Division III. Zoning Districts

Chapter 20.50
LAND USE ZONES

Sections:

20.50.010    General intent of zones.

20.50.020    RN Neighborhood Residential.

20.50.030    RM Multi-Family Residential.

20.50.040    CC Central Commercial District.

20.50.050    CH Highway Commercial.

20.50.060    IL/C Light Industrial/Commercial.

20.50.070    IH Heavy Industrial.

20.50.080    PR Public Reserve.

20.50.090    AD Airport Development District.

20.50.100    AA Airport Approach – Overlay Zone.

20.50.110    UPC Urban Planned Communities.

20.50.120    Applicability.

20.50.130    Application.

20.50.140    Uses permitted.

20.50.150    Development agreement.

20.50.160    Urban planned community application and review/approval process.

20.50.170    Urban planned community modifications.

20.50.010 General intent of zones.

The zoning districts established and described in this chapter are intended to implement the Land Use Element and Housing Element policies of the Walla Walla Urban Area Comprehensive Plan consistent with the Washington Growth Management Act by establishing minimum site dimensional and design criteria to assure land use compatibility and promote public health, safety, and welfare. (Ord. 2018-53 § 12(part), 2018: Ord. 2012-09 § 24, 2012: Ord. 2008-06 § 70, 2008: Ord. 2000-6 § 2(part), 2000: Ord. 95-5 § 1(part), 1995).

20.50.020 RN Neighborhood Residential.

The Neighborhood Residential Zone is intended to provide for a variety of housing types such as single-family residential up to fourplexes, townhomes, cottage housing, and tiny homes.

A. Level of Uses. The uses allowed by Level I, II, III, or IV procedures in this zone are designated by a 1, 2, 3, or 4 respectively on the Tables of Permitted Land Uses, Chapter 20.100.

B. The Neighborhood Residential Zone has a minimum net density requirement of four dwelling units per acre.

C. Minimum Yard Requirements.

1. Front yard: twenty feet. Corner lots have two front yards: primary and secondary. The primary front yard (generally off-street parking side) shall be full depth; the secondary front yard shall be one-half the required front yard depth. Front yard setback for garage or carport must be twenty feet; front yard setback for house may be reduced to fifteen feet.

2. Side yard: five feet; attached housing with a shared wall/property line can be zero feet except for end units that shall be five feet.

3. Rear yard: twenty feet. Rear yards for detached accessory structures: see Chapter 20.118. Corner lots are not considered to have rear yards.

4. For exceptions to these minimum standards, see Section 20.102.020.

D. Lot Coverage. Buildings shall occupy a maximum of fifty percent of the lot.

E. Building Height. No building shall exceed thirty-five feet.

F. Off-Street Parking. See Chapter 20.127 for residential parking requirements. (Ord. 2021-46 § 10, 2021; Ord. 2020-51 § 10, 2020; Ord. 2018-53 § 12(part), 2018).

20.50.030 RM Multi-Family Residential.

The Multi-Family Residential Zone is intended to accommodate a compatible mixture of multifamily residential uses. Such areas generally serve as transition or buffer zones between major arterials or more intensively developed commercial areas and residential districts.

A. Level of Use. The uses allowed by Level I, II or III procedures in this zone are designated by a 1, 2 or 3 respectively on the Tables of Permitted Land Uses, Chapter 20.100.

B. The Multi-Family Residential Zone shall have a minimum density of twenty dwelling units per acre and maximum density of seventy-five dwelling units per acre.

C. Minimum Yard Requirements.

1. Front yard: fifteen feet. Corner lots have two front yards: primary and secondary. The primary front yard (generally off-street parking side) shall be full depth; the secondary front yard shall be one-half the required front yard depth.

2. Side yard: five feet.

3. Rear yard: ten feet. Corner lots are not considered to have rear yards.

4. For exceptions to these minimum standards, see Section 20.102.020.

D. Lot Coverage. Buildings shall occupy a maximum of sixty-five percent of the lot.

E. Building Height. No building shall exceed sixty feet.

F. Off-Street Parking. Specific standards depend on use. See Chapter 20.126, Off-Street Parking and Loading Standards, and Chapter 20.127, Table of Off-Street Parking Standards. (Ord. 2020-51 § 10, 2020; Ord. 2018-53 § 12(part), 2018: Ord. 2012-09 § 28, 2012. Formerly 20.50.065).

