible facilities requests, see Article VII of Chapter 12.20 MTMC. See Article VI of Chapter 12.20 MTMC for provisions relating to approvals of small wireless facilities in the public right-of-way. Small wireless facilities are outright permitted uses in every zone of the City.

B. In areas of the general commercial district that are within 150 feet of the I-5 corridor and in the public facilities and services zoning district, attached WCFs and freestanding WCFs may be approved by the Director based on administrative review. In any zoning district, collocation of an additional WCF upon an existing freestanding WCF may be approved by the Director based on administrative review. No open public record hearing is required. For an eligible facilities request, see Article VII of Chapter 12.20 MTMC. The criteria to be used to determine if the WCF shall be approved are set out in MTMC 19.137.040, 19.137.050, 19.137.060 and 19.137.090.

C. In the general commercial zoning district (not within 150 feet of the I-5 corridor), and in the light industrial/office park and freeway/tourist zoning districts:

1. Attached WCFs may be approved by the Director based on administrative review. No open public record hearing is required. The criteria to be used to determine if the WCF shall be approved are set out in MTMC 19.137.040, 19.137.050, 19.137.060 and 19.137.080.

2. Freestanding WCFs require a conditional use permit issued by the Hearing Examiner pursuant to MTMC 19.110.200. In addition to applying the criteria in MTMC 19.110.200(D), the Hearing Examiner shall apply the criteria set out in MTMC 19.137.040, 19.137.050, 19.137.070, and 19.137.080.

D. In the community business, recreation and park, and special development commercial/residential zoning districts, attached and freestanding WCFs require a conditional use permit issued by the Hearing Examiner pursuant to MTMC 19.110.200. In addition to applying the criteria set out in MTMC 19.110.200(D), the Hearing Examiner shall apply the criteria set out in MTMC 19.137.040, 19.137.050, 19.137.070, and 19.137.080.

E. In the downtown community business (town center), multi-household residential low density, multi-household residential medium density, special development residential, and mobile home park zoning districts:

1. Freestanding WCFs other than small wireless facilities in the public right-of-way are not permitted.

2. Attached WCFs in the form of small wireless facilities require a conditional use permit issued by the Hearing Examiner pursuant to MTMC 19.110.200. In addition to applying the criteria set out in MTMC 19.110.200(D), the Hearing Examiner shall apply the criteria set out in MTMC 19.137.040, 19.137.050, 19.137.070, and 19.137.080.

F. In the single-household residential zoning district:

1. Freestanding WCFs outside the public right-of-way are not permitted.

2. Small wireless facilities are permitted pursuant to Article VI of Chapter 12.20 MTMC.

G. For administrative determinations and Hearing Examiner decisions on WCFs, written findings and conclusions will be prepared to support the decision and retained in City files. (Ord. 2742 § 3, 2019).

19.137.040 Locational hierarchy – Applicable to all WCF approvals.

A. WCF approvals for facilities other than small wireless facility deployments in the public right-of-way, whether subject to administrative review or requiring a conditional use permit, shall reflect the following siting priorities (in descending order):

1. Public facilities and services zoning district, and areas of the general commercial zoning district that is within 150 feet of the I-5 corridor and, in any zoning district, the collocation of an additional WCF upon an existing freestanding WCF.

2. General commercial zoning district (not within 150 feet of the I-5 corridor), and light industry/office park and freeway/tourist zoning districts.

3. Community business district, special development commercial/residential, and recreation and park zoning districts.

4. Community business downtown, multi-household residential, special development residential, and mobile home park zoning districts.

5. Single-household residential zoning district.

B. Notwithstanding anything in subsection A of this section, if the applicant demonstrates through engineering data certified by a Washington-licensed engineer that strict adherence to the locational hierarchy would result in a material impairment constituting an effective prohibition of wireless service then the location next lowest on the hierarchy shall be preferred. (Ord. 2742 § 3, 2019).

19.137.050 Structural hierarchy – Applicable to all WCF approvals.

A. WCF approvals for facilities other than small wireless facility deployments, whether subject to administrative review or requiring a conditional use permit, shall reflect the following structural priorities for placement of the WCF (in descending order). In order to obtain approval of a lower ranking alternative, the applicant must demonstrate that higher ranked alternatives are not feasible.

1. WCFs attached to existing buildings.

2. WCFs attached to existing structures other than buildings, where the existing structure already supports another WCF (i.e., collocation).

