Chapter 17B.20
IMPROVEMENTS REQUIRED Revised 12/18

Sections:

17B.20.005    Required Improvement Tables. Revised 12/18

17B.20.012    Lot Access Requirements. Revised 12/18

17B.20.014    Alternative to Lot Access Requirements.

17B.20.030    Access to Public Facilities.

17B.20.040    Minimum Existing Offsite Private Road Requirements. Revised 12/18

17B.20.050    Minimum Existing Offsite Public Roadway Width Requirements for Proposed Development. Revised 12/18

17B.20.060    Traffic Impact Analysis Requirements for Proposed Development – Public Roads.

17B.20.005 Required Improvement Tables. Revised 12/18

Tables 17B.20.005-1 and 17B.20.005-2 show the frontage and onsite roadway improvements required for commercial and residential type projects. Reference Title 18J PCC, Design Standards and Guidelines, for additional required improvements which may be specific to individual community plan areas. Additional improvements may also be warranted as a result of an approved traffic impact analysis.

Table 17B.20.005-1. Minimum Required Improvements for Commercial Projects

Commercial Project Types (12)

 

New Commercial – Utility (11)

New Commercial (4)(6)

Land Division (includes Binding Site Plan with public/private roads) (3)(4)

Binding Site Plan (with shared access facility only) (4)

Expansion <60% of the building value as calculated in the IBC (4)

Site Development/ FPA (7)

 

Urban

Rural

Urban

Rural

Urban

Rural

Urban

Rural

Urban

Rural

Urban

Rural

Required Improvements on Public Arterial Frontage Road (1)(2)(9)

Shoulder

6' min. width

Yes

Yes

Yes

Buffer or Stormwater Facility (12)

5' min. width

Yes

Yes

Yes

Sidewalk/Walkway

5' min. width

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Street Trees (5)

Yes

Yes

Yes

Required Improvements on Public Local Frontage Road (1)(2)(9)

Sidewalk/Walkway

5' min. width

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Street Trees (5)

Yes

Yes

Yes

Required On-Site Improvements (9)

Roads/Shared Access Facilities (10)

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Curb

Yes – traffic curb

Yes – traffic curb

Sidewalk

Yes

Street Trees (5)

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Street Lights

Yes

Connectivity per Pierce County Road Standards

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Driveway Approach

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

(8)

(8)

(8)

(8)

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Required Off-Site Improvements

Per PCC 17B.20.030

Yes

Yes

Per PCC 17B.20.040

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Per PCC 17B.20.050

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Notes:

(1)    Requirements for exterior sidewalk and pathway shall be waived by the Department whenever a transportation improvement project providing this infrastructure is included within Pierce County's Six Year Transportation Improvement Program and is fully funded.

(2)    Additional frontage improvements may be required as a result of a traffic impact analysis.

(3)    Land Division includes all land divisions in conformance with Title 18F PCC, Development Regulations – Land Divisions and Boundary Changes.

(4)    Traffic study required if more than 25 peak hour trips (PHT) will be generated by the development.

(5)    See specific street tree requirements within Title 18J PCC, Development Regulations – Design Standards and Guidelines.

(6)    New commercial includes: new commercial building permits; attached single family and multi family; use permits; expansion > 60 percent of the building value as calculated in the IBC; Mobile Home Parks. Other commercial uses may also apply.

(7)    Forest Practice Application (FPA). Haul route bond may be required.

(8)    Driveway approach required for shared access facilities, alley access and any lot proposed to have direct access to an existing public or private road.

(9)    Reference the Manual on Design Guidelines and Specifications for Road and Bridge Construction in Pierce County.

(10)    Legal and physical access must be provided to each proposed lot utilizing an appropriate county road or shared access standard.

(11)    Cell towers, water tank, and other utilities that require a building permit, but generate less than one ADT.

(12)    See also the Pierce County Stormwater Management and Site Development Manual.

