SALES/MARKETING TRAILERS, ON-SITE: Trailers used for temporary on-site sales and marketing of developments and/or construction sites.

SALMONID MIGRATION BARRIER: An in-stream blockage that consists of a natural drop (no human influence) with an uninterrupted slope greater than one hundred percent (100%) (forty five (45) degree angle) and a height in excess of eleven (11) vertical feet within anadromous salmon-bearing waters or a height in excess of three (3) vertical feet within resident trout-only bearing waters. Human-made barriers to salmonid migration (e.g., culverts, weirs, etc.) shall be considered barriers to salmonid migration by this definition, only if they were lawfully installed; permanent; present a complete barrier to salmonid passage based on hydraulic drop, water velocity, water depth, or any other feature which would prevent all salmonids from passing upstream; and in the opinion of the Community and Economic Development Administrator cannot be modified to provide salmonid passage without resulting in significant impacts to other environmental resources, major transportation and utility systems, or to the public, and would have significant expense. For the purposes of this definition, “significant expense” means a cost equal to or greater than fifty percent (50%) of the combined value of the proposed site buildings, structures, and/or site improvements, and existing buildings, structures, and/or site improvements to be retained.

SCHOOLS/STUDIOS, ARTS AND CRAFTS: Schools and studios for education in various arts and crafts including but not limited to photography, dance, music, and language skills.

SCOUR: The erosive action of running water in streams, which excavates and carries away material from the bed and banks. Scour may occur in both earth and solid rock material.


SECURE COMMUNITY TRANSITION FACILITY (SCTF): A residential facility for persons civilly committed and conditionally released to a less restrictive alternative under chapter 71.09 RCW. A secure community transition facility has supervision and security, and either provides or ensures the provision of sex offender treatment services. Secure community transition facilities include but are not limited to the facilities established pursuant to RCW 71.09.250 and any community-based facilities established under chapter 71.09 RCW and operated by or under contract with the Washington State Department of Social and Health Services. (Ord. 4982, 9-23-2002)

SEGREGATION: Division of land into lots or tracts each of which is one-one hundred twenty eighth (1/128) of a section of land or larger, or five (5) acres or larger if the land is not capable of description as a fraction of a section of land.


SEPA: The State Environmental Policy Act of 1971 (chapter 43.21C RCW).

SERVICEABLE: Presently usable.

SERVICES, OFF-SITE: Establishments primarily engaged in providing individual or professional services at the customer’s home or place of business. Examples of off-site services include, but are not limited to, temporary employment services, janitorial services, and professional house cleaner services. This definition excludes social service organizations and on-site services.

SERVICES, ON-SITE: Establishments primarily engaged in providing individual or professional services within the place of business, such as beauty and barber shops, retail laundry and dry-cleaning including coin-operated, garment alterations and repair, photo studios, shoe repair, pet grooming, real estate offices, personal accountants, indoor rental services, and repair of personal or household items, except for vehicle repair. This definition excludes adult retail uses, social service organizations, and off-site services.

SETBACK: The minimum required distance between the building footprint and the property line and any private access easement or tract. For lots containing private access easements, setbacks are the minimum required distance between the building footprint and the easement. A setback is measured perpendicularly from a lot line or private easement access to the outer wall of the structure. In the case where a structure does not have an outer wall, such as a carport, the measurement shall be to the posts of such structure, unless otherwise determined by the Department of Community and Economic Development.

SETBACK: (This definition for RMC 4-3-090, Shoreline Master Program Regulations, use only.) A required land area specified in the Shoreline Master Program, measured horizontally upland from and perpendicular to the vegetation conservation buffer, within which no buildings or other permanent structures may be constructed and that serves to protect the vegetation conservation buffer during development activities, use, and routine maintenance of structures and improvements landward of the building setback.

SETBACK LINE, LEGAL: The line established by ordinance beyond which no building may be built.

SEWAGE: See RMC 4-6-100.

SEWAGE DISPOSAL AND TREATMENT PLANTS: A facility designed for the collection, removal, treatment, and disposal of waterborne sewage. This definition excludes disposal facilities.


SEWAGE WORKS: See RMC 4-6-100.

SEWER: See RMC 4-6-100.