3. WCFs attached to existing structures other than buildings, where the existing structure does not already support another WCF (i.e., no collocation).

4. Freestanding WCFs.

B. Notwithstanding anything in subsection A of this section, if the applicant demonstrates through engineering data certified by a Washington-licensed engineer that strict adherence to the structural hierarchy would result in a material impairment of service constituting an effective prohibition of the provision of wireless service then the structure next lowest on the hierarchy shall be preferred. (Ord. 2742 § 3, 2019).

19.137.060 Criteria for WCF approvals – Administrative review.

A. The following criteria shall be applied in approving, approving with conditions, or denying a WCF that is subject to administrative review pursuant to MTMC 19.137.030(B) or (C)(1); provided, however, that the provisions of Article VII of Chapter 12.20 MTMC shall govern in the event of conflict:

1. Height.

a. The height of attached WCFs shall not exceed the greater of:

i. The maximum building height allowed for the underlying zoning district; or

ii. The height of the structure to which it is attached or which it replaces; provided, that in no event shall the WCF add more than 15 feet of height to the existing structure, except as provided in subsection (A)(4)(a) of this section.

b. Notwithstanding other provisions of this section, the height of freestanding WCFs shall not exceed:

i. Two hundred feet in the public facilities and services zone; or

ii. One hundred fifty feet in areas of the general commercial zoning district that are within 150 feet of the I-5 corridor.

2. Setbacks.

a. Freestanding WCFs located on a lot must conform at least to the setback requirement for structures in the underlying zoning district, except that the minimum side setback for a WCF support structure is 20 feet.

b. Freestanding WCFs located on a lot adjacent to a single-family zoning district or to the downtown community business zoning district shall comply with subsection (A)(2)(a) of this section or shall be set back a minimum of one-half the height of the antenna support structure from the nearest single-family or downtown community business lot line, whichever is the greater.

3. Antenna Design. The WCF antenna(s) shall be either:

a. A whip antenna attached to a building; or

b. Flush-mounted to a utility support structure (see Article VI of Chapter 12.20 MTMC for flush-mounting standards); or

c. Contained within a canister that is a continuation of a utility support structure or antenna support structure, or, in the case of an antenna that has exposed elements, the antenna and all of its exposed elements; or

d. Flush-mounted within 12 inches of the face of the building, mechanical equipment screening, or antenna support structure. The antenna(s) shall be painted to match the material to which they are attached; except that whip antenna arrays shall be painted a light color.

4. Small Wireless Development Standards. See MTMC 19.137.080.

5. Equipment Enclosures. WCF equipment enclosures shall comply with the criteria set out in MTMC 19.137.080.

6. Site Development Plan. A site development plan shall be submitted showing at a minimum the location, size, screening and design of all WCF structures and enclosures, including fences, and the location, number, and species of all proposed landscaping.

7. RF Emission Standards. The applicant shall provide the certification of an RF engineer with knowledge of the proposed development that the WCF will comply with the radio frequency emission standards adopted by the Federal Communications Commission. The City recognizes that the Federal Telecommunications Act of 1996 gives the Federal Communications Commission sole jurisdiction in the field of regulation of radio-frequency emissions and WCFs that meet FCC standards shall not be conditioned or denied on the basis of RF impacts. (Ord. 2742 § 3, 2019).

19.137.070 Criteria for WCF approvals – Conditional use permits.

A. In addition to the criteria set out in MTMC 19.110.200(D), the following criteria shall be applied in approving, approving with conditions, or denying WCFs that require conditional use permits pursuant to MTMC 19.137.030. See Article VI of Chapter 12.20 MTMC for small wireless deployment in the public right-of-way, except for eligible facilities requests which shall be considered under Article VI of Chapter 12.20 MTMC:

1. Visual Impact.

a. WCFs, including equipment enclosures, shall be sited and designed to minimize adverse visual impacts on surrounding properties and the traveling public to the greatest extent possible, consistent with the proper functioning of the WCF. WCFs and equipment enclosures shall be integrated through location and design to blend in with the existing characteristics of the site. Existing on-site vegetation shall be preserved or improved, and disturbance of the existing topography shall be minimized, unless such disturbance would result in less visual impact of the site to the surrounding area.

b. A site development plan shall be submitted showing at a minimum the location, size, screening and design of all WCF structures and enclosures, including fences, and the location, number, and species of all proposed landscaping.

c. WCFs in the downtown community business zoning district shall be consistent with the Town Center Design Standards.

d. WCFs in each commercial or multifamily zoning district shall be consistent with the district’s design standards.