Table 17B.20.005-2. Minimum Required Improvements for Residential Projects

Residential Project Types (13)

 

Detached Single Family/Dwelling Unit Planned Development District (4)(12)

Land Division > 2 lots (3)(4)(12)

Land Division < = 2 lots (3)(12)

Small Lot Subdivision (4)

Low Impact Subdivision (4)(8)

Single- and Two-Family Dwelling Units

 

Urban

Rural

Urban

Rural

Urban

Rural

Urban

Urban

Rural

Urban

Rural

Required Improvements on Public Arterial Frontage Road (1)(2)(7)

Shoulder

6' min. width

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Buffer or Stormwater Facility (13)

5' min. width

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Sidewalk/Walkway

5' min. width

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Street Trees (5)

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Required Improvements on Public Local Frontage Road (1)(2)(7)

Sidewalk/Walkway

5' min. width

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Street Trees (5)

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Required On-Site Improvements (7)(9)

Local Roads/Shared Access Facility (12)

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Small Lot Roads

Yes

LID Roads (8)

Yes

Yes

Curb

Yes – Traffic curb (11)

Yes – Traffic curb (11)

Yes – Traffic curb (11)

Sidewalk

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Street Trees (5)

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

(3)

Yes

Yes

Yes

Street Lights

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Road Connectivity per P.C. Road Standards (12)

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Sidewalk Connectivity (12)

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Driveway Approach

(6)

(6)

(6)

(6)

(6)

(6)

(6)

(6)

(6)

Yes

Yes

Required Off-Site Improvements

Per PCC 17B.20.040

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Per PCC 17B.20.050

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Per PCC 17B.20.012 and 17B.20.014

Yes

Yes

Per PCC 17B.10.116

Yes

Yes

Notes:

(1)    Requirements for exterior sidewalk and pathway shall be waived by the Department whenever a transportation improvement project providing this infrastructure is included within Pierce County's Six Year Transportation Improvement Program and is fully funded.

(2)    Additional frontage and offsite improvements may be required as a result of a traffic impact analysis.

(3)    Land Division: includes all land divisions in conformance with Title 18F PCC for both public and private roads.

(4)    Traffic study required if more than 25 peak hour trips (PHT) will be generated by the development.

(5)    See specific street tree requirements within Title 18J PCC, Development Regulations – Design Standards and Guidelines.

(6)    Driveway approach required for shared access facilities, alley access, and any lot proposed to have direct access to an existing public or private road.

(7)    Reference the Manual on Design Guidelines and Specifications for Road and Bridge Construction in Pierce County.

(8)    Projects that intend to utilize low impact development techniques for managing stormwater runoff must utilize the design criteria contained in Volume VI of the Pierce County Stormwater Management and Site Development Manual (Title 17A). These criteria shall be utilized for the design of all private roads, alleys, or shared accesses within the project. Volume VI supersedes certain standards, criteria, and requirements contained in Title 17B. Standards, criteria, and requirements within Title 17B not specifically superseded by Volume VI are still applicable to low impact developments.

(9)    Legal and physical access must be provided to each proposed lot utilizing an appropriate road or shared access standard.

(10)    Detached single-family dwelling unit Planned Development Districts can be served by a shared access facility if the average daily traffic (ADT) generated will be less than 60 ADT. Otherwise legal and physical access will need to be provided utilizing a County road standard.

(11)    When the length of full height traffic curbing is reduced to short segments due to driveway spacing, rolled curbing may be used with prior County approval.

(12)    Shared access facilities carry a maximum of 60 ADT. When shared access facilities are allowed, sidewalks, road connectivity, and sidewalk connectivity are not required.

(13)    See also the Pierce County Stormwater Management and Site Development Manual.

(Ord. 2018-68s § 1 (part), 2018; Ord. 2017-28s § 4 (part), 2017; Ord. 2015-55s § 1 (part), 2015; Ord. 2012-2s § 3 (part), 2012; Ord. 2010-70s § 6 (part), 2010)

17B.20.012 Lot Access Requirements. Revised 12/18

Any lot for which a single-family building permit is proposed shall adjoin or have legal access to an open right-of-way.

For a lot that was created by a subdivision, all road and access improvements specified or required through the subdivision process must be completed.