SEWER, PUBLIC: See RMC 4-6-100.


SHARED PARKING: Use of a parking area for more than one use.

SHOPPING CENTER: A group of buildings, structures and/or uncovered commercial areas, or a single building containing four (4) or more individual commercial establishments, planned, developed and managed as a unit related in location and type of shops to the trade areas that the unit serves.

SHORELAND or SHORELAND AREAS: Those lands extending landward for two hundred feet (200') in all directions, as measured on a horizontal plane from ordinary high water mark; floodways and contiguous floodplain areas landward two hundred feet (200') from such floodways; and all marshes, bogs, swamps, and river deltas, associated with streams, lakes and tidal waters which are subject to the provisions of the State Shorelines Management Act. For purposes of determining jurisdictional area, the boundary will be either two hundred feet (200') from the ordinary high water mark, or two hundred feet (200') from the floodway, whichever is greater.

SHORELINE STABILIZATION: Structural and nonstructural methods to address erosion impacts to property and dwellings, businesses, or structures caused by natural processes, such as currents, floods, tides, wind, or wave action.

SHORELINES: All of the water areas of the State regulated by the City of Renton, including reservoirs, and their associated shorelands, together with the lands underlying them, except:

1. Shorelines of statewide significance.

2. Shorelines on segments of streams upstream of a point where the mean annual flow is twenty (20) cubic feet per second or less and the wetlands associated with such upstream segments.

3. Shorelines on lakes less than twenty (20) acres in size and wetlands associated with such small lakes.

SHORELINES OF STATEWIDE SIGNIFICANCE: Those shorelines described in RCW 90.58.030(2)(e).

SHORELINES OF THE STATE: The total of all “shorelines” and “shorelines of statewide significance” regulated by the City of Renton.

SHORT PLAT: The map or representation of a short subdivision. See PLAT, SHORT.


SIDE SEWER: See RMC 4-6-100.



SIDEWALK: A concrete walkway separated from the roadway by a curb, planting strip or roadway shoulder.


SIGN: Any medium, including merchandise, its structure and component parts, that is used or intended to be used to attract attention to the subject matter for advertising purposes. Signs do not include sculptures, wall paintings, murals, collages, and other design features determined to be public art by the City.


SIGN, ANIMATED: A sign with action or motion, flashing or color changes requiring electrical energy, electronic or manufactured source of supply, but not including revolving signs or wind actuated elements such as flags or banners.

SIGN AREA: A measurement of the total area of a sign visible from any one viewpoint or direction, excluding the sign support structure, architectural embellishments, or, framework that contains no written copy, or does not form part of the sign proper or of the display. Freestanding letters or characters, where no background is specially provided, shall be measured by determining the smallest rectangle or polygon that encloses the extreme limits of the shapes to be used.

SIGN, COMBINATION: Any sign incorporating any combination of the features of pole, projecting and roof signs.

SIGN, ELECTRIC: Any sign containing or utilizing electrical wiring, but not including signs illuminated by an exterior light source.

SIGN, ELECTRONIC MESSAGE BOARD: Signs whose alphabetic, pictographic, or symbolic informational content can be changed or altered on a fixed display screen composed of electrically illuminated segments.

SIGN, FREESTANDING: A sign wholly supported by a sign structure in the ground.

SIGN, GROUND: A type of freestanding sign, other than a freestanding pole sign, in which the sign is in contact with or close to the ground, has a solid base anchor, and is independent of any other structure.

SIGN HEIGHT: Measured as the distance from grade, unless otherwise designated, to the top of the sign or sign structure.

SIGN, ON-PREMISES: A sign which displays only advertising copy strictly incidental to the lawful use of the premises on which it is located, including signs or sign devices indicating the business transacted at, services rendered, goods sold or produced on the immediate premises, name of the business, person, firm or corporation occupying the premises.

SIGN, POLITICAL: Signs advertising a candidate or candidates for public, elective office or a political party, or signs urging a particular vote or action on a public issue decided by ballot whether partisan or nonpartisan.

SIGN, PORTABLE: A sign not permanently affixed which is designed for or capable of movement, except for those signs explicitly designed for people to carry on their persons or which are permanently affixed to motor vehicles.

