Chapter 17.32


17.32.010    Intent.

17.32.020    Common open space requirements.

17.32.030    Additional planned development permit regulations.

17.32.040    Preapplication conference.

17.32.050    Preliminary development plan application.

17.32.060    Preliminary development plan notice, hearings and decision.

17.32.070    Final development plan.

17.32.080    Modification of final development plan.

17.32.010 Intent.

The intent of the planned development permit process is to allow a variety of uses and developments within the town while retaining the ability of the town to review and condition those developments which might without restriction infringe on other uses in the district or threaten the environmental or aesthetic attributes of the town. The planned development permit process allows review and the implementation of restrictions or conditions on a development by the town pursuant to identified issues and standards in order to achieve the following objectives:

A. Provide for flexibility in the design of land uses and activities to encourage more creative approaches to development, to result in more efficient, aesthetic and environmentally responsive use of lands within the town;

B. Allow for public input and response by town citizens and interested persons, agencies and groups, to better assure that land uses and development within the town reflect the needs and desires of town citizens and are consistent with the public welfare of the town;

C. Permit creativity in design and placement of buildings, use of required open spaces, provision for on-site circulation plans, off-street parking and other site design elements that better utilize the potentials of special features of the property, including location, geography, topography, vegetation, size or shape, and scenic views;

D. Facilitate the provision of economical and adequate public improvements, including streets and utilities;

E. Minimize and/or mitigate the impacts of development on valuable natural resources and unique natural or existing features including but not limited to key wildlife habitats, riparian habitats, floodplains and other wetlands, mature tree stands, steep slopes, unique or aesthetically important views and vistas, and similar resources and features;

F. Encourage the incorporation of public access to recreational opportunities, including trail systems, as a part of development activities;

G. Allow areas to be combined together for development that would otherwise be developed on a lot by lot basis, and to develop the area jointly with clustered or common features and structures and shared roads and utilities for more economic use of the land and better utilization of limited land and natural resources and maintenance of open space areas;

H. Assure that aesthetics are considered in the architectural design of structures and in the overall development plans, and are a part of the review process of significant developments within the town;

I. Provide regulations for the planned development permit process which will give notice to developers of pertinent issues, concerns and limitations in planning of projects. (Ord. 372 § 8(1), 1990)

17.32.020 Common open space requirements.

Residential use planned development only:

A. Required Open Space Dedication. Residential use planned developments shall include lands dedicated to open space as defined and limited in this section which open space areas shall meet the following minimum sizes expressed as a percentage of the size of the total planned development parcel:

1. Residential II district: forty (40) percent;

2. Residential III district: thirty (30) percent;

3. Business I district: thirty (30) percent;

4. Business III district: thirty (30) percent.

B. Open space areas in a planned development shall meet the following minimum requirements:

1. Open space area requirements cannot be met by inclusion of roads, utility structures, parking areas or other structures in determining the size of the open space area; required setback areas and landscape areas (except parking areas) may be included as open space area.

2. The location, shape, size and character of the open space must be suitable for the particular development; open space areas shall not be excessively fragmented.

3. Open space must be retained or restored to its native state or used for approved agricultural or recreational purposes. The uses authorized for open space must be appropriate to the scale and character of the proposed development, considering its size, density, topography and number and type of dwelling units to be included, if applicable.

4. Open space shall be suitably improved for its intended use if applicable (i.e., restored to beneficial native habitat), including provision for suitable weed control and revegetation plans. Any improvements to be permitted in the open space area shall be appropriate to the authorized uses and must conserve and enhance the natural features of the open space.

C. The development schedule must coordinate dedication and improvement of open space with construction of the development improvements, including proper phasing of open space areas with phasing of other portions of the development.

D. Open space must be protected in the final development plan by provisions to assure permanent retention and maintenance of the open space areas in accordance with approved uses. Such protection may be in the form of recorded restrictive covenants including provision requiring town approval prior to any amendment or repeal of any portion thereof, or dedication of open space areas to the town when such dedication is determined by the town to be in its best interest and is accepted by the town in writing, or any other assurances of protection deemed by the town to be both practical and legally sufficient to assure the permanent retention and maintenance of the open space areas. All legal documents necessary to implement the provisions for such protection shall be filed by the applicant with the final development plan and shall be subject to approval as to form by the town attorney. All such protective provisions shall vest in the town the right to enforce the terms thereof as they relate to permanent retention and maintenance of the open spaces and limitation of their uses as approved in the plan, including right of the town to recover all costs of any enforcement action or of necessary maintenance not being performed, from the violators including owners of the property within the development in the event of lack of proper maintenance. (Ord. 372 § 8(2), 1990)