For lots that were not created by a subdivision, or lots that were created by a subdivision but no road and access improvements were specified through the subdivision process, all private roads, shared access facilities, easements or tracts that provide a legal vehicular access between the lot and the open public road shall have a minimum vehicle driving surface that is not less than 15 feet in width. Compliance with the Storm Water Management and Site Development Manual may require that a driveway be designed and constructed using permeable pavement. Driveways with grades of 12 percent or greater must be paved with asphalt or concrete. Acceptable driving surface pavement structural sections are located in the Pierce County Standard Drawings. The maximum longitudinal gradient is 15 percent. If the proposed access length is a dead-end 300 feet or longer without an approved turnaround, an approved turnaround is required on the subject property or approved alternative location. See Figure 17C.60.150-5.

The requirements of this Section must be met prior to issuance of a single-family building permit. (Ord. 2018-68s § 1 (part), 2018; Ord. 2015-55s § 1 (part), 2015; Ord. 2010-70s § 6 (part), 2010)

17B.20.014 Alternative to Lot Access Requirements.

Relief from road and access requirements established through a subdivision process may require a road deviation or land use process.

For situations where it is not physically or economically feasible to construct the access between the lot and a public road as described in PCC 17B.20.012, the following shall be required:

A.    Habitable structures shall have an approved fire sprinkler system meeting the requirements of NFPA;

B.    Title notification shall be recorded to provide notice to future purchasers that the access to the lot does not meet minimum standards, and additional fire protection features have been required; and

C.    Other improvements to the lot access and/or other fire protection related features on a case by case basis as determined by the Pierce County Fire Prevention Bureau.

(Ord. 2015-55s § 1 (part), 2015; Ord. 2010-70s § 6 (part), 2010)

17B.20.030 Access to Public Facilities.

A.    Purpose. The purpose of this Section is to ensure that access to public facilities is open to all members of the public and is properly designed and maintained.

B.    Applicability. This Section shall apply to all proposed public schools, fire stations, police stations, public libraries, public parks, and public recreational facilities.

C.    Exemptions. This Section shall not apply to the following facilities:

1.    Facilities owned and operated by a public school district that are not public schools. Examples include administration buildings, maintenance facilities, and other support facilities.

2.    Existing public facilities, including additions, remodels, and reconstruction of such facilities.

3.    New public schools constructed on property owned by a public school district prior to June 1, 2007.

4.    Educational skill centers located within commercial shopping centers or similar commercial complexes.

D.    Access Requirements. Public facilities which are subject to the requirements of this Section shall be accessed by a public roadway or private road. When a private road provides access to the facility, the private road shall meet the following:

1.    The private road shall have a minimum traveled surface width of 24 feet from the public facility to the nearest public road.

2.    The private road shall meet all applicable standards for private roads set forth in Title 17B including, but not limited to, the requirements set forth in PCC 17B.10.060, 17B.20.005, and 17B.20.040.

3.    The easement establishing the private road shall not be gated and the easement shall not prohibit or otherwise limit access to the public facility.

(Ord. 2010-70s § 6 (part), 2010; Ord. 99-24S § 6 (part), 1999)

17B.20.040 Minimum Existing Offsite Private Road Requirements. Revised 12/18

A.    When required by Tables 17B.20.005-1 and 17B.20.005-2, proposed developments must improve offsite existing private roads to meet the requirements contained in this Section. Reference PCC 17B.10.050 for the definition of "offsite existing private road."

B.    Existing offsite private roads and easements must meet the following minimum standards:

1.    Minimum Geometric Criteria (see Table 17B.20.040-3).

Table 17B.20.040-3. Minimum Existing Offsite Private Road Geometric Criteria by Average Daily Traffic

ADT (3)

Traveled Surface Width

Minimum Surfacing (5)(6)

Shoulder

<60 (Rural Area)

20 ft

Gravel (1)

not required

<60 (Urban Area)

20 ft

Paved (2)(4)

not required

60 - 500

20 ft

Paved (2)(4)

not required

>500

24 ft

Paved (2)(4)

not required

Notes:

(1)    "Gravel surface" is defined as two inches minimum of crushed surfacing top course over suitable gravel base or matching the existing gravel thickness, whichever is greater. Gravel surfacing shall be in accordance with Washington State Department of Transportation specifications. Must be able to support the imposed loads of fire apparatus and must provide all-weather driving capabilities.