A. Sign, A-Frame: A nonilluminated type of portable sign comprised of hinged panels configured in the shape of the alphabetic letter “A.” These signs contact the ground but are not anchored to the ground and are independent of any other structure.

SIGN, PRIMARY ENTRY: A type of freestanding sign, other than a pole sign, of ten feet (10') or less in height, in which the sign is in contact with the ground, has a solid base anchor, and is independent of any other structure and serves the function of directing customers to the main entrance of a multi-tenant building or multi-building complex.

SIGN, PROJECTING: A sign other than a wall sign which projects from and is supported by a wall or a building or structure, and does not extend above any adjacent parapet or roof of the supporting building.

SIGN, REAL ESTATE: A sign advertising and/or directing individuals to the sale, rent or lease of property.

A. Commercial Real Estate Banner Sign: A sign of any shape made of lightweight fabric or similar material that is mounted to a building by any means, and indicating that the property is for sale, rent, or lease. National flags, state or municipal flags, holiday flags, or the official flag of any institution or business shall not be considered banners.

B. Decorative Real Estate Flag: A portion of lightweight fabric or similar material, supported by a vertical or horizontal staff, intended to flutter in the wind, and is used to attract attention to any type of residential development for sale, rent, or lease. National flags, state or municipal flags, holiday flags, or the official flag of any institution or business shall not be considered banners.

C. Freestanding Real Estate Signs: Any type of nonilluminated freestanding sign, indicating that the property on which it is located, is for sale, rent, or lease. This sign type includes yardarm or ground signs.

D. Open House Sign: A nonilluminated type of portable sign comprised of hinged panels configured in the shape of the alphabetic letter “A,” no larger than thirty two inches wide by thirty six inches high (32" by 36") per each sign face. The sign text for an open house sign contains the phrase: “open” or “for sale” or “for rent” or “for lease.”

E. Real Estate Directional Sign: Any nonilluminated type of freestanding sign that provides direction to property(ies) for sale, rent, or lease. Within the City Center Sign Regulation Boundaries (as shown in RMC 4-4-100H3), real estate directional signs may also include portable signs comprised of hinged panels configured in the shape of the alphabetic letter “A.”

F. Real Estate Sign Kiosk: A City-approved monument style sign in the public right-of-way or on private property consolidating numerous real estate directional signs and designed to reduce sign clutter.

G. Real Estate Sign Kiosk Directional Panel: A sign affixed within an approved real estate sign kiosk indicating direction to various real estate developments.

SIGN, ROOF: A sign erected upon or above a roof or parapet of a building or structure.

SIGN STRUCTURE: Any structure which supports or is capable of supporting any sign as defined in this Title. A sign structure may be a single pole and may not be an integral part of the building.

SIGN, TEMPORARY: Any sign, banner, or advertising display constructed of cloth, canvas, light fabric, cardboard, wallboard or other light materials, with or without frames, or advertising device intended to be displayed only for a limited period of time including the following types of signs:

A. Advertising Device: Balloons, flags, inflatable statuary and figures, light strings, pennants/streamers, portable readerboards, searchlights, wind-animated devices, and similar devices of a carnival nature.

B. Balloon: A spherical, flexible, nonporous bag inflated with air or gas lighter than air, such as helium, and intended to float in the air.

C. Banner: Any sign of lightweight fabric or similar material that is mounted to a pole and/or building by any means. National flags, state or municipal flags, holiday flags, or the official flag of any institution or business shall not be considered banners. A banner is not defined by shape and may be square, rectangular, round, triangular/pennant shaped, etc.

1. Banner, Pole Hung: A banner attached at its top and bottom to a pole or light standard by extensions from the pole.

2. Banner, Pole/Wall Strung: A banner attached at its top and bottom corners strung between buildings, poles, and/or light standards.

3. Banner, Wall Hung: A banner attached to a building and where the banner lies flat against the building surface at all times.

D. Devices of a Carnival Nature: All temporary signs, advertising devices, lights, and other means of attracting attention, which are commonly associated with carnival settings, and which are not otherwise specifically identified in the Renton Municipal Code. Fabric or plastic bunting shall be considered one type of carnival device.

E. Flag: A piece of cloth or plastic, supported by a vertical or horizontal staff, which is intended to flutter in the wind.

