20C.40.10 Downtown Districts.

20C.40.10-010 Purpose.

The purpose of this division of the Community Development Guide is to implement the Downtown vision and policies as described in the Comprehensive Plan. The Downtown neighborhood – less than one square mile in size – contains a series of sub-neighborhoods or districts. These individual districts will continue to develop as distinctly different places within the Downtown, characterized by different building heights, designs and land uses, distinctive entrance corridors, streetscapes, roadway designs, landscaping and amenities. This variety maintains diverse and easily recognizable districts that draw people to them and are easy to navigate through. The Downtown neighborhood is divided into 12 districts entitled “Valley View,” “Bear Creek,” “Trestle,” “Sammamish Trail,” “Town Square,” “Old Town,” “Anderson Park,” “River Bend,” “River Trail,” “East Hill,” “Carter,” and “Town Center.” They are shown on the map entitled “Downtown Districts” in RCDG 20C.40.20-015. The intent of each of the districts is as set forth below. (Ord. 2302; Ord. 1901)

20C.40.10-020 Old Town (OT).

The Old Town district is comprised of the original downtown and includes a number of historic structures and gathering places. The Old Town district is established to be a center of pedestrian-oriented retail activity in the Downtown neighborhood. The regulations shaping development in this district provide for an urban village pattern and rhythm which encourages narrow ground floor storefronts, small blocks, narrow streets with curbside parking, mixed-use residential/office/service buildings, and pedestrian-scale architecture. The regulations also encourage the enhancement of existing older buildings in Old Town with small ground floor retail spaces, characterized by narrow bay spacing complementary to pedestrian activity and interest, and office or residential spaces in upper stories. The pedestrian nature of the area is emphasized through lower parking requirements and plans for creation of parking lots/structures in a few central locations at the edge of these areas. This district provides for a full range of retail uses such as specialty and comparison shopping, eating and entertainment establishments, as well as general and professional services, and residential uses. (Ord. 2302; Ord. 1901)

20C.40.10-030 Town Center (TWNC).

Town Center is one of the City’s primary gathering places. Its mix of shops and restaurants, offices, hotel rooms and conference facilities, and eventually residences in the heart of the City is intended to bring people together during the day and evening for planned or casual meetings. The design of the buildings, street patterns, and public plazas are modern yet reflect the historic district in adjacent Old Town. Improvements in walking connections between the two districts will help both areas thrive. The long-term vision for Town Center is that it will continue to develop as a major gathering and entertainment place within the community, that its trails will be connected to Marymoor Park by a grade-separated connection across SR 520, and that transit service to and from the center will provide a choice equal in attractiveness to automobiles, walking, and biking. The design and development of this district is controlled by a Master Plan established to ensure that development here integrates with and positively influences future redevelopment of the greater downtown area, and retains traditional building styles, street patterns, variety of uses, and public amenities. (Ord. 2302; Ord. 1901)

20C.40.10-040 Valley View (VV), Trestle (TR), and Bear Creek (BC).

The convenience commercial areas of Downtown include the Valley View, Trestle, and Bear Creek districts. These three districts are located at the major entrances to the Downtown to serve shoppers conveniently from both within and outside the neighborhood. These districts are intended to provide for everyday, basic shopping needs and services, such as groceries, pharmacies, and other convenience retail goods and services that are easily accessed by pedestrians, bicyclists, and motor vehicles. Land uses and redevelopment in the area should be compatible with shopping and service needs of the community and surroundings, as well as with the long-term Downtown vision of encouraging a more pedestrian-supportive, mixed-use environment in these districts. (Ord. 2302; Ord. 1901)

20C.40.10-050 Sammamish Trail (SMT), Town Square (TSQ), Anderson Park (AP), and River Bend (RVBD).

The Downtown neighborhood contains four distinct mixed-use residential/office districts, all intended to provide for significant residential growth, as well as opportunities for growth in professional, business, health, and personal services. The distinction between the districts is reinforced through variations in design and development standards and minor variations in land use. These districts provide for a range of employment uses such as financial and professional services, public administrative offices, health services, advanced technology industries, universities and technical colleges, and other activities normally conducted in multi-story office structures. These districts are intended as areas for the densest employment and residential uses in the Downtown, but also provide for supporting retail, service, and entertainment uses located within walking distance of each other. Some of the quieter streets in these districts allow residential uses on the ground floor, whereas the primary streets are intended for active, pedestrian-friendly and activating commercial uses. (Ord. 2302; Ord. 1901)

20C.40.10-060 River Trail (RVT), Carter (CTR), and East Hill (EH).

Downtown includes three residential districts at the periphery of the neighborhood that are intended to retain a quieter “residential” character than the other nearby mixed-use areas. These districts will provide a variety of housing types that are not primarily mixed-use in developments that include more typical residential features, such as front yards, landscaping, and ground-related patios and porches. These areas are all located within walking distance to the various retail and service areas in the Downtown. (Ord. 2302; Ord. 1901)