(2)    "Paved surface" is defined as two inches of hot mix asphalt Class 1/2 inch over suitable gravel base or six inches of Portland cement concrete over suitable gravel base or matching the existing pavement section, whichever is greater. Pavement and subgrade materials shall be in accordance with Washington State Department of Transportation specifications.

(3)    "Average daily traffic or ADT" for the purposes of this Table is equivalent to 10 vehicle trips per day for each dwelling unit or each existing or proposed lot that accesses onto the private road or access easement. Traffic generation for other uses (commercial, non-residential, etc.) will be in accordance with the latest publication of "Trip Generation," by the Institute of Traffic Engineers or other County-approved sources. The ADT figure shall include the existing ADT, the ADT from the proposed development, as well as the ADT from other proposed projects. Other proposed projects will only be included in the ADT figure if they submitted a complete application prior to the proposed development being reviewed. ADT can vary along certain segments for any given roadway. For purposes of the above table, the highest ADT for any given segment on a private road shall be utilized as the basis for determining the necessary improvements for the entire roadway. There shall be no variation in improvement requirements along the entire roadway due to changes in ADT along the roadway.

(4)    A subdivision that proposes two lots and limits each lot to one primary dwelling unit and one accessory dwelling unit is not required to pave the existing off-site private road except when the grade exceeds 12 percent.

(5)    For roadways that require complete new surfaces, the minimum surfacing shall be permeable pavement, if feasible. If all new surfacing is not required, the surfacing identified above is acceptable.

(6)    Permeable pavement shall be designed in accordance with the Pierce County Stormwater Management and Site Development Manual and the Pierce County Road Standards.

2.    Vertical Clearance. The private road or easement must have an unobstructed vertical clearance of not less than 13 feet 6 inches. The County, after conferring with the local fire chief, may allow a reduction in the vertical clearance, provided such reduction does not impair access by emergency vehicles, and approved signs are installed and maintained indicating the established vertical clearance.

3.    Bridges and Structures. All bridges and structures, including drainage structures must be capable of carrying a minimum design load of HS-25 per "Standard Specifications for Highway Bridges," as published by the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials. The County may require that the capacity of bridges and structures be certified by a licensed structural engineer.

4.    Easements or Tracts. Private road easements or tracts must be of sufficient width so as to completely contain the minimum required traveled way, minimum shoulder and any associated drainage features. The County may require survey information to verify that the traveled way, shoulder area and associated drainage features are located within the documented easement or tract.

5.    Obstructions. Obstructions, including but not limited to, street lighting, poles, power poles, utility boxes, telephone boxes, street trees, retaining walls, fire hydrants and/or landscaping material, shall not be located within the required minimum traveled way or minimum shoulder area. Sight obscuring objects must be removed or relocated to provide sight distance as required in Table 17B.20.040-4.

6.    Traffic Signs.

a.    Road Signs and Road Names. All private roads must have private road name signs that meet the requirements outlined in this Title and the "Manual on Design Guidelines and Specifications for Road and Bridge Construction in Pierce County." All private roads shall be named and/or numbered in accordance with Chapter 10.44 PCC.

b.    Stop Signs. All private road approaches to County arterial roads shall have a stop sign installed and maintained by the property owners, in accordance with the requirements of this Title and the "Manual on Design Guidelines and Specifications for Road and Bridge Construction in Pierce County."

c.    Speed Limit Signs. Speed limit signs are required and must be maintained by the property owners. Speed limit signs must meet and must be installed according to the engineer's recommendation. The posted speed limit must be consistent with the available entering sight distance and stopping sight distance.

7.    Grades. Road grades in excess of 12 percent must have a paved surface meeting the requirements of Table 17B.20.040-3.