17.32.030 Additional planned development permit regulations.

A. Utilities. All electrical lines, telephone lines, and other wiring conduits and similar facilities in planned developments shall be placed underground by the developer, unless this requirement is waived by the planning commission and the town council. Waiver of this requirement must be based upon the physical constraints of the site and/or technical difficulties with such underground installations which are unique to the lot or parcel, and shall not be based upon financial considerations alone. Waiver shall not be permitted when it would be violative of the requirements of this title or other town ordinances or regulations for the zone in which the planned development is located. When a planned development includes utility extensions which are to be dedicated to and become the responsibility of the town upon completion and acceptance thereof, the developer shall provide to the town a one-year maintenance bond for such utility extension to cover all necessary maintenance and repairs of the utility extension during the covered period. The one-year term may be required to be increased when special considerations or unique circumstances make a longer term advisable for the protection and welfare of the town, and upon order for such increased bond period by the town council; provided, that in no event shall the one-year term for the maintenance bond be reduced. Water and sewer line extensions shall be properly engineered with plans approved by the town and shall meet all applicable town, state and federal requirements.

B. Views. Planned development proposals shall give consideration to views, both those available from the subject lot(s) or parcel in orientation of the development, and those views from neighboring properties and roadways which might be obscured or obstructed by the development. Proposals shall be designed to minimize obstruction of river views and of other desirable views from neighboring properties, including usage of more stringent height limitations, view corridors, and building orientation and location restrictions where feasible and appropriate.

C. Trails and Recreation Facilities. As additional consideration for increased densities and development approval on riverfront parcels, developers may be required to dedicate a public nonmotorized trail along the river (in such location as shall be determined by the developer with approval of the administrator and in consultation with town departments and resource agencies). Residential planned developments shall consider additional trail systems in their development plans to promote both nonmotorized recreational opportunities and pedestrian circulation. Commercial planned developments shall consider and provide for (where possible) pedestrian access to the development and through the development. Multifamily housing planned developments or larger scale residential planned developments shall consider other recreational areas and facilities, such as community parks, picnic areas and play areas, in the design of the development.

D. Landscape Plans. Planned development applications shall include a general landscape plan which shall include plantings for perimeter buffers (including light diffusion and site obstruction), and which shall concentrate on low-water need-plantings where feasible. Timed irrigation systems will generally be required in planned developments to minimize irrigation water needs.

E. Structural Design. The exterior design of planned development structures shall be subject to review for conformity with neighborhood designs, if any, and with the western motif of the town. All commercial use planned developments, and any mixed use planned developments which include commercial uses and residential planned developments which are located in or adjacent to a business district or in a residential III district shall comply with the applicable requirements set forth in Chapter 15.08, or any amendments thereto or any replacements thereof.

F. Additional Areas of Regulation. Those areas of concern set forth in Section 17.32.060B below as planned development program items shall be reviewed by the town and may be subject to regulation to meet the specified performance goal for each item where appropriate. (Ord. 489 § 9(A), 1998; Ord. 372 § 8(3), 1990)

17.32.040 Preapplication conference.

An applicant for a planned development permit shall schedule and attend a preapplication conference as set forth in Section 19.04.010 of the Winthrop Municipal Code. (Ord. 489 § 9(B), 1998; Ord. 372 § 8(4), 1990)

17.32.050 Preliminary development plan application.

Formal application for a planned development permit shall be made in accordance with the provisions of Section 19.04.020, which requires submission of the application form and the preliminary development plan to the town clerk. The preliminary development plan shall include the following information and elements:

A. Development Site Plan. The development site plan shall be a dimensional map drawn to a scale of not less than one inch equals one hundred (100) feet, and shall include a vicinity map of a reduced scale showing the proposed development in relation to existing landmarks. Nine copies of the development site plan shall be submitted by the applicant. The development site plan shall include the following:

1. Boundaries of the site and north arrow;

2. Location, dimensions and names of all existing and proposed roads serving, adjacent to or lying within one-quarter mile of the site;

3. Areas proposed to be developed with approximate footprints of proposed buildings and their nature (i.e., residential, community use, commercial, office, etc.);