2. Height.

a. The height of an attached WCF shall not exceed the greater of (i) the maximum building height allowed for the underlying zoning district, or (ii) the height of the structure to which it is attached or which it replaces; provided, that in no event shall the WCF add more than 15 feet of height to the existing structure, except as otherwise provided in subsection (A)(4)(a) of this section.

b. The height of freestanding WCFs requiring conditional use permits shall not exceed:

i. Sixty feet in the community business, special development commercial/residential, and recreation and park zoning districts; and

ii. One hundred feet in the general commercial, light industry/office park, and freeway/tourist zoning districts.

3. Setbacks.

a. Freestanding WCFs must conform to the setback requirement for structures in the underlying zoning district, except that the minimum side setback for a WCF support structure is 20 feet.

b. Freestanding WCFs located on a lot adjacent to a single-family zoning district or the downtown community business zoning district shall comply with subsection (A)(3)(a) of this section or shall be set back a minimum of one-half the height of the antenna support structure from the nearest single-family or downtown community business lot line, whichever is the greater.

c. The Hearing Examiner may impose greater setbacks than required under subsection (A)(3)(a) or (A)(3)(b) of this section in order to satisfy the visual impact criteria of subsection (A)(1) of this section.

4. Equipment Enclosures. Equipment enclosures shall comply with the criteria set out in MTMC 19.137.080 in addition to the visual impact criteria set out in subsection (A)(1) of this section.

5. Provision for Future Collocation. Applicants shall provide information regarding the opportunity for the collocation of other antenna(s) and related equipment. Where technically feasible, and where opportunities for smaller WCFs with fewer impacts are limited due to topography, lack of existing aboveground structures or other circumstances, provision for future collocation may be required.

6. RF Emission Standards. The applicant shall provide a certification by an RF engineer familiar with the proposed development that the WCF will comply with the radio frequency emission standards adopted by the Federal Communications Commission. The City recognizes that the Federal Telecommunications Act of 1996 gives the Federal Communications Commission sole jurisdiction in the field of regulation of radio-frequency emissions and WCFs that meet FCC standards shall not be conditioned or denied on the basis of RF impacts.

7. Antenna Design. Any WCF antenna(s) other than small wireless facilities shall be either:

a. A whip antenna attached to a building; or

b. Flush-mounted to the utility structure (see Article VI of Chapter 12.20 MTMC for flush-mounting standards); or

c. Contained within a canister that is a continuation of a utility support structure or antenna support structure; or

d. Flush-mounted within 12 inches of the face of the building, mechanical equipment screening, or antenna support structure. The antenna(s) shall be painted to match the material to which they are attached, except that whip antenna arrays shall be painted a light color. (Ord. 2742 § 3, 2019).

19.137.080 Design and concealment standards for small wireless facility deployments.

Small wireless facility deployments whether permitted in the right-of-way under Article IV of Chapter 12.20 MTMC or permitted in accordance with this chapter shall conform to the following design standards:

A. Small Wireless Facilities Attached to Nonwooden Poles. Small wireless facilities attached to existing or replacement nonwooden light poles and other nonwooden poles in the right-of-way or poles outside of the right-of-way shall conform to the following design criteria:

1. Antennas and the associated equipment enclosures shall be sited and installed in a manner which minimizes the visual impact on the streetscape either by fully concealing the antennas and associated equipment fully within the pole unless such concealment is technically impossible or through a concealment element plan which provides an equivalent or greater impact reduction. This requirement shall be applied in a manner which does not dictate the technology employed by the service provider nor unreasonably impair the technological performance of the equipment chosen by the service provider.

2. All conduit, cables, wires and fiber must be routed internally in the light pole. Full concealment of all conduit, cables, wires and fiber is required within mounting brackets, shrouds, canisters or sleeves if attaching to exterior antennas or equipment.

3. An antenna on top of an existing pole may not extend more than six feet above the height of the existing pole and the diameter may not exceed 16 inches, measured at the top of the pole, unless the applicant can demonstrate that more space is needed. The antennas shall be integrated into the pole design so that it appears as a continuation of the original pole, including colored or painted to match the pole, and shall be shrouded or screened to blend with the pole except for canister antennas which shall not require screening. All cabling and mounting hardware/brackets from the bottom of the antenna to the top of the pole shall be fully concealed and integrated with the pole.