F. Inflatable Statuary: An advertising device that is inflated and the likeness of an animate or inanimate object or cartoon figure is used to attract attention, advertise, promote, market, or display goods and/or services.

G. Manual Message Board: Any sign that is designed so that characters, letters, or illustrations can be changed or rearranged by hand without altering the face or the surface of the sign.

H. Pennant/Streamer: An individual object and/or series of small objects made of lightweight plastic, fabric, or other material, which may or may not contain text, which is suspended from and/or twined around a rope, wire, or string.

I. Readerboards, Portable: A sign which is self-supporting but not permanently attached to the ground or building and can be moved from one location to another and is typically internally illuminated. Portable readerboards are also known as “trailer signs.”

J. Sign, Rigid Portable: A sign which is not permanently affixed and designed for or capable of movement. Those signs explicitly designed for people to carry on their persons or which are permanently affixed to motor vehicles are considered to be rigid portable signs. A rigid portable sign is not considered to be a portable readerboard or “trailer sign.”

K. Sign, Window: Any sign, temporary or permanent, designed to communicate information about an activity, business, commodity, event, sale, or service, that is placed inside a window. Interior display of merchandise for sale, including accessory mannequins and other props, shall not be considered window signs.

L. Wind-Animated Object: Any device, e.g., windsocks, pinwheels, whirligigs, etc., whose primary movements are caused by the wind or atmospheric conditions, attached by a tether. A balloon or inflatable statuary, with or without moveable parts, is not considered a wind-animated object.

SIGN, TRADITIONAL MARQUEE: A sign typically associated with movie theaters, performing arts theaters, and theatrical playhouses. The sign is attached flat against and parallel to the surface of a marquee structure. In addition, a changeable copy area is included where characters, letters, or illustrations can be changed or rearranged without altering the face or the surface of the sign.

SIGN, UNDER MARQUEE: A lighted or unlighted display attached to the underside of a marquee protruding over public or private sidewalks. Under marquee signs may also be called “under awning” or “under canopy” signs.

SIGN, WALL: Any sign painted, attached or erected against the wall of a building or structure, with the exposed face of the sign in a plane parallel to the plane of said wall. In order to be considered a wall sign, a sign may not extend above any adjacent parapet or the roof of the supporting building.

SIGNIFICANT #2 RATING: A rating assigned to wetlands in King County that are greater than one acre in size; equal to or less than one acre in size and having a forested vegetation class; or the presence of heron rookeries or raptor nesting trees.


SITE: A single lot, or two (2) or more contiguous lots that, under common ownership or documented legal control, were developed or are part of a development proposal.

SITE PLAN: A detailed plan drawing, prepared to scale, showing accurate boundaries of a site and the location of all buildings, structures, uses, and principal site development features proposed for a specific parcel or parcels of land.

SLOPE: An inclined ground surface the inclination of which is expressed as a ratio of horizontal distance to vertical distance, which may be regulated or unregulated.

SLOPE, STEEP: A hillside, or portion thereof, which falls into one of two (2) classes of slope, sensitive or protected.

A. Slope, Protected: A hillside, or portion thereof, with an average slope, as identified in the City of Renton Steep Slope Atlas or in a method approved by the City, of forty percent (40%) or greater grade and having a minimum vertical rise of fifteen feet (15').

B. Slope, Sensitive: A hillside, or portion thereof, characterized by: (1) an average slope, as identified in the City of Renton Steep Slope Atlas or in a method approved by the City, of twenty five percent (25%) to less than forty percent (40%); or (2) an average slope, as identified in the City of Renton Steep Slope Atlas or in a method approved by the City, of forty percent (40%) or greater with a vertical rise of less than fifteen feet (15'), abutting an average slope, as identified in the City of Renton Steep Slope Atlas or in a method approved by the City, of twenty five percent (25%) to forty percent (40%). This definition excludes engineered retaining walls.

SMOKING LOUNGE: A club or facility where smoking occurs, including but not limited to the smoking of any kind of lighted pipe, cigar, cigarette, or any other lighted smoking equipment.

SMP: City of Renton’s Shoreline Master Program.