20.50.040 CC Central Commercial District.

The Central Commercial Zone is intended to accommodate a wide variety of commercial activity (particularly those that are pedestrian oriented) together with compatible residential life styles and uses of upper story levels which will result in the most intensive and attractive use of the city’s Central Business District.

A. Level of Use. The uses allowed by Level I, II or III procedures in this zone are designated by a “1,” “2” or “3” respectively on the Tables of Permitted Land Uses, Chapter 20.100.

B. Minimum Lot Dimensions.

1. Area: no restrictions.

2. Width: no restrictions.

3. Depth: no restrictions.

C. Minimum Yard Requirements.

1. Infill commercial and mixed use development in the area designated as “Downtown” shall extend to the above-ground building line (which shall be the edge of the public right-of-way line) along any street frontage. Parking, if any, must be provided at the rear of the property.

2. No setbacks in the Central Commercial Zone: no restrictions.

D. Lot Coverage. Buildings may occupy up to one hundred percent.

E. Building Height. No restrictions.

F. Off-Street Parking. A portion of the Central Commercial Zone is exempt from off-street parking requirements as provided in Section 20.126.050(C), Downtown Area Exempt. Other standards depend on use. See Chapter 20.126, Off-Street Parking and Loading Standards, and Chapter 20.127, Table of Off-Street Parking Standards. (Ord. 2020-51 § 10, 2020; Ord. 2018-53 § 12(part), 2018: Ord. 2012-36 § 2, 2012: Ord. 2012-09 § 29, 2012. Formerly 20.50.070).

20.50.050 CH Highway Commercial.

The Highway Commercial Zone is intended to accommodate a wide range of commercial activities which largely depend upon proximity to major streets and arterials for trade and transportation. The types of uses permissible in this zone are generally similar to the types permissible in the Central Commercial Zone, except that additional automobile-oriented businesses and land extensive commercial activities such as automobile sales lots, greenhouses and nurseries, lumber yards, etc., are permissible.

A. Level of Uses. The uses allowed by Level I, II or III procedures in this zone are designated by a

“1”, “2” or “3” respectively on the Tables of Permitted Land Uses, Chapter 20.100.

B. A residential use proposed in the Highway Commercial Zone shall have a minimum density of twenty dwelling units per acre and maximum density of seventy-five dwelling units per acre.

C. Minimum Lot Dimensions.

1. Area: no restrictions.

2. Width: no restrictions.

3. Depth: no restrictions.

D. Minimum Yard Requirements.

1. Front: ten feet.

2. Side: no restrictions, except where abutting residential districts, then ten feet.

3. Rear: no restrictions, except where abutting residential districts, then twenty feet. Corner lots are not considered to have rear yards.

E. Lot Coverage. Buildings may not exceed eighty percent lot coverage.

F. Building Height. No building may exceed sixty feet, except when abutting the RN zone, then maximum building height is thirty-five feet. For every one additional foot of setback, an additional foot of height may be granted.

G. Off-Street Parking. Specific standards depend on use. See Chapters 20.126, Off-Street Parking and Loading Standards, and 20.127, Table of Off-Street Parking Standards. If possible, parking shall be located to the side and rear of the structure. (Ord. 2020-51 § 10, 2020; Ord. 2018-53 § 12(part), 2018: Ord. 2017-45 § 63, 2017: Ord. 2012-09 § 30, 2012. Formerly 20.50.075).

20.50.060 IL/C Light Industrial/Commercial.

The Light Industrial/Commercial Zone is intended to: (A) provide for the development of areas near designated truck routes, highways and railroads in which certain types of industrial activities, which do not generate noise levels, light, or odor of fumes that would constitute a nuisance or hazard and which do not create exceptional demands upon public facilities and services, may be located; (B) permit in the same areas such commercial uses as may be compatible with the light industrial activities; and (C) protect such areas from other uses which may interfere with the stated purposes and efficient functioning of those purposes.

A. Level of Uses. The uses allowed by Level I, II or III procedures in this zone are designated by a 1, 2 or 3 respectively on the Tables of Permitted Land Uses, Chapter 20.100.

