Chapter 20.40


20.40.010    Applicability.

20.40.020    Submission requirements.

20.40.030    Location.

20.40.040    Design requirements.

20.40.050    Compact vehicle parking.

20.40.060    Handicapped parking.

20.40.070    Expansion or change of use.

20.40.080    Joint use.

20.40.090    Exemptions.

20.40.100    Minimum off-street parking requirements.

20.40.010 Applicability.

A.    All sites hereafter used to provide parking for five or more vehicles shall be developed and maintained in accordance with the requirements of this chapter.

B.    Off-street parking shall be provided in conformance with this chapter whenever a building is erected, relocated, expanded, the net floor area is increased, or a building’s or site’s use is changed, except as otherwise provided for in Sections 20.40.070 and 20.40.090.

C.    Changes in the configuration or circulation patterns of parking lots must be approved by the planning director.

D.    No building permit or business license shall be issued until the requirements of this chapter have been met or provided for to the satisfaction of city.

E.    Required parking facilities shall not be eliminated or reduced unless there is a change in use or other factors that would require fewer parking stalls, or alternative facilities are provided in conformance with this chapter. (Amended during 9/92 Supplement; Ord. 1311-191 § 1 (part), 1991; Ord. 1286 § 2 (part), 1990)

20.40.020 Submission requirements.

The proponent of a proposed parking lot shall present the planning department with a plot plan of the subject property and adjoining streets which depicts, as appropriate, the parking lot configuration, the number and dimension of parking stalls, internal circulation patterns, aisle widths, turning radiuses, drainage, lighting, fencing, landscaping, pedestrian walkways, curbcuts, grades, and other related features and appurtenances. (Ord. 1286 § 2 (part), 1990)

20.40.030 Location.

Off-street parking facilities shall be located as hereinafter /specified. Where a distance is indicated, such distance shall be the maximum walking distance measured from the nearest point of the parking facility to the nearest point of the building that such facility is required to serve.

A.    Single-family or two-family dwelling: on the same parcel as the use being served;

B.    Multiple-family dwelling: within two hundred feet;

C.    Nonresidential uses in residential districts: within one hundred fifty feet;

D.    Hospital, convalescent or nursing home: within three hundred feet;

E.    Retail: within six hundred fifty feet;

F.    Other uses: within eight hundred feet. (Ord. 1286 § 2 (part), 1990)

20.40.040 Design requirements.

A.    Access.

1.    Parking lot entrances and exits shall be at least forty feet from an intersection unless the director of public works determines that the driveway can be placed closer to an intersection without jeopardizing public safety. The director of public works may require the property owner to alter ingress and egress as necessary to protect public safety or to maintain traffic flow.

2.    Single lane entrances shall be twelve feet wide, exits shall be ten to twelve feet wide, and combined entrances and exits shall be twenty-four to twenty-six feet wide, unless the director of public works determines that the site can be safely served, considering traffic volumes and the particular site circumstances, with driveways of a greater or lesser dimension.

3.    Where practical, and in the public interest, the director of public works may require adjoining commercial property owners to provide joint access easements to accommodate combined driveways, provided that such access does not pose an undue hardship upon the property owners.

4.    All maneuvering areas, ramps, and accesses shall be provided on the property containing the parking area, with the exception that the director of public works may approve the use of alleys as maneuvering areas.

5.    Maneuvering areas for nonresidential uses shall be provided such that no vehicle is obliged to back into or out of a parking facility from an arterial street as defined by city ordinance.

B.    Surfacing and Drainage. Parking lots and maneuvering areas shall have all weather, dust-free surfaces unless otherwise approved by the director of public works. Gravel or crushed rock surfaces may be approved by the director of public works consistent with Section 20.40.060 if, considering the proposed lot’s projected frequency and duration of use, vehicle turnover, location, and other relevant factors, he determines that it would be in the public interest. All parking areas shall provide storm drainage facilities as approved by the director of public works.

C.    Markings and Signage. Parking stalls, direction of travel, crosswalks, and entrances and exits shall be clearly identified.

D.    Parking Stall Size. Each off-street parking stall shall be of at least the following minimum size:

Standard parallel stall—160 square feet, 8.5 feet in width.

Standard angled stall—153 square feet, 8 feet in width.

Compact stall—120 square feet, 7.5 feet in width.

Handicapped stall—see Section 20.40.060.

E.    Landscaping and Screening.

1.    Any boundary of a parking or vehicle sales lot adjoining a residential district shall be screened with a dense hedge, a solid fence, or landscaped earth berm measuring at least five feet in height as approved by the planning department. Vegetative screening shall be at least three feet in height at the time of planting unless approved by the planning department.

2.    Wherever practical, as determined by the planning department, a landscaped strip of at least three feet in width or a decorative wall or fence forty-two inches or less in height shall be provided along street frontages. Shrubs and bushes shall be maintained at a height of forty-two inches or less and tree branches shall be pruned below the six-foot level within thirty-five feet of an intersection.