SOCIAL SERVICE ORGANIZATIONS: Public or nonprofit agencies that provide counseling, therapy, job training, educational classes, food banks, clothing banks, or other social or human services to persons needing such services, but do not provide crisis intervention, day or night shelter, or case management. This does not include religious institutions, offices, government facilities, schools, hospitals, clinics, day care, homeless services uses, medical institutions, diversion facilities, lodging in any form, or residential uses.

SOIL ENGINEER: A licensed civil engineer experienced and knowledgeable in the practice of soil engineering.

SOIL ENGINEERING: The application of the principles of soil mechanics in the investigation, evaluation and design of civil works involving the use of earth or other materials and the inspection and testing of the construction thereof.

SOIL ENGINEERING REPORT: A report including data regarding the nature, distribution, and strength of existing soils, conclusions and recommendations for grading procedures and design criteria for corrective measures when necessary, and options and recommendations covering adequacy of sites to be developed by the proposed grading.

SOLAR ACCESS: Sunlight exposure on land without impairment by other development.

SOLAR ENERGY SYSTEM: A device or structural design feature, a substantial purpose of which is to provide for interior lighting or provide for the collection, storage, and distribution of solar energy for space heating or cooling, electricity generation, or water heating.

SOLAR ENERGY SYSTEM, GROUND MOUNTED, SMALL-SCALE: A solar energy system that is structurally mounted to the ground and typically a size that would service a house, small business, or small municipal building.

SOLID WASTE: Shall be defined pursuant to WAC 173-350-100.


1. Less than completely and opaquely covered human genitals, anus, pubic region, buttock, or female breast below a point immediately above the top of the areola; or

2. Human male genitals in a discernibly turgid state, even if completely and opaquely covered.


1. Human genitals in a state of sexual stimulation or arousal;

2. Acts of human masturbation, sexual intercourse, sodomy, oral copulation, or bestiality;

3. Fondling or other erotic touching of human genitals, pubic region, buttocks, or female breasts, whether clothed or unclothed, of oneself or of one person by another; or

4. Excretory functions as part of or in connection with any of the activities set forth in this definition.

SPORTS ARENAS, AUDITORIUMS, AND EXHIBITION HALLS, INDOOR: A large enclosed facility used for professional, semi-professional spectator sports, arena concerts, expositions, and other large-scale public gatherings. This definition includes stadiums, concert halls, auditoriums, exhibition halls, and accessory eating and drinking establishments. This definition excludes sports arenas or stadiums associated with schools, cultural facilities, movie theaters, and entertainment clubs.

SPORTS ARENAS, OUTDOOR: A large outdoor facility used for professional, semi-professional spectator sports, arena concerts, and other large-scale public gatherings. This definition includes but is not limited to stadiums, concert arenas, and accessory eating and drinking establishments. This definition excludes sports arenas or stadiums associated with schools, cultural facilities, movie theaters, and entertainment clubs.

STABLES, COMMERCIAL: A land use on which large lot domestic animals are kept for sale or hire to the public. Breeding, boarding, or training of large lot domestic animals may also be conducted.

STACKING SPACE: The space specifically designated as a waiting area for vehicles whose occupants will be patronizing a drive-through business. Such space is considered to be located directly alongside a drive-in window, facility or entrance used by patrons and in lanes leading up to the business establishment.

START OF CONSTRUCTION: Includes substantial improvement and means the date the building permit was issued; provided, the actual start of construction, repair, reconstruction, placement or other improvement was within one hundred eighty (180) days of the permit date. The “actual start” means either the first placement of permanent construction of a structure on a site, such as the pouring of slab or footings, the installation of piles, the construction of columns, or any work beyond the stage of excavation; or the placement of a manufactured home on a foundation. Permanent construction does not include land preparation, such as clearing, grading and filling; nor does it include the installation of streets and/or walkways; nor does it include excavation for a basement, footings, piers, or foundation or the erection of temporary forms; nor does it include the installation on the property of accessory buildings, such as garages or sheds not occupied as dwelling units or not part of the main structure. For a substantial improvement, the “actual start of construction” means the first alteration of any wall, ceiling, floor, or other structural part of a building, whether or not that alteration affects the external dimensions of the building.


