Chapter 16.08


16.08.010    Title of chapter.

16.08.020    Authority to act.

16.08.030    Administration and enforcement.

16.08.040    Definitions.

16.08.050    Division prohibited.

16.08.060    Map validity – Approvals required.

16.08.070    Design regulations.

16.08.080    Application – Prerequisites.

16.08.090    Short plat – Findings.

16.08.095    Final short plat – General requirements.

16.08.100    Short plat – Filing.

16.08.105    Preliminary short plat – Approval time.

16.08.110    Violation – Procedure.

16.08.010 Title of chapter.

The ordinance codified in this chapter shall be known as the West Richland short subdivision ordinance and may be cited as such. [Ord. 17-18 § 1, 2018; Ord. 16-10 § 2, 2010; Ord. 14-00 § 1, 2000; Ord. 182 § 1, 1974].

16.08.020 Authority to act.

The community development director is authorized to administratively approve, approve with conditions or deny a proposed short subdivision of land into eight or fewer lots, tracts, or parcels under the criteria set forth in this chapter and as consistent with this title, and pursuant to RCW 58.17.060. [Ord. 17-18 § 1, 2018; Ord. 16-10 § 2, 2010].

16.08.030 Administration and enforcement.

A. The subdivision of all land in the city into individual lots or tracts shall be subject to the provisions of this title, as applicable.

B. All contiguous parcels under unified control or ownership shall be included within a single short subdivision application, except adjacent platted or short platted lots that are less than twice the minimum lot size of the applicable zoning district or lots that are fully developed. Unified control or ownership shall include but not be limited to business entities that have one or more common members or any ownership arrangement where one individual or business entity stands to profit from the subdivision of each of the contiguous parcels. Multiple applications shall not be utilized as a substitute for a single comprehensive subdivision in accordance with city standards.

C. Land in short subdivisions may not be further divided in any manner within a five-year period without the filing of a final plat, except that when the short subdivision contains fewer than four parcels, nothing in this section shall prevent the owner who filed the short plat from filing an alteration within the five-year period to create up to a total of four lots within the original short plat boundaries, or as allowed by the underlying zoning district. [Ord. 17-18 § 1, 2018; Ord. 16-10 § 2, 2010].

16.08.040 Definitions.

For the purposes of this chapter, the following words have the meanings set out in this section:

“Lot” is a fractional part of an area subdivided, having fixed boundaries and being of sufficient area and dimensions to meet minimum zoning requirements, and includes tract and parcel.

“Short plat” is a map or pictorial representation of a short subdivision.

“Short subdivision” is the division of an area into eight or fewer lots, tracts or parcels. [Ord. 17-18 § 1, 2018; Ord. 16-10 § 2, 2010; Ord. 14-00 § 1, 2000; Ord. 182 § 3, 1974. Formerly 16.08.020].

16.08.050 Division prohibited.

Except as provided in WRMC 16.02.030, it is unlawful to divide land within the city of West Richland into eight or fewer lots, except in accordance with the provisions of this chapter or Chapter 16.06 WRMC, or except for purposes of locating and installing utilities and related facilities when requested by a utility purveyor previously granted franchise rights by the city, and if approved by the city council. [Ord. 17-18 § 1, 2018; Ord. 16-10 § 2, 2010; Ord. 14-00 § 1, 2000; Ord. 27-95 § 1, 1995; Ord. 9-92 § 4, 1992. Formerly 16.08.030].

16.08.060 Map validity – Approvals required.

The short subdivision map shall require approval of the public works director, community development director, and mayor, indicated by their signatures thereon, and dated, to be valid. [Ord. 17-18 § 1, 2018; Ord. 16-10 § 2, 2010; Ord. 14-00 § 1, 2000; Ord. 182 § 5(2), 1974. Formerly 16.08.040].

16.08.070 Design regulations.

All short subdivisions shall be subject to all provisions of the West Richland Municipal Code and all city standards.

A. Each lot resulting from the subdivision of an area shall conform to zoning regulations.

B. Each lot within each subdivision shall adjoin a public street; provided, that upon approval of the community development director lots may have access to a public street by an access corridor in the same ownership as the lots served, or by recorded easement over an access corridor in other ownership, whichever, in the discretion of the community development director, is the best method of access based on existing adjacent development and potential development in as yet undeveloped adjacent properties, and on existing streets and potential future streets. The public street to which each subdivision shall have access must be improved to city standards and accepted by the city as a public street prior to approval of the subdivision; provided, however, that in the event the public street is to be improved by the city either through an LID or otherwise, this provision shall not apply after the contract for the street improvements has been awarded.