3.    The ends of aisles, islands, and corner remnants shall be landscaped wherever practical in parking lots with twenty or more spaces.

F.    Barriers. Wherever the front or rear of a parked vehicle would abut a public right-of-way, a barrier, approved by the director of public works, shall be erected to prevent encroachment upon the right-of-way. Wheel stops may be required to protect landscaped areas, walkways, or adjoining property.

G.    Walkways. Any internal walkway shall have an unobstructed width of at least four feet and shall be elevated six inches above the lot surface.

H.    Lighting. Any parking lot lighting shall be designed and directed to prevent glare and illumination from affecting adjoining property and motorists.

I.    Maintenance. It shall be the responsibility of the owner to maintain the parking area including removal of debris, snow and ice, and weeds; removal and replacement of dead trees and shrubs; trimming of hedges and shrubs; and repair, maintenance or replacement of drainage control facilities, traffic control devices, signs, lights, walls, fences, and surface materials. (Ord. 1286 § 2 (part), 1990)

20.40.050 Compact vehicle parking.

A.    A property owner may designate up to forty percent of the required parking stalls for compact vehicles.

B.    Compact stalls shall be clearly identified with pavement markings. (Ord. 1286 § 2 (part), 1990)

20.40.060 Handicapped parking.

The location, number, size, surfacing, and identification of handicapped parking stalls shall be in conformance with the Washington State Standards for Barrier-Free Design, as now or hereafter amended. (Ord. 1286 § 2 (part), 1990)

20.40.070 Expansion or change of use.

Whenever a building’s net floor area (see Section 20.40.100(B)) is increased, the number of living units is increased, or whenever the use of a building or parcel is changed such that the parking requirements would be increased by more than twenty percent, additional off-street parking shall be provided for the expansion or new use in compliance with the requirements of this chapter, except as otherwise provided for in Section 20.40.090. Parking deficiencies in existence at the time of adoption of this chapter shall be allowed to continue. (Ord. 1286 § 2 (part), 1990)

20.40.080 Joint use.

A.    The planning department may authorize joint use of parking facilities under the following conditions:

1.    Safe, convenient pedestrian access is available between the lot(s) and the businesses; and

2.    The proximity of the businesses to the lot(s) complies with Section 20.40.030.

B.    Spaces required:

1.    Nonoverlapping hours of operation: the property owners shall provide parking stalls equal to the greater of the applicable individual parking requirements.

2.    Overlapping hours of operation: the property owners shall provide parking equal to the sum of the individual parking requirements with the provision that the parking requirements may be reduced by ten percent for two users, fifteen percent for three users, and twenty percent for four or more users if the following conditions are met:

a.    The parking users share a single lot or the lots share a property line;

b.    The average finished grades of the lots do not differ by more than four feet unless a safe, convenient, and visible pedestrian connection can be provided; and

c.    A vehicular connection between the lots exists.

3.    Special exception: the hearing examiner may further reduce the amount of required parking for joint parking users with overlapping hours of operation by special exception if it can be demonstrated that there is no material conflict in the hours or days of peak parking usage. The hearing examiner may require a written agreement and performance bond stipulating that an area be held in reserve to accommodate future parking in the event that actual parking demand exceeds the lot’s capacity. The determination of the need to develop additional parking under such an agreement shall rest with the director of planning.

C.    Assignment of Spaces. Where joint use parking is allowed, assignment of parking spaces to individual buildings or uses is prohibited.

D.    Binding Agreement. A lease, deed, contract, covenant, easement, or other binding agreement, approved by the city attorney, establishing joint use of a parking lot shall be submitted to the planning department and recorded with the county auditor at the applicant’s expense.

E.    Termination of Joint Use. In the event that a joint use parking agreement is terminated, those businesses or uses in need of parking shall have one hundred twenty days to secure on-site parking or other joint use parking facilities in conformance with this chapter. If sufficient parking is not provided, the use, or that portion of the use out of compliance with this chapter, shall be terminated upon the expiration of the one-hundred-twenty-day period. (Ord. 1131-191 § 1 (part), 1991; Ord. 1286 § 2 (part), 1990)

20.40.090 Exemptions.

A.    Central Business District. Uses occupying structures located on the south side of Railroad Avenue between First and Fifth streets, the north side of Cota Street between First and Third streets and between Fourth and Fifth streets, the south side of Cota Street between First and Third streets and along Second, Third, and Fourth streets and the eastern side of Fifth Street between Railroad Avenue and Cota Street are hereby exempted from the parking requirements related to a change of use contained in Section 20.40.070. The owners of these properties shall, upon a change of use or an expansion of net floor area, provide off-street parking within nine hundred feet of their property boundary for the use’s employees and the owners at the rate of one parking space per employee/owner, in addition to any other parking requirements, unless it can be clearly demonstrated to the hearing examiner that fewer parking spaces would adequately serve the use. The property or business owner shall provide the planning department with a deed, lease, or rental agreement indicating that the required parking spaces have been provided.