1. The holding or stockpiling on land of material and/or products where such storage constitutes forty percent (40%) of the developed site area and the storage area is at least one acre, and where at least three (3) of the following criteria are met by the storage activity:

a. In a bulk form or in bulk containers;

b. Under protective cover to the essential exclusion of other uses of the same space due to special fixtures or exposed to the elements;

c. In sufficient numbers, quantities or spatial allocation of the site to determine and rank such uses as the principal use of the site;

d. The major function is the collection and/or distribution of the material and/or products rather than processing; and

e. The presence of fixed bulk containers or visible stockpiles for a substantial period of a year.

2. Bulk storage facilities include, but are not limited to:

a. Automobile holding and transfer depots;

b. Brick or tile storage and manufacturing;

c. Concrete block and products storage and manufacturing;

d. Contractor equipment yards;

e. Equipment or machinery of the stationary type not in use, not mounted on necessary foundations or connected as required when during use, not designated and used as portable, and not stored in a warehouse. This includes operable motor vehicles or wheeled equipment used only periodically where storage durations exceed those provided for parking lots as defined in RMC 4-4-080, Parking, Loading and Driveway Regulations;

f. Foundries;

g. Fuel yards, wholesale;

h. Grain or feed sites, elevators, or the open storage of grain and feed;

i. Log, random cut and chipped wood by-products storage;

j. Lumber mills and wholesalers;

k. Sand and gravel yards including sizing, transfer and loading equipment when present;

l. Scrap or junk yards and wrecking yards;

m. Solid waste holding and disposal areas;

n. Tank farms including distribution and loading systems.

3. Bulk storage facilities exclude:

a. Land banks, greenbelts, watersheds or public water reservoirs;

b. Parking lots or structures for private licensed automobiles;

c. Ship yards;

d. Warehouses alone or in conjunction with manufacturing on the site and when not including any of the uses listed above in subsection (2)(a) through (2)(n) of this definition;

e. Facilities for storage of petroleum or any of its by-products, for use incidental to the primary use of the property (e.g., heating, boiler or vehicular fuel or lubricants);

f. Retail service stations;

g. Retail sales lots for new or used automobiles.

STORAGE, HAZARDOUS MATERIAL, ON-SITE OR OFF-SITE, INCLUDING TREATMENT: A facility engaged in storage of materials, produced on-site or brought from another site, that are inflammable, explosive, or that present hazards to the public health, safety, and welfare including all substances and materials as defined under hazardous materials, hazardous substances, and hazardous waste.

STORAGE, OUTDOOR: The outdoor accumulation of material or equipment for the purpose of sale, rental, use on site, or shipping to other locations. This definition excludes bulk storage, hazardous material storage, warehousing and distribution, vehicle storage, and outdoor retail sales.

STORAGE, SELF-SERVICE: A building or group of buildings consisting of individual, self-contained units leased to individuals, organizations, or businesses for self-service storage of personal property. This definition excludes indoor storage, warehousing, outdoor storage, bulk storage, and hazardous material storage.

STORAGE, VEHICLE: An indoor or outdoor area for parking or holding of motor vehicles and boats or wheeled equipment for more than seventy-two (72) hours. This definition excludes bulk storage, vehicle sales, vehicle rental, tow truck operation/auto impoundment yard, auto wrecking yard, outdoor storage, and indoor storage.

STORM SEWER and STORM DRAIN: A sewer which carries storm surface water, subsurface water and drainage. See RMC 4-6-100.

STORMWATER FACILITY: A constructed component of a stormwater drainage system, designed or constructed to perform a particular function, or multiple functions. Stormwater facilities include, but are not limited to, pipes, swales, ditches, culverts, street gutters, detention ponds, retention ponds, constructed wetlands, infiltration devices, catch basins, oil/water separators, and biofiltration swales. They may also include low impact development BMPs/facilities. Also referred to as “Drainage Facility.”

STORY: That portion of a building included between the upper surface of any floor and the upper surface of the floor above, except that the topmost story shall be that portion of a building included between the upper surface of the topmost floor and the ceiling or roof above, unless such area meets the definition of an attic. If the finished floor level directly above a usable or unused under-floor space is more than six feet (6') above grade for more than fifty percent (50%) of the total perimeter or is more than twelve feet (12') above grade at any point, such usable or unused under-floor space shall be considered as a story.