4. Proposed location(s) and dimensions of common open space areas;

5. Proposed public dedications;

6. Location, dimensions and schematic design of off-street parking areas or facilities, showing points of ingress and egress from such sites;

7. Location of major physiographic features such as rivers, canals, floodplain areas, etc.;

8. Existing topographic contours for the entire site, at intervals of not more than five feet, together with existing drainage and identification of existing vegetation;

9. Proposed land uses, densities and building types;

10. Pedestrian and vehicular circulation pattern;

11. Location and type of all existing and proposed recreational improvements, if any, to include nonmotorized trails and paths;

12. Conceptual landscape plan;

13. Proposed grading and drainage design.

B. Written Planned Development Program and Specifications. The written planned development program shall include concise and detailed evaluation and information on the following items, and shall explain how the proposed goal of each item has or will be met, or why such goal is unattainable for the project:

1. An explanation of the density of the proposed project. The density goals are set forth in the regulations for the various zone districts;

2. Proposed ownership pattern;

3. Operation and maintenance proposal for the project amenities, roadways, utilities, etc. (i.e., homeowner association, co-op, condominiums). The performance goal is to assure that a long-range maintenance program is provided for all common areas and commonly used utilities and roadways, with provision for collection of prorate share of costs and expenses of such maintenance and for decision making with regard thereto;

4. General timetable for development, including any project phasing and conditions therefor and any foreseeable future expansion. The performance goal is to provide sufficient open spaces and project utilities and amenities for each phase of development, so that each phase can stand alone as a satisfactory completed project;

5. Description of existing and proposed community and recreational facilities. The performance goal is for larger projects or projects that have a significant impact on existing formal or informal recreational opportunities to minimize and mitigate such impact by and expansion of retention existing opportunity or provision for new or improved community or public recreation opportunities, including park areas, access to river or public lands, or recreational improvements such as pools, tennis courts, etc.;

6. Visual impacts, including description of project view orientation, proposals to minimize view obstruction from adjacent lands and public roadways, and proposed site barriers for utility or loading areas, parking areas, etc. The performance goal is to maintain existing views of river areas, mountains and open lands, to preserve the aesthetic qualities which the town values, to provide aesthetically pleasing visual barriers to unsightly areas, and to assure that new developments benefit from the available views without preventing their enjoyment by others;

7. Landscaping, both existing and proposed, and irrigation system proposed. The performance goal is to assure a long-range landscape plan which provides necessary greenbelt around structures for fire protection, provides for tree and vegetative buffers to reduce noise, light and view impacts from neighboring lands, minimizes irrigation water needs, and prevents noxious weeds;

8. Storm water collection and disposal plan. The performance goal is to assure that storm water runoff after development does not exceed the amount before development, and that storm water disposal has no negative impact on the water quality of either surface water or groundwater of the Methow Valley, and to provide where possible for a storm-water management system which can be extended to serve future developments at the developers’ expense;

9. Geophysical characteristics of the site, including soils, slope, drainage patterns, erosion problems and controls. The performance goal is to prevent further or accelerated erosion of slopes or topsoil, provide for adequate site drainage and storm water collection (see subdivision 8 of this subsection) properly designed for the site, and to identify problem areas prior to development to prevent unanticipated erosion or drainage problems;

10. Air quality considerations and mitigation measures, including dust control measures. The performance goal is to allow no degradation of the air quality of the Winthrop area, either from single projects or by cumulative impacts, and to prevent degradation of the ambient air quality by utilizing sufficient dust control measures both during periods of construction, and after project completion. Automobile emissions will be considered, and projects which will have a significant traffic impact will be expected to investigate all possible avenues to minimize motor vehicle usage, including provision for mass transit (such as bus or van runs to or from the project) and pedestrian/bike access;

11. Traffic circulation elements, including anticipated traffic increases (vehicles per day) and major times thereof. The performance goal is to assure a smooth flow of traffic through and throughout the town, to avoid traffic congestion and hazardous intersections, mergers or other traffic patterns, and to minimize increased traffic loads by encouraging pedestrian and nonvehicular transportation or mass transit;

12. Noise considerations and mitigation measures therefor. The performance goal is to minimize noise impacts on surrounding properties and the town in general, and mitigation measures to be examined include placing indoors those recreation facilities which may generate noise in evening or night hours, limiting motor vehicle usage within the project, plantings to buffer noises, and limiting allowable hours and days of construction;