B.    The hearing examiner may waive or alter the parking requirements contained in this chapter, consistent with the public interest and the provisions of Chapter 20.50, wherever strict compliance is physically impossible or clearly impractical, and it is demonstrated that the use’s parking needs will be adequately served.

C.    The hearing examiner may also reduce parking requirements if evidence is presented that through the use of car pooling, public transportation, or other means that fewer parking spaces are needed to serve the use.

D.    The hearing examiner may reduce the parking requirements for joint use parking lots consistent with the provisions of Section 20.40.080(B)(3). (Ord. 1286 § 2 (part), 1990)

20.40.100 Minimum off-street parking requirements.

The required off-street parking spaces for various uses are listed below. Uses which are not specifically listed shall be required to provide the amount of parking corresponding to the most similar listed use as determined by the planning department.

A.    When determining the number of required parking spaces for a particular use or building results in a fractional space, any fraction less than one-half shall be disregarded and any fraction of one-half or more shall be counted as one space.

B.    For purposes of calculating the required parking spaces, the square footage of a building shall be the net floor area excluding restrooms, closets, hallways, maintenance and cleaning supply rooms, and equipment and machinery rooms not used directly in the manufacture, production, storage, or sale of goods or provision of services.

C.    For purposes of determining parking requirements for multilevel structures, the following formula shall be used to compute net floor area:

Main floor




Additional stories


D.    In a stadium, auditorium, church, or other place of assembly, each twenty inches of bench seating shall be counted as one seat for the purpose of determining the parking requirements.

E.    When a parking requirement is stated in terms of employees, it means the maximum number of employees who will be at the site at one time either on a single shift or an overlap of shifts.

F.    The parking requirement for mixed uses shall be the sum of the individual requirements based upon the amount of square footage devoted to each use (see Table 20.40.100).

Table 20.40.100


Minimum Spaces Required

Auditorium, Assembly room, Theater, Community center

1 per 4 fixed seats or 1 per 4 people at maximum allowable occupancy of the assembly area where there are no fixed seats.

Bowling alley

5 per alley plus 1 per employee


1 per 4 fixed seats in primary assembly area or 1 per 4 people at maximum allowable occupancy of the assembly area

Clubs, Lodges

1 per 5 members or 1 per 200 square feet, whichever is greater

Dance hall, Skating rink

1 per 25 square feet of dance or skating area plus 1 per 200 square feet devoted to dining and drinking

Financial institution

1 per 250 square feet

Funeral home

1 per 4 fixed seats in assembly area or 1 per 4 people at maximum allowable occupancy of the assembly area

Gas station/Repair garage

1 per bay plus 1 per employee plus 1 per pump plus 22 lineal feet of vehicle waiting space per pump

Health club

1 per 200 square feet



Inpatient treatment facility

1 per 3 beds plus 1 per employee

Outpatient surgical facility

1 per 2 beds plus 1 per employee

Hotel, Motel:

1 per unit

Associated lounge/restaurant

1 per 150 square feet

Banquet/meeting room

1 per 3 people at maximum occupancy




1 per 250 square feet


1 per washing machine


1 per 250 square feet open to public plus 1 per employee


.75 per employee plus 1 per company vehicle based on site

Mini storage

1 per 15 units

Nursing/Convalescent home

1 per 5 beds plus 1 per employee



General office

1 per 300 square feet

Offices without on-site customer services

1 per 700 square feet or 2 per 3 employees, whichever is greater


1 per 200 square feet

Preschool, Nursery school, Day care

1 per teacher/caregiver plus 1 per 7 children

Personal services:


With fixed stations

1.5 per station

Without fixed stations

1 per 300 square feet




2 per unit

Triplex and larger

2 per first unit plus 1.5 per each additional two-bedroom unit or 1.75 for each additional three-bedroom unit

Senior housing—detached

1 per unit

Senior housing—multi-unit

1 per 3 units


1 per room



Sit-down only

1 per 3 fixed seats or 1 per 100 square feet

Sit-down plus drive-in

1 per 70 square feet

Drive-in only

1 per 30 square feet


1 per 400 square feet plus 1 per 2 employees



General retail

1 per 300 square feet

Motor vehicles, machinery, agricultural or industrial equipment

1 per 1,000 square feet plus 1 per 2 employees

Plumbing, building or heating supplies

1 per 500 square feet

Furniture, major appliances, carpet

1 per 600 square feet of display area

Clothing, shoes

1 per 400 square feet

Shopping center

1 per 250 square feet

Grocery store

1 per 300 square feet of display area plus 1 per employee

Convenience grocery

1 per 100 square feet



Elementary and junior high school

1 per employee plus 1.5 per classroom

High school

1 per employee plus 1 per 5 nonbussed students


1 per employee plus 2 per 3 students during the peak attendance period


1 per 100 square feet


1 per 4,000 square feet plus 1 per employee

(Ord. 1286 § 2 (part), 1990)