STORY, FIRST: The lowest story in a building that qualifies as a story, as defined herein, except that a floor level in a building having only one floor level shall be classified as a first story, provided such floor level is not more than four feet (4') below grade for more than fifty percent (50%) of the total perimeter, or not more than eight feet (8') below grade at any point.

STREAM ALTERATION: The relocation or change in the flow of surface water runoff flowing in a natural or modified channel.

STREAM/LAKE CLASS: The stream and lake waters in the City are defined by class as indicated in RMC 4-3-050.


STREET, ARTERIAL: Street intended for higher traffic volume and speed and classified as a principal or minor arterial on the City of Renton Arterial Street Plan.


1. A street providing access with higher traffic volumes than a typical residential, commercial, or industrial access street. Collector streets are designated by the Public Works Department.

2. A street classified as a collector street on the City of Renton Arterial Street Plan.

STREET, COMMERCIAL ACCESS: A non-arterial street providing access to commercial land uses.

STREET FRONTAGE: The portion of a lot or structure abutting a public or private right-of-way. Structures adjacent yet not adjoining a right-of-way shall be considered abutting if located within twenty feet (20').

STREET FURNITURE: Objects, such as outdoor seating, kiosks, bus shelters, tree grates, trash receptacles, and fountains that have the potential for enlivening and giving variety to streets, sidewalks, plazas, and other outdoor spaces open to, and used by, the public.

STREET GRID PATTERN, MODIFIED: A street system based upon a traditional grid pattern; however, offset intersections, loop roads, as well as angled or curved road segments may also be utilized on a limited basis. The block pattern is characterized by regular (i.e., rectangular or trapezoidal) blocks.

STREET GRID PATTERN, TRADITIONAL: A system of platting, or of street design, that features parallel and perpendicular streets and intersections of streets at right angles that form short blocks.

STREET, INDUSTRIAL ACCESS: A non-arterial street providing access to industrial land uses.

STREET, PEDESTRIAN-ORIENTED: An area with streets and sidewalks specifically designated as such and intended for use by people walking; with special design and spatial treatment of building frontages; built at human scale; with uses of interest to and functional for people on foot; and designed to hold interest for pedestrians by encouraging walking, browsing, and taking in the scene, as designated via Master Plans or similar documents approved by the City.

STREET, RESIDENTIAL ACCESS: A non-arterial street providing access to residential land uses, and not designated as a collector street by the Public Works Department.

STRUCTURE: That which is built or constructed, an edifice or building of any kind, or any piece of work artificially built up or composed of parts joined together in some definite manner.

STRUCTURE: (This definition is for flood hazard regulations in RMC 4-3-050 use only.) A walled and roofed building, including a gas or liquid storage tank, that is principally above ground, as well as a manufactured home.

STRUCTURE: (This definition for RMC 4-3-090, Shoreline Master Program Regulations, use only.) A permanent or temporary edifice or building, or any piece of work artificially built or composed of parts joined together in some definite manner, whether installed on, above, or below the surface of the ground or water, except for vessels.

SUBDIVISION: The division or redivision of land into lots, tracts, parcels, sites or divisions for the purpose of sale, lease, or transfer of ownership. See also PLAT and PLAT, SHORT.

SUBDIVISION: (This definition for RMC 4-3-090, Shoreline Master Program Regulations, use only.) A parcel of land divided into two (2) or more parcels.

SUBDIVISION, PHASED: A subdivision which is, or is intended to be, recorded in increments over a period of time.

SUBDIVISION, UNIT LOT: A division of land (parent site), for the purpose of sale, lease, or transfer of ownership, underlying existing or proposed attached townhouse dwelling units that creates a unit lot for each dwelling, for which one or more boundaries of the individual unit lots coincide with the walls of the townhouse structure which separate individual attached townhouse dwelling units.

SUBJECT PROPERTY: The tract of land which is the subject of the permit and/or approval action.

SUBSTANTIAL DAMAGE: Damage of any origin sustained by a structure whereby the cost of restoring the structure to its before damaged condition would equal or exceed fifty percent (50%) of the market value of the structure before the damage occurred.