4. Any replacement pole shall substantially conform to the design of the pole it is replacing or the neighboring pole design standards utilized within the contiguous right-of-way.

5. The height of any replacement pole may not extend more than 10 feet above the height of the existing pole or the minimum additional height necessary for adequate clearance from electrical wires, whichever is greater.

6. The diameter of a replacement pole shall comply with the City’s street setback and sidewalk clearance requirements, ADA requirements, and if a replacement light standard then with the City’s lighting requirements.

7. The use of the pole for the siting of a small wireless facility shall be considered secondary to the primary function of the pole. If the primary function of a pole serving as the host site for a small cell facility becomes unnecessary, the pole shall not be retained for the sole purpose of accommodating the small cell facility and all associated equipment shall be removed.

B. Wooden Pole Design Standards. Small wireless facilities located on wooden poles shall conform to the following design criteria:

1. The wooden pole at the proposed location may be replaced with a taller pole for the purpose of accommodating a small wireless facility; provided, that the replacement pole shall not exceed a height that is a maximum of 10 feet taller than the existing pole, unless a further height increase is required and confirmed in writing by the pole owner and that such height extension is the minimum extension possible to provide sufficient separation and/or clearance from electrical and wireline facilities.

2. A pole extender may be used instead of replacing an existing pole but may not increase the height of the existing pole by more than 10 feet, unless a further height increase is required and confirmed in writing by the pole owner and that such height increase is the minimum extension possible to provide sufficient separation and/or clearance from electrical and wireline facilities. A “pole extender” as used herein is an object affixed between the pole and the antenna for the purpose of increasing the height of the antenna above the pole. The pole extender shall be painted to approximately match the color of the pole and shall substantially match the diameter of the pole measured at the top of the pole.

3. Replacement wooden poles may either match the approximate color and materials of the replaced pole or shall be the standard new wooden pole used by the pole owner in the City.

4. Antennas, equipment enclosures, and all ancillary equipment, boxes and conduit shall be colored or painted to match the approximate color of the surface of the wooden pole on which they are attached.

5. Panel antennas shall not be mounted more than 12 inches from the surface of the wooden pole.

6. Antennas should be placed in an effort to minimize visual clutter and obtrusiveness. Multiple antennas are permitted on a wooden pole provided that each antenna enclosure shall not be more than three cubic feet in volume.

7. A canister antenna may be mounted on top of a wooden pole, which may not exceed the height requirements described in subsection (B)(1) of this section. A canister antenna mounted on the top of a wooden pole shall not exceed 16 inches, measured at the top of the pole, and shall be colored or painted to match the pole. The canister antenna must be placed to look as if it is an extension of the pole. In the alternative, the applicant may propose a side mounted canister antenna, so long as the inside edge of the antenna is no more than 12 inches from the surface of the wooden pole. All cables shall be concealed either within the canister antenna or within a sleeve between the antenna and the wooden pole.

8. An omni-directional antenna may be mounted on the top of an existing wooden pole, provided such antenna is no more than four feet in height and is mounted directly on the top of a pole or attached to a sleeve made to look like the exterior of the pole as close to the top of the pole as technically feasible. All cables shall be concealed within the sleeve between the bottom of the antenna and the mounting bracket.

9. All related equipment, including but not limited to ancillary equipment, radios, cables, associated shrouding, microwaves, and conduit which are mounted on wooden poles shall not be mounted more than six inches from the surface of the pole, unless a further distance is technically required, and is confirmed in writing by the pole owner.

10. Equipment for small wireless facilities must be attached to the wooden pole, unless otherwise permitted to be ground-mounted pursuant to subsection (E)(1) of this section. The equipment must be placed in the smallest enclosure possible for the intended purpose. The equipment enclosure and all other wireless equipment associated with the utility pole, including wireless equipment associated with the antenna and any preexisting associated equipment on the pole, may not exceed 28 cubic feet. Multiple equipment enclosures may be acceptable if designed to more closely integrate with the pole design and does not cumulatively exceed 28 cubic feet. The applicant is encouraged to place the equipment enclosure behind any banners or road signs that may be on the pole; provided, that such location does not interfere with the operation of the banners or signs.