C. If corridor access is permitted, the minimum corridor width shall be 20 feet. Greater width may be required at the discretion of the community development director, but not more than 30 feet.

D. Permitted maximum length of an access corridor shall be 300 feet, except at the discretion of the community development director it may be longer; provided, that if a lesser length serves the lots in the instant subdivision, such shorter length shall be the maximum permitted.

E. Access corridors may have official city street designations; provided, that the private nature shall also be indicated.

F. Curb, gutter, pavement and storm drainage facilities may be required at the discretion of the community development director to prevent stormwater erosion and damage and/or if required by other adopted codes and standards.

G. Private property may be dedicated to public use as streets by a deed of dedication acceptable to the city council or by preparing a plat in accordance with this title and recording the plat. [Ord. 17-18 § 1, 2018; Ord. 16-10 § 2, 2010; Ord. 14-00 § 1, 2000; Ord. 12-94 § 2, 1994; Ord. 40-93 § 1, 1993; Ord. 182 § 6, 1976. Formerly 16.08.050].

16.08.080 Application – Prerequisites.

A. A short plat application to be considered fully completed must include:

1. A map drawn to a legible scale, and which includes the following:

a. A vicinity map at a legible scale, showing the relationship of the proposed short plat to surrounding schools, parks, etc., and to all streets within 1,000 feet, or to the next major street, whichever is greater;

b. The name and address of the owner or owners, and the licensed land surveyor, the names of all existing abutting streets and subdivisions, and a legal description of the exterior boundaries of the land to be divided;

c. The location, width, and name of all proposed streets, the dimensions of other proposed rights-of-way, alleys, easements, parks, playgrounds, open spaces, schools, etc., the scale of the short plat, and a north arrow;

d. A contour map of the property within the proposed short plat showing the contours of property 50 feet beyond the perimeter of the proposed short plat, said contour map showing changes in elevation of two feet. In addition, the elevation, referenced to North American Vertical Datum of 1988 (NAVD 88), shall be shown for every corner of the short plat boundary. The map will also show the location and areas of all natural watercourses, major tree masses, major rock outcroppings, and other similar landscape features;

e. The dimensions and square footage of each lot, the dimensions and acreage of the total short plat;

f. All existing structures proposed to remain on the area to be subdivided, and all existing drain fields and wells;

g. The location and design of fencing to be constructed along abutting streets;

2. Evidence of an adequate domestic water supply for the intended use of each lot within the proposed short plat as required by state law and the applicable city requirements;

3. An application form, signed by the owner or his agent;

4. A certificate from a title insurance company, issued no more than 30 days prior to application, showing ownership of the property involved;

5. Those plats proposing individual on-site waste disposal systems as the means of sewage disposal must include either: verification from the Benton-Franklin Health District that health district regulations have been met; or that all required information has been received by the health district, and an estimated date when a final health district determination will be made;

6. Whether or not the property is to be connected to an irrigation source, and, if not, written verification from the appropriate irrigation district as to what is involved to connect to an irrigation source;

7. Survey and Monumentation. A subdivision of the portion of the section in which the short plat is located, showing original or established corners, a description and the original traverse of same showing error of closure and method of balancing, shall also be submitted. This is to be accompanied by a sketch showing all calculations necessary to determine the courses and distances of the plat;

8. Applications shall be accompanied by a fee to defray the administrative expenses incurred by the city and for costs of review and inspection by the community development director, public works director and other city employees. Said fee shall be in accordance with WRMC 16.04.120. [Ord. 2-24 § 3, 2024; Ord. 17-18 § 1, 2018; Ord. 16-10 § 2, 2010; Ord. 14-00 § 1, 2000. Formerly 16.08.060].

16.08.090 Short plat – Findings.

A. Consistent with RCW 58.17.110(1), each short plat decision shall provide for findings to determine the following: (1) if appropriate provisions are made for, but not limited to, the public health, safety, and general welfare, for open spaces, drainage ways, streets or roads, alleys, other public ways, transit stops, potable water supplies, sanitary wastes, parks and recreation, playgrounds, schools and school grounds, and shall consider all other relevant facts, including sidewalks and other planning features that assure safe walking conditions for students who only walk to and from school; and (2) whether the public interest will be served by the subdivision and dedication.