13. A concise statement of the general public benefits to be derived from the development of the proposed project, which may include but are not limited to increased open space, special wildlife or recreation benefits, perimeter transitions to surrounding land uses, or new public facilities included in the development (including dedicated or public trails, parks, etc.). The performance goal is to assure that all approved projects benefit the general welfare of the town;

14. Proposals to control or prohibit further land divisions, where appropriate. The performance goal is to provide long-range, perpetual restriction on future division of the developed property beyond the approved density and/or below the approved minimum lot sizes, and to eliminate the need for town oversight to enforce such approved densities/lot sizes;

15. Description of planned uses of and improvements to common open space areas, if any, and proposals to ensure future maintenance of common open space areas, and to ensure compliance with the open space requirements set forth in Section 17.32.020;

16. An explanation of all restrictions and proposals to protect wildlife, including but not limited to dog control, fencing restrictions, maintenance of riparian areas, and maintenance or reestablishment of recommended native vegetation for wildlife habitat. The performance goal is to allow no net loss of key or critical wildlife habitats, to provide for wildlife passage through developed areas, and to minimize the threat of domestic pets to wildlife.

C. Preliminary Utilities Plan and Specifications. The preliminary utilities plan and specifications shall depict the planned extension of any town utilities, including water and sewer lines, together with specifications and preliminary engineering therefor, and showing compliance with all state and town rules, regulations and codes applicable to such utility extensions; and shall detail any utility installations which are not an extension of town utilities. The preliminary utilities plan shall reveal those utility extensions which are desired to be dedicated to the town upon completion. Three copies of the preliminary utilities plan and specifications shall be submitted by the applicant.

D. SEPA environmental checklist and any fee charged by the town for the filing and processing thereof. (Ord. 489 § 9 (C –F), 1998; Ord. 372 § 8(5), 1990)

17.32.060 Preliminary development plan notice, hearings and decision.

A. Notice. Upon receipt of a complete preliminary development plan application as defined in Section 19.04.030, the administrator shall process and give notice of the application in accordance with Section 19.04.040 and Chapter 19.06. Failure of any agency to comment after receipt of copy of the application and within the required time period shall be construed as lack of objection to the proposal.

B. Hearing. A public hearing on the preliminary development plan shall be held in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 19.10.

C. EIS. If in accordance with Chapter 19.08, the SEPA responsible official determines that an environmental impact statement is required pursuant to the State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA), then the time limits set forth above for hearing and consideration by the planning commission shall not commence to run until the final environmental impact statement is issued.

D. Planning Commission Recommendation. After holding a public hearing in accordance with Chapter 19.10, the Commission shall follow the requirements of Chapter 19.10 in issuing its recommendation to the town council. The recommendation of the planning commission shall be in writing, with all conditions of approval (if any) precisely stated, and shall be accompanied by findings of fact to justify such recommendation. Conditions may include, but shall not be limited to, change of types of uses, limitations on density, change in locations of improvements or uses, provision for pedestrian trails, conveyance of land, money or other property to the town for the purpose of providing public facilities, services or other mitigation needed, and/or the monitoring of development proposed or specific impacts therefrom. The planning commission may recommend disapproval of the application if, in the opinion of the commission, impacts from the proposed project cannot be mitigated sufficiently to assure maintenance of the public health, safety and welfare, or if the comprehensive planning goals and/or the policies and objectives stated in this chapter are not met. When the application calls for construction or alteration of roads, utilities, or other improvements for which public agencies would have responsibility for completion should the developer fail to complete them adequately, or when the application or the recommendation of the planning commission conditions the project on improvements or changes to mitigate anticipated adverse impacts therefrom, and when such required improvements will not be completed at the time of final approval of the plan, the planning commission shall recommend to the town council that a bond or other acceptable security be required of the developer in an amount equal to at least one hundred twenty (120) percent of the estimated cost of the required improvements. If the development is to be done in stages, the planning commission shall ensure that open spaces and facilities proposed for the entire development be developed or committed in proportion to the impact and needs of each phase of construction of the development.