11. An applicant who desires to enclose its antennas and equipment within a unified enclosure may do so; provided, that such unified enclosure does not exceed the minimum size necessary for its intended purpose and the verified enclosure and all other wireless equipment associated with the pole, including wireless equipment associated with the antenna and any preexisting associated equipment does not exceed 28 cubic feet in volume. To the extent possible the unified enclosure shall be placed so as to appear as an integrated part of the pole or behind banners or signs. The unified enclosure may not be placed more than six inches from the surface of the pole unless a further distance is technically required and confirmed in writing by the pole owner.

12. The visual effect of the small wireless facility on all other aspects of the appearance of the wooden pole shall be minimized to the greatest extent possible.

13. The use of the wooden pole for the siting of a small wireless facility shall be considered secondary to the primary function of the pole. If the primary function of a pole serving as the host site for a small wireless facility becomes unnecessary, the pole shall not be retained for the sole purpose of accommodating the small wireless facility and the small wireless facility and all associated equipment shall be removed.

14. The outside conduit shall be colored or painted to match the pole. The number of conduits shall be minimized to the number technically necessary to accommodate the small wireless facility.

15. All cables and wires shall be routed through conduit along the outside of the pole. The conduit shall be colored or painted to match the pole. The number of conduits shall be the minimum number technically necessary to accommodate the small wireless facility.

C. Small wireless facilities attached to existing buildings shall conform to the following design criteria:

1. Small wireless facilities may be mounted to the sides of a building if the antennas do not interrupt the building’s architectural theme.

2. The interruption of architectural lines or horizontal or vertical reveals is discouraged.

3. New architectural features such as columns, pilasters, corbels, or other ornamentation that conceal antennas may be used if it complements the architecture of the existing building.

4. Small wireless facilities shall utilize the smallest mounting brackets necessary in order to provide the smallest offset from the building.

5. Skirts or shrouds shall be utilized on the sides and bottoms of antennas in order to conceal mounting hardware, create a cleaner appearance, and minimize the visual impact of the antennas. Exposed cabling/wiring is prohibited.

6. Small wireless facilities shall be painted and textured to match the adjacent building surfaces.

D. Small wireless facilities mounted on cables strung between existing utility poles shall conform to the following standards:

1. Each strand-mounted facility shall be no more than three cubic feet in volume;

2. Only one strand-mounted facility is permitted per cable between any two existing poles;

3. The strand-mounted devices shall be placed as close as possible to the nearest utility pole, in no event more than five feet from the pole unless a greater distance is required by the pole owner for safety clearance;

4. No strand-mounted device shall be located in or above the portion of the roadway open to vehicular traffic;

5. Grantee may not place an ancillary pole or ground mounted equipment to accommodate such strand mounted facilities, unless in the case of ground-mounted equipment placed in preexisting equipment cabinets; and

6. Such strand-mounted devices must be installed to cause the least visual impact and without excess exterior cabling or wires (other than the original stand).

E. General Requirements.

1. Ground-mounted equipment in the rights-of-way is prohibited, unless such facilities are placed underground, or the applicant can demonstrate that pole-mounted or undergrounded equipment is technically infeasible. If ground-mounted equipment is necessary, then the applicant shall submit a concealment element plan. Generators located in the rights-of-way are prohibited.

2. No equipment shall be operated so as to produce noise in violation of Chapter 8.20 MTMC.

3. Small wireless facilities are not permitted on traffic signal poles.

4. Replacement poles and new poles shall comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), City construction and sidewalk clearance standards, and state and federal regulations in order to provide a clear and safe passage within the rights-of-way.

5. Replacement poles shall be located as near as possible to the existing pole with the requirement to remove the abandoned pole.

6. The design criteria as applicable to small wireless facilities described herein shall be considered concealment elements and such small wireless facilities may only be expanded upon an eligible facilities request described in Article VII of Chapter 12.20 MTMC when the modification does not defeat the concealment elements of the facility.

7. No signage, message or identification other than the manufacturer’s identification or identification required by governing law is allowed to be portrayed on any antenna, and any such signage on equipment enclosures shall be of the minimum amount possible to achieve the intended purpose; provided, that signs are permitted as concealment element techniques where appropriate.

8. Antennas and related equipment shall not be illuminated except for security reasons, required by a federal or state authority, or unless approved as part of a concealment element plan.

9. Side arm mounts for antennas or equipment must be the minimum necessary and shall be no more than 12 inches from the pole surface to the surface of the antenna or equipment.

10. The preferred location of a small wireless facility on a pole is the location with the least visible impact.

11. Antennas, equipment enclosures, and ancillary equipment, conduit and cable, shall not dominate the building or pole upon which they are attached.