8.    Medians. A road separated by a median shall have a minimum traveled surface width of 15 feet on each side of the median. Fire hydrants must be located on both sides of the median or accessible from both sides.

9.    Turnarounds. Cul-de-sacs or intersections are required at a minimum of 1,500 feet measured along the road centerline from intersection/cul-de-sac to intersection/cul-de-sac.

C.    Entering sight distance, stopping sight distance, and maximum grade shall meet the minimum requirement of the Manual on Design Guidelines and Specifications for Road and Bridge Construction in Pierce County.

(Ord. 2018-68s § 1 (part), 2018; Ord. 2017-28s § 4 (part), 2017; Ord. 2015-55s § 1 (part), 2015; Ord. 2010-70s § 6 (part), 2010)

17B.20.050 Minimum Existing Offsite Public Roadway Width Requirements for Proposed Development. Revised 12/18

A.    The provisions of this Section shall apply to all proposed development meeting the definition in PCC 17B.10.050.

B.    The requirements listed in Table 17B.20.050-5 apply to existing local and collector arterial County roads that serve as access to proposed development and which show an increase of 25 or more daily trips.

Table 17B.20.050-5. Minimum Existing Offsite Public Roadway

Width Requirements for Proposed Development 

Average Daily Traffic Volume Including New Development Traffic (1)

50-400 vehicles per day

401-800 vehicles per day

801-1200 vehicles per day

Over 1200 vehicles per day (2)

Paved Road (4)(5):

Pavement width (not including shoulder)

14'

16'

18'

20'

Total roadway width

16'

20'

22'

24'

Unpaved Road (4)(5):

Road width (3)

16'

Notes:

(1)    If Average Daily Traffic including new development traffic (existing traffic volume plus proposed traffic generation) is less than 50 vehicles per day, then no improvement is necessary. For collector arterial roadways, the above Table shall only apply if the proposed development adds 800 or more daily trips to the roadway.

(2)    If average daily traffic including new development traffic is greater than 2,500 vehicles per day, then the proposed development shall be subject to review by the County Engineer and may be required to improve the existing roadway up to current County standards.

(3)    No new commercial development shall be allowed access using an unpaved road.

(4)    For roadways that require complete new surfaces, the minimum surfacing shall be permeable pavement, if feasible. If all new surfacing is not required, the surfacing identified above is acceptable.

(5)    Permeable pavement shall be designed in accordance with the Pierce County Stormwater Management and Site Development Manual and the Pierce County Road Standards.

C.    Proposed developments that do not meet the above outlined Offsite Public Roadway Width Requirements shall be required to improve the existing roadway consistent with Table 17B.20.050-5. Any deviation from these requirements shall require the approval of the County Engineer following the prescribed deviation process in PCC 17B.10.090 A.

(Ord. 2018-68s § 1 (part), 2018; Ord. 2015-55s § 1 (part), 2015; Ord. 2010-70s § 6 (part), 2010)

17B.20.060 Traffic Impact Analysis Requirements for Proposed Development – Public Roads.

A.    Purpose. The provisions of this Section are intended to promote and assist in the timely and orderly review of traffic impacts caused by proposed developments, and to create, to the extent possible, uniform requirements for submittal by applicants. This Section authorizes the County Engineer to develop procedures for conducting a traffic impact analysis (TIA), specifies the conditions under which a TIA is required, and defines the general contents of the TIA. These requirements are in addition to an applicant's obligation to pay traffic impact fees pursuant to Title 4A PCC.

B.    County Engineer Authorization for Administrative Policies and Technical Procedures. The County Engineer is authorized to adopt administrative policies and technical procedures in order to administer this Section. The administrative policies and technical procedures may include, but are not limited to, such subjects as the contents and scope of the TIA, the methodologies to be used in preparing the TIA, and the nature and extent of the improvement(s) necessary to mitigate the traffic impacts caused by a proposed development. The administrative policies and technical procedures shall be available for inspection at the Office of County Engineer during normal business hours or may be purchased, for a reproduction fee, as specified in Pierce County Code.