E. Town Council Action. Upon receipt of the planning commission’s recommendation on a preliminary development plan application, the town council shall, at its next public meeting, set a date to consider the recommendation. At such scheduled public meeting where the recommendation on an application is to be considered, the council shall review the application, the recommendation of the planning commission with all accompanying findings and information, the minutes of the public hearing thereon held by the planning commission and the summary of comments received on the application, environmental information pursuant to SEPA, and all other relevant evidence presented to it. In the event that the town council does not vote to summarily approve the recommendation of the planning commission, without significant change thereto, then the council shall set a date for a public hearing thereon at which all interested persons may appear and be heard. Notice of such public hearing shall be published and posted as required in Section 17.36.080 of this title. At the conclusion of the public hearing, the council shall approve, conditionally approve or disapprove the preliminary development plan application or a revised version thereof, including findings of fact and conclusions to support such decision. In the event that the council approves or conditionally approves the preliminary development plan application, such approval or conditional approval shall be binding on the town and on the applicant as to the general intent of the development and apportionment of the land for buildings, uses, circulation patterns and designs, other improvements and open space areas, and densities, and shall constitute approval for the applicant to develop the streets and roads, utilities and other infrastructure improvements in accordance with the preliminary development plan (as conditioned, if applicable) and any additional plans required by the town in applicable ordinances and approved by the town superintendent or the town sewer superintendent, and landscaping. (Ord. 489 § 9(G –J), 1998; Ord. 372 § 8(6), 1990)

17.32.070 Final development plan.

When the developer has completed all necessary improvements of roads, utilities and other infrastructure requirements or has bonded the same for completion, and has taken all other action as required by the preliminary development plan approval and any conditions thereon, the developer shall submit his/her final development plan to the administrator, in triplicate, including recordable form thereof signed by all owners (including lienholder of record) of the property included in the planned development and on stable base mylar polyester film or equivalent approved by the administrator. If the administrator, upon receipt of such final development plan, including copies of any necessary covenants, property owner’s association documents, and other documents necessary to meet the terms of the preliminary approval, and binder or commitment with form of the required maintenance bond on dedicated utility extensions, determines that the final development plan is consistent with the preliminary development plan as approved or conditioned, and that any bond is sufficient to assure completion of any unfinished improvements, or maintenance of dedicated improvements, the administrator shall so inform the town council by written recommendation, and the town council shall at its next public meeting set a date for consideration of approval of the final development plan. The town council shall, at such public meeting, determine whether the final development plan is consistent with the preliminary application as approved or conditioned, whether any required bond is adequate, and whether the requirements of this title, other applicable ordinances and state law have been satisfied by the developer. The council shall then approve the final development plan, refer it to the planning commission for further review of specified issues or concerns, or disapprove the final development plan.

A. No final development plan shall be considered for approval unless all other permits and approvals necessary for development of the project, except building permits, are obtained and/or approved, and including Shoreline Management Act permits or approvals, floodplain permits, approval as to western theme for all buildings and structures which come within the requirements of Chapter 15.08 or any amendments thereto, and any other applicable environmental or land use permits and approvals.

B. If the council approves the final development plan, the mayor shall sign the approved plan, and a fully signed copy thereof, together with all other documents necessary to such approval, shall be filed with the town. The final development plan shall then be recorded with the Okanogan County auditor, along with recording of any other necessary documents.

C. The terms and conditions of the approved final development plan, as filed and recorded, shall constitute limitations on the use of the land included therein and upon development of the site, which shall be enforced by all means included therein or allowed by law.

D. Approval of the final development plan shall constitute authorization for the developer or his/her successors or assigns in the property, to proceed with the development thereof following issuance of all other appropriate building, sewer or other permits or approvals by the town, in accordance with the terms and conditions of the final development plan as approved.

E. Approval of a final development plan shall be valid for a term of two years following issuance thereof, and construction shall commence within said two-year period and shall be completed within two years after commencement, except as to phasing approved as a part of the final development plan, unless extended by the town council upon recommendation of the administrator and application therefor by the developer (or his/her assigns), for good cause shown. An extension shall be valid for one additional year, and no more than three extensions shall be given for any planned development permit. Extensions may be conditioned by the town council after recommendation by the administrator.

F. If construction under a final development plan is not commenced and completed within the time limits set forth in subsection E of this section, or any allowed extensions thereof, then the planned development permit approval shall expire and any future development of the subject property shall be in accordance with the zoning and land use ordinances then in effect, without regard to such prior planned development permit approval.

G. A final development plan approval for a planned development which includes division of property into separate lots or parcels shall constitute subdivision approval