12. The City may consider the cumulative visual effects of small wireless facilities mounted on poles within the rights-of-way in when assessing proposed siting locations so as to not adversely affect the visual character of the City. This provision shall not be applied to limit the number of permits issued when no alternative sites are reasonably available nor to impose a technological requirement on the service provider.

13. These design standards are intended to be used solely for the purpose of concealment and siting. Nothing herein shall be interpreted or applied in a manner which dictates the use of a particular technology. When strict application of these requirements would unreasonably impair the function of the technology chosen by the applicant, alternative forms of concealment or deployment may be permitted which provide similar or greater protections from negative visual impacts to the streetscape.

F. New Poles in the Rights-of-Way for Small Wireless Facilities and Installations in a Design Zone.

1. New poles within the rights-of-way are only permitted if the applicant can establish that:

a. The proposed small wireless facility cannot be located on an existing utility pole or light pole, electrical transmission tower or on a site outside of the public rights of way such as a public park, public property, building, transmission tower or in or on a nonresidential use in a residential zone whether by roof or panel-mount or separate structure;

b. The proposed wireless communications facility receives approval for a concealment element design, as described in subsection (F)(3) of this section;

c. The proposed wireless communications facility also complies with shoreline and SEPA, if applicable; and

d. No new poles shall be located in a critical area or associated buffer required by the City’s critical areas management ordinance (Chapter 16.15 MTMC), except when determined to be exempt pursuant to said ordinance.

2. The concealment element design shall include the design of the screening, fencing or other concealment technology for a tower, pole, or equipment structure, and all related transmission equipment or facilities associated with the proposed wireless communications facility, including but not limited to fiber and power connections.

a. The concealment element design should seek to minimize the visual obtrusiveness of wireless communications facility installations. The proposed pole or structure should have similar designs to existing neighboring poles in the rights-of-way, including to the extent technically feasible similar height. Other concealment methods include, but are not limited to, integrating the installation with architectural features or building design components, utilization of coverings or concealment devices of similar material, color and texture – or the appearance thereof – as the surface against which the installation will be seen or on which it will be installed, landscape design, or other camouflage strategies appropriate for the type of installation. Applicants are required to utilize designs in which all conduit and wirelines are installed internally in the structure or otherwise integrated into the design of the structure. Use of a unified enclosure equal to or less than four cubic feet in volume may be permitted in meeting these criteria.

b. If the Director has already approved a concealment element design either for the applicant or another wireless communications facility along the same public right-of-way or for the same pole type, then the applicant shall utilize a substantially similar concealment element design, unless it can show that such concealment element design is not physically or technologically feasible, or that such deployment would undermine the generally applicable design standards.

3. Even if an alternative location is established pursuant to subsections (E)(1)(a) and (2) of this section the administrative use permit process may determine that a new pole in the right-of-way is in fact a superior alternative based on the impact to the City, the concealment element design, the City’s Comprehensive Plan and the added benefits to the community.

4. Prior to the issuance of a permit to construct a new pole or ground-mounted equipment in the right-of-way, the applicant must obtain a site-specific agreement from the City to locate such new pole or ground-mounted equipment. This requirement also applies to replacement poles that are higher than the replaced pole, and the overall height of the replacement pole and the proposed wireless communications facility is more than 60 feet.

5. Installation of small wireless facilities in a design district (see MTMC 12.20.720(C)) shall be permitted by an administrative approval of a concealment plan utilizing the design and concealment standards contained in this chapter.

6. These design standards are intended to be used solely for the purpose of concealment and siting. Nothing herein shall be interpreted or applied in a manner which dictates the use of a particular technology. When strict application of these requirements would unreasonably impair the function of the technology chosen by the applicant or have the effect of prohibiting the provision of wireless service, alternative forms of concealment or deployment may be permitted which provide similar or greater results. (Ord. 2742 § 3, 2019).

19.137.090 Criteria for equipment enclosures.

A. The following criteria apply to all equipment enclosures, whether they are part of a WCF subject to administrative review or a WCF requiring a conditional use permit. Except for eligible facilities requests are permitted pursuant to Article VII of Chapter 12.20 MTMC. See MTMC 19.137.080 for small wireless facility deployment criteria regarding unified equipment enclosures.

1. Equipment enclosures shall not exceed six feet in any one dimension, unless it can be demonstrated by substantial evidence that compliance with this provision would materially inhibit the wireless provider’s ability to deliver services.