SUBSTANTIAL DEVELOPMENT: Any development of which the total cost or fair market value exceeds five thousand dollars ($5,000.00) or any development which materially interferes with the normal public use of the water or shoreline of the State. Exemptions in RCW 90.58.030(3)(e) and in RMC 4-9-190C are not considered substantial developments.

SUBSTANTIAL DEVELOPMENT PERMIT: The shoreline management substantial development permit provided for in Section 14 of the Shoreline Management Act of 1971 (RCW 90.58.140).

SUBSTANTIAL EXISTING IMPROVEMENTS: Physical improvements, such as residential and/or commercial structures and their accessory structures, that have a reasonable remaining economic life as indicated by their assessed valuation.

SUBSTANTIAL IMPROVEMENT: Any reconstruction, rehabilitation, addition or other improvement of a structure, the cost of which equals or exceeds fifty percent (50%) of the market value of the structure before the “start of construction” of the improvement. This term includes structures which have incurred “substantial damage,” regardless of the actual repair work performed. The term does not, however, include either:

1. Any project for improvement of a structure to correct previously identified existing violations of state or local health, sanitary, or safety code specifications that have been identified by the local code enforcement official and that are the minimum necessary to assure safe living conditions; or

2. Any alteration of a “historic structure”; provided, that the alteration will not preclude the structure’s continued designation as a “historic structure.”

SUBTENANT: A person in possession of rental unit through the tenant with the knowledge and consent, express or implied, of the owner.

SURFACE WATER DESIGN MANUAL: A manual, as it exists or may be amended, adopted by reference by the City of Renton, which provides stormwater permit implementation and management guidance consistent with the current version of the King County Surface Water Design Manual.

SURVEY STANDARDS: City of Renton Survey Standards as adopted by the Planning/Building/ Public Works Department.

(Ord. 2820, 1-14-1974; Ord. 3366, 10-15-1979; Ord. 3719, 4-11-1980; Ord. 4071, 6-1-1987; Ord. 4172, 9-12-1988; Ord. 4346, 3-9-1992; Ord. 4367, 9-14-1992; Ord. 4517, 5-8-1995; Ord. 4521, 6-5-1995; Ord. 4522, 6-5-1995; Ord. 4577, 1-22-1996; Ord. 4636, 9-23-1996; Ord. 4691, 1-6-1997; Ord. 4716, 4-13-1998; Ord. 4720, 5-4-1998; Ord. 4724, 5-11-1998; Ord. 4828, 1-24-2000; Ord. 4832, 3-6-2000; Ord. 4835, 3-27-2000; Ord. 4848, 6-26-2000; Ord. 4851, 8-7-2000; Ord. 4917, 9-17-2001; Amd. Ord. 4963, 5-13-2002; Ord. 5062, 1-26-2004; Ord. 5100, 11-1-2004; Ord. 5124, 2-7-2005; Ord. 5137, 4-25-2005; Ord. 5355, 2-25-2008; Ord. 5356, 2-25-2008; Ord. 5450, 3-2-2009; Ord. 5496, 10-5-2009; Ord. 5526, 2-1-2010; Ord. 5578, 11-15-2010; Ord. 5633, 10-24-2011; Ord. 5639, 12-12-2011; Ord. 5676, 12-3-2012; Ord. 5727, 10-20-2014; Ord. 5757, 6-1-2015; Ord. 5759, 6-22-2015; Ord. 5818, 10-17-2016; Ord. 5828, 12-12-2016; Ord. 5839, 6-12-2017; Ord. 5841, 6-12-2017; Ord. 5868, 12-11-2017; Ord. 5899, 11-19-2018; Ord. 5910, 12-10-2018; Ord. 5953, 11-18-2019; Ord. 5954, 11-18-2019; Ord. 5963, 3-2-2020; Ord. 5976, 8-3-2020; Ord. 5977, 8-10-2020; Ord. 5996, 12-14-2020; Ord. 5999, 12-14-2020; Ord. 6019, 6-14-2021; Ord. 6026, 9-20-2021; Ord. 6068, 6-13-2022; Ord. 6070, 6-13-2022; Ord. 6095, 11-28-2022; Ord. 6100, 12-5-2022)