C.    Traffic impact Analysis – When Required. An applicant shall prepare and submit a TIA for all proposed developments that are projected to generate 25 or more peak-hour trips. The County Engineer may require a TIA for a proposed development that generates fewer than 25 peak-hour trips to evaluate special or unique traffic concerns, such as, but not limited to, developments that generate a high proportion of heavy truck traffic. The requirements for a TIA may be waived if the County Engineer determines that there is sufficient information available from previous traffic impact analyses to determine traffic impacts and mitigation needs for a proposed development.

D.    Traffic Impact Analysis – Scope and Contents.

1.    The scope of the TIA shall be developed by the applicant and approved by the County Engineer prior to submittal of the TIA. At a minimum, the scope of the TIA shall include the following:

a.    Identification and description of the proposed development.

b.    Trip Generation and Distribution for the proposed development.

c.    Trip Assignment at all arterial intersections through which at least 25 trips of development traffic pass during the peak hour.

d.    Roadway connectivity analysis which shall evaluate the local and arterial connections.

e.    An access analysis, which shall include the analysis of all driveway, alley, shared access facility, and private road access points from the proposed development to any County road, and along any local roads between the proposed development and the arterial road system, including the local road intersection(s) with the arterial road system. At a minimum, the access analysis shall determine the need for left-turn pockets or two-way left turn lanes using the warrant methodology published in Highway Research Record 211, Highway Research Board, 1967. The access analysis shall also determine the need for additional capacity improvements using the latest version of the Highway Capacity Manual, as published by the Transportation Research Board.

f.    For proposed developments that contain commercial uses, analysis of all arterial intersections through which at least 500 trips of development traffic pass during the peak hour. The analysis shall include the identification of any traffic impacts and the associated mitigation at these intersections, as directed by the County Engineer.

2.    The County Engineer may require a more detailed TIA for a proposed development that is anticipated to generate substantial Peak-Hour trips that are in addition to trips included within the County's traffic model that was used to develop the traffic impact Fee Program and/or traffic impact Fee assumptions. The County Engineer will consider such factors as the relationship of the proposed development to the Comprehensive Plan, proximity of the proposed development to sensitive County roads and intersections, and likelihood of mitigation not addressed by impact fee projects.

3.    The County Engineer may require an applicant to provide additional data and/or analysis to evaluate special or unique traffic concerns.

4.    The TIA shall document traffic improvements that are proposed by the applicant for access to the proposed development, or to mitigate traffic impacts created by commercial proposed developments. The applicant, in developing recommendations for mitigation, should consider the following:

a.    Current and programmed county road improvement projects, including the timing and/or funding of those projects;

b.    Traffic improvements planned by other proposed developments;

c.    Traffic improvements planned by other agencies or jurisdictions;

d.    The feasibility of the proposed traffic improvements;

e.    Consistency of proposed improvements with County design and construction standards, policies, and practices;

f.    Relationship of the proposed traffic improvements to any impact fee project;

h.    Any other condition with a probable likelihood of being an adverse traffic impact.

E.    Traffic impact Analysis – Review. The applicant shall submit the TIA to the County Engineer, who shall review each TIA for accuracy and proper methodology.

1.    For all TIAs, the County Engineer shall review the applicant's proposed traffic improvements related to the proposed development's access points to any County road, local roads between the proposed development and the arterial road system, local road intersection(s) with the arterial road system, and roadway connectivity.

2.    For TIAs prepared for commercial proposed developments, the County Engineer shall also review the analysis of all arterial intersections through which at least 500 trips of development traffic pass during the peak hour, and the applicant's proposal of traffic improvements to mitigate any traffic impacts identified by the applicant at these intersections.

3.    The County Engineer shall determine which transportation improvements shall be required of the development proposal as a result of the review. If a required traffic improvement is included as part of the County's current traffic impact fee project list, the applicant will be eligible for traffic impact fee credits for those respective improvements implemented as part of the proposed development.

(Ord. 2010-70s § 6 (part), 2010)