2. Equipment enclosures shall be located within buildings or placed underground wherever feasible.

3. When equipment enclosures cannot be located in buildings or underground, they shall be:

a. Designed to blend in with existing surroundings, using compatible or neutral colors and/or vegetative or other screening at least as tall as the enclosure;

b. Consistent with relevant design standards for the underlying zoning district; and

c. Located so as to be as unobtrusive as possible consistent with proper functioning of the WCF.

4. Equipment enclosures on a lot must meet all applicable setbacks for the underlying zoning district and be situated at least 25 feet from any public right-of-way, except on specific sites that are expressly reserved, in a plat thereof, for utility easements.

5. No noise shall be permitted to escape from equipment enclosures in excess of that permitted by Chapter 173-60 WAC. (Ord. 2742 § 3, 2019).

19.137.100 Height variance.

The Hearing Examiner may grant a height variance for a WCF upon finding that the criteria in MTMC 19.110.210(C) are met and that one of the following criteria is also met:

A. Compliance with the provisions of this chapter would materially inhibit the wireless provider’s ability to deliver services; or

B. The alternative proposed has less impact on property owners in the vicinity than strict application of the WCF height provisions; or

C. The WCF is an essential public facility under the definition in MTMC 18.05.080. (Ord. 2742 § 3, 2019).

19.137.110 Technical and safety requirements.

A. Construction and Installation. The construction and installation of antenna support structures, antennas, attachment support structures, and equipment enclosures shall be subject to the requirements of the City’s building code (with structural calculations provided by the applicant’s Washington-licensed engineer), including the City’s electrical code, and all applicable standards published by the Electronics Industries Association/Telecommunications Industries Association (EIA/TIA).

B. Artificial Lighting. No antenna support structures shall be artificially lighted except as required by the Federal Aviation Administration or other governmental agency.

C. Ladder Rungs. The Building Official shall determine if antenna support structures may have ladder rungs within 20 feet of the ground.

D. WCF Equipment Enclosures. WCF equipment enclosures shall be kept locked at all times and shall be clearly labeled as to the owner, operator, or a person to be contacted in the event of an emergency.

E. Sidewalks. WCFs shall not obstruct an existing public sidewalk or trail or the area of public right-of-way or easement reserved for a future public sidewalk or trail.

F. Street Lanes. WCFs shall not obstruct a traffic lane, parking lane or bicycle lane and shall not create a traffic or sight distance impairment. (Ord. 2742 § 3, 2019).

19.137.120 Independent technical review of WCF applications.

The City may retain the services of an independent technical expert of its choice to provide technical evaluation of permit applications for WCFs. The applicant shall pay all the costs of said review. Such third-party expert review is intended to be a site-specific review of technical aspects of the WCF permit application and not a subjective review of the WCF proposal. Based on the results of the third-party expert review, the City may require changes to the WCF application or impose conditions on its approval. (Ord. 2742 § 3, 2019).

19.137.130 WCF removal.

A. Owners and operators of WCFs shall provide the Director with copies of any notice of intent to cease operations that is provided to the Federal Communications Commission.

B. Any antenna support structure that has had no antenna mounted upon it for a period of 180 successive days, or if the antennas mounted thereon are not operated for a period of 180 successive days, shall be considered abandoned, and the owner thereof shall remove such structure and any accompanying equipment enclosure within 90 days after receipt of notice from the City to do so. If such structure and equipment enclosure are not so removed, the City may seek and obtain a court order directing such removal and imposing a lien upon the equipment and/or the real property upon which such structures are situated in an amount equal to the cost of removal. Any notice given under this section is subject to appeal to the Hearing Examiner. In the event that more than one wireless communication service provider is using the support structure, then the provision to lien the real property shall not become effective until all users cease using such structure.

C. Removal upon Undergrounding. A WCF must be removed at no expense to the City if co-located on a utility support structure that is subsequently undergrounded. (Ord. 2742 § 3, 2019).

19.137.140 Appeals.

WCF decisions other than administrative approvals relating to small wireless facilities, small wireless facility permits and eligible facilities requests, Articles VI and VII of Chapter 12.20 MTMC may be appealed in accordance with Article VII of Chapter 18.05 MTMC. The timely filing of an appeal of a WCF permit decision shall stay the effective date of the decision until such time as the appeal is concluded or withdrawn. (Ord. 2742 § 3, 2019).