B. Minimum Lot Dimensions.

1. Area: no restrictions.

2. Width: no restrictions.

3. Depth: no restrictions.

C. Minimum Yard Requirements.

1. Front: no restrictions.

2. Side: no restrictions, except where abutting a residential district, then ten feet.

3. Rear: no restrictions, except where abutting a residential district, then twenty feet.

4. For exceptions to these minimum standards, see Section 20.102.020.

D. Lot Coverage. Up to one hundred percent lot coverage is allowed, provided all other development standards are met, such as off-street parking, landscaping, etc.

E. Building Height. No building may exceed fifty feet, except when abutting the RN zone, then maximum building height is thirty-five feet.

F. Off-Street Parking. Specific standards depend on use. See Chapter 20.126, Off-Street Parking and Loading Standards, and Chapter 20.127, Table of Off-Street Parking Standards. (Ord. 2020-51 § 10, 2020; Ord. 2018-53 § 12(part), 2018: Ord. 2012-09 § 31, 2012. Formerly 20.50.080).

20.50.070 IH Heavy Industrial.

The Heavy Industrial Zone is intended primarily to provide adequate land area for the location of a broad range of industrial activities which may, by their nature, create a greater degree of hazard or annoyance than would be permitted in any other zoning district. Certain uses such as residential and retail businesses are not permitted in this zone in order to promote a viable heavy industrial area which will not be injurious to nor hindered by incompatible uses.

A. Level of Uses. The uses allowed by Level I, II or III procedures in this zone are designated by a 1, 2 or 3 respectively on the Tables of Permitted Land Uses, Chapter 20.100.

B. Minimum Lot Dimensions.

1. Area: no restrictions.

2. Width: no restrictions.

3. Depth: no restrictions.

C. Minimum Yard Requirements.

1. Front: no restrictions.

2. Side: no restrictions, except where abutting a residential district, then ten feet.

3. Rear: no restrictions, except when abutting a residential district, then twenty feet.

4. For exceptions to these minimum standards, see Section 20.102.020.

D. Lot Coverage. Up to one hundred percent lot coverage is allowed, provided all other development standards are met, such as off-street parking, landscaping, etc.

E. Building Height. No building shall exceed eighty feet, except when abutting the RN zone, then maximum building height is thirty-five feet.

F. Off-Street Parking. Specific standards depend on use. See Chapter 20.126, Off-Street Parking and Loading Standards, and Chapter 20.127, Table of Off-Street Parking Standards. (Ord. 2020-51 § 10, 2020; Ord. 2018-53 § 12(part), 2018: Ord. 2012-09 § 32, 2012. Formerly 20.50.085).

20.50.080 PR Public Reserve.

The Public Reserve Zone is intended to: (A) protect and preserve certain areas of land devoted to existing and future use for civic, cultural, educational and similar facilities; (B) provide for the social needs of the community as those needs relate to public services, open space and institutions, whether publicly or privately sponsored; (C) enhance the identity and image of the community as a desirable place for human growth and development; (D) provide opportunities and facilities for the various activities and needs of a diverse and dynamic population; and (E) provide and protect parks, open space and other natural, physical assets of the community to improve the aesthetic and functional features of the community.

A. Level of Uses. The uses allowed by Level I, II or III procedures in this zone are designated by a 1, 2 or 3 respectively on the Tables of Permitted Land Uses, Chapter 20.100.

B. Minimum Lot Dimensions. Due to the wide range of land uses, structure types, and lot sizes inherent in the generalized category of Public Reserve, lot dimensions are best determined through the site plan review process. When a proposed use is permitted in another zone with specified lot dimensions, the requirements of that zone generally shall apply in the Public Reserve zone. In any case, lot dimensions shall be sufficient to accommodate parking, vehicle maneuvering areas, landscaping, open space, and other development standards required by this title for the use as determined by the site plan review process (Chapter 20.46).

C. Minimum Yard Requirements. When a proposed use is permitted in another zone with specified yard requirements, the requirements of that zone generally shall apply in the Public Reserve zone. In any case, yard requirements shall be sufficient to meet fire and other standards as determined by the site plan review process.

D. Lot Coverage. Buildings may not exceed eighty percent lot coverage.

E. Building Height. Building height shall be determined by the site plan review process to be compatible with appropriate use of adjacent properties.