B. Consistent with RCW 58.17.110(2), a proposed short plat and dedication shall not be approved unless the community development director makes written findings that: (1) appropriate provisions are made for the public health, safety, and general welfare and for such open spaces, drainage ways, streets or roads, alleys, other public ways, transit stops, potable water supplies, sanitary wastes, parks and recreation, playgrounds, schools and school grounds and all other relevant facts, including sidewalks and other planning features that assure safe walking conditions for students who only walk to and from school; and (2) the public use and interest will be served by the platting of such subdivision and dedication. If it finds that the proposed subdivision and dedication make such appropriate provisions and that the public use and interest will be served, then the community development director shall approve the proposed subdivision and dedication. Dedication of land to any public body, provision of public improvements to serve the subdivision, and/or impact fees imposed under RCW 82.02.050 through 82.02.090 may be required as a condition of subdivision approval. Dedications shall be clearly shown on the final plat. No dedication, provision of public improvements, or impact fees imposed under RCW 82.02.050 through 82.02.090 shall be allowed that constitute an unconstitutional taking of private property. The community development director shall not as a condition to the approval of any subdivision require a release from damages to be procured from other property owners. [Ord. 17-18 § 1, 2018; Ord. 16-10 § 2, 2010].

16.08.095 Final short plat – General requirements.

A final short plat meeting all the requirements of state law, this title, and city regulations must be submitted to the community development department for approval within two years of the preliminary short plat approval.

A. An applicant for a preliminary short plat who files a written request with the community development director at least 45 days before the expiration of this two-year period may be granted one six-month extension; provided, that the applicant demonstrates that substantial progress has been made to complete the short plat.

B. Final Short Plat Requirements.

1. Letter from the applicant to the community development director requesting the preliminary plat be finalized.

2. Final walk-through of the streets, utilities, and infrastructure by the city staff, owner, and contractor must be completed and approved.

3. Letter of acceptance from the city for the water/sewer system and the road/storm sewer system or other public improvements.

4. All fees have been paid.

5. One PDF file of the plat map.

6. Final short plat map meeting recording standards of the office of the Benton County assessor and shall show all courses and distances necessary to restake any portion of the short plat from the map. All surrounding property shall be labeled in dotted lines whether platted or otherwise.

7. The finished short plat must show the description of the property platted, acknowledgments, dedication, approval by public works director and community development director and certificate of the surveyor who short platted the property. All certificates must be dated when signed, e.g.:

I, ___________________________, a registered land surveyor, do hereby certify that the plat of ____________________ is based upon an actual survey and subdivision of Section _______, Township ________, Range _______, that the distances and angles are shown thereon correctly and the monuments have been set and lot corners staked on the ground as shown on the plat.

________________________________Surveyor’s Signature

8. Official seals of attesting officers and the surveyor who platted the property shall be placed on the plat tracing.

9. The original plat map must have signature blocks for the following city officials:

a. Public works director.

b. Community development director.

c. Mayor.

d. City clerk. [Ord. 2-24 § 3, 2024].

16.08.100 Short plat – Filing.

Each short plat shall be filed for record in the office of the Benton County auditor and shall not be deemed approved until so filed. Such filing shall be at subdivider’s expense. A digital copy of the recorded short plat map without watermark shall be provided to the community development department within 30 days of recording. [Ord. 2-24 § 3, 2024; Ord. 17-18 § 1, 2018; Ord. 16-10 § 2, 2010; Ord. 14-00 § 1, 2000; Ord. 182 § 8, 1974. Formerly 16.08.080].

16.08.105 Preliminary short plat – Approval time.

Preliminary approval of a short plat shall be effective for a period of 24 months. One six-month extension can be granted by the community development director provided the applicant can demonstrate that substantial progress has been made to complete the short plat. [Ord. 17-18 § 1, 2018].

16.08.110 Violation – Procedure.

In the event of the subdivision and sale of lots in violation of the regulations of this chapter, the city may initiate an action to enjoin any transfer, sale, agreement or option by making application for an injunction in the superior court or pursue such other remedies as the law allows. [Ord. 17-18 § 1, 2018; Ord. 16-10 § 2, 2010; Ord. 14-00 § 1, 2000; Ord. 182 § 9, 1974. Formerly 16.08.090].