F. Off-Street Parking. Specific standards depend on the use. See Chapter 20.126, Off-Street Parking and Loading Standards, and Chapter 20.127, Table of Off-Street Parking Standards. (Ord. 2020-51 § 10, 2020; Ord. 2018-53 § 12(part), 2018: Ord. 2012-09 § 33, 2012. Formerly 20.50.090).

20.50.090 AD Airport Development District.

The Airport Development District Zone is intended for the development and use of land within the boundaries of the Walla Walla Regional Airport, primarily for aviation and industrial development. Public and quasi-public uses, agricultural development, and commercial activity which functions as a secondary support to aviation and agriculture are also permitted. Review of proposed development is to ensure compatibility with aviation facilities and adjacent properties, and to enhance the potential for future commercial, industrial, public and quasi-public development, and will include input from the management of the Walla Walla Regional Airport. The airport manager will be responsible for application of specific airport development standards and aviation related standards of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

A. Level of Uses. The uses allowed by Level I, II or III procedures in this zone are designated by a 1, 2 or 3 respectively on the Tables of Permitted Land Uses, Chapter 20.100.

B. Minimum Lot Dimensions. Due to the wide range of land uses, structure types, and lot sizes inherent in the generalized category of the Airport Development District Zone, lot dimensions are best determined through the site plan review process. When a proposed use is permitted in another zone with specified lot dimensions, the requirements of that zone generally shall apply in the Airport Development District Zone. In any case, lot dimensions shall be sufficient to accommodate parking, vehicle maneuvering areas, landscaping, open space, and other development standards required by this title for the use as determined by the site plan review process (Chapter 20.46).

C. Minimum Yard Requirements. When a proposed use is permitted in another zone with specified yard requirements, the requirements of that zone generally shall apply in the Airport Development District Zone. In any case, yard requirements shall be sufficient to meet fire and other standards as determined by the site plan review process.

D. Lot Coverage. Specific standards will be determined by the site plan review committee depending on the proposed use.

E. Building Height. All building heights must conform to standards provided by the FAA.

F. Off-Street Parking. Specific standards depend on use. See Chapter 20.126, Off-Street Parking and Loading Standards. (Ord. 2020-51 § 10, 2020; Ord. 2018-53 § 12(part), 2018: Ord. 2012-09 § 34, 2012. Formerly 20.50.095).

20.50.100 AA Airport Approach – Overlay Zone.

The Airport Approach – Overlay Zone is intended to protect certain runway approaches of the Walla Walla City-County Regional Airport from land uses and structures which would tend to impair the full utilization of the runways. It is further the purpose of this overlay zone to protect the health and lives of the public by preventing the undue concentration of population subject to airport hazards. The rules of this overlay zone are imposed in addition to those of the underlying district. Developments must comply with the requirements of both zones, or the more restrictive of the two.

A. Permitted Uses. Permitted uses in the Airport Approach – Overlay Zone include those uses in the underlying zoning district except as specified in subsection B of this section.

B. Prohibited Uses. The following types of development and similar developments are prohibited in the Airport Approach – Overlay Zone:

1. All dwelling units, except a single-family dwelling unit is permitted when used exclusively by security personnel employed by the existing use;

2. Theaters;

3. Churches;

4. Schools;

5. Commercial recreation facilities such as stadiums, coliseums, and amusement parks where heavy concentrations of population assemble;

6. Clubs, lodges;

7. Hospitals, convalescent centers;

8. RV parks, campgrounds;

9. Motels, hotels;

10. Large capacity retail facilities such as supermarkets, department stores or multiple tenant complexes.

C. Building Height. All building heights must conform to standards provided by the Federal Aviation Administration. (Ord. 2012-09 § 35, 2012).

20.50.110 UPC Urban Planned Communities.

The purpose of the Urban Planned Communities (UPC) Zone is to provide greater flexibility and encourage more creative land planning solutions on large parcels of land than would be achieved by traditional lot-by-lot development using the other zoning districts in this code, while at the same time ensuring substantial compliance with the goals and policies of the Comprehensive Plan and permitting more advantageous and efficient use of sites and infrastructure through the location and arrangement of structures, circulation, parking, and open spaces. The purposes of this district also are to provide flexibility to achieve public benefits and to respond to changing community needs. (Ord. 2018-53 § 12(part), 2018: Ord. 2016-49 § 7, 2016: Ord. 2012-09 § 36, 2012. Formerly 20.50.105).

20.50.120 Applicability.

The UPC zone is allowed only on sites of ten acres or more and designated on the Comprehensive Plan land use map as an urban planned community. “Sites,” for purposes of this section, means contiguous land under one ownership or under the control of a single legal entity responsible for submitting an application and carrying out the provisions of a development agreement. (Ord. 2018-53 § 12(part), 2018).

20.50.130 Application.

An application for development of a UPC site shall be on forms prepared by the development services department and a draft development agreement. The information required on the application forms shall take into account that detailed information may not be available at the time of the application and may be developed through the environmental review process. (Ord. 2018-53 § 12(part), 2018).

20.50.140 Uses permitted.

Development on a UPC site may contain any nonindustrial land use contained in this chapter. The primary land uses shall be commercial, residential, and active and passive open space. All uses are subject to standards, limitations and conditions specified in a development agreement. (Ord. 2018-53 § 12(part), 2018).

20.50.150 Development agreement.

The applicant shall submit a draft development agreement under Chapter 36.70B RCW and as provided below:

A. A development plan that includes, at a minimum:

1. A conceptual site plan showing parcel boundaries; location and acreage of active and passive recreational areas; location, acreage and range of densities for residential development; location and range of types of uses of nonresidential development; location and size of critical areas and buffers; perimeter buffers, if any; and motorized and nonmotorized circulation routes, including connections to streets and pedestrian routes servicing and/or abutting the site;

2. A parks and open space plan, including trails. The plan must also include the amount of acreage devoted to parks and to open space and the total length of trails;

3. The expected buildout period;

4. A phasing plan;

5. Conceptual road, sewer, water and stormwater plans;

6. Conceptual grading plan;

7. Minimum and maximum number of residential units allowed. The minimum number of residential units shall not be less than four dwelling units per net acre of land devoted to residential uses;

8. Minimum and maximum amount of nonresidential uses allowed;

9. Provisions for the termination of the development agreement and rezoning of the property if substantial progress has not been achieved within a prescribed time period.

B. Measures to adequately address potential land use conflicts between the urban planned community site and adjacent land uses.

C. Measures to adequately address impacts to public services and facilities.

D. Development standards which may differ from those otherwise imposed under the city of Walla Walla Municipal Code in order to provide flexibility to achieve public benefits and encourage modifications that provide the functional equivalent or adequately achieve the purposes of city standards. Any approved development standards that differ from those in the Walla Walla Municipal Code shall not require any further zoning reclassification, variance from city standards or other city approval apart from that specified in the development agreement. The development standards as approved in the development agreement shall apply to and govern the development and implementation of each area within the site in lieu of any conflicting or different standards or requirements elsewhere in the Walla Walla Municipal Code. Subsequently adopted standards which differ from those in the development agreement shall apply to the urban planned community site only where necessary to address imminent public health and safety hazards or where the development agreement specifies a time period or phase after which certain identified standards may be modified. Building permit applications shall be subject to the building codes in effect when the application was deemed complete. (Ord. 2018-53 § 12(part), 2018).

20.50.160 Urban planned community application and review/approval process.

A. The application process for development of a UPC site shall be as prescribed in Chapter 20.27.

B. The review and approval process for development of a UPC site shall be as prescribed in Chapter 20.27.

C. Additional review criteria shall include:

1. Creative site planning solutions;

2. The provision of substantial active and passive open spaces;

3. An interconnected network of nonmotorized circulation systems.

D. Review and approval of multiple implementing development actions such as subdivision (plat) approval or other specific regulatory permit actions may be processed concurrently with or subsequent to approval of the development agreement. (Ord. 2018-53 § 12(part), 2018).

20.50.170 Urban planned community modifications.

A. Site elements or conditions of approval may be amended or modified at the written request of the applicant or the applicant’s successor in interest designated in writing by the applicant.

B. Minor modifications of the urban planned community may be authorized by the development services director and shall be established in the development agreement.

C. Major modifications require city council approval following a public hearing. A decrease of more than five percent in the minimum amount of total required recreation and open space shall be deemed a major modification. Any decrease in the minimum number of residential dwelling units or increase in the maximum number of residential dwelling units shall be deemed a major modification. Any increase in the maximum amount of nonresidential uses shall be deemed a major modification. The development agreement may specify additional criteria for determining whether proposed modifications are minor or major. (Ord. 2018-53 § 12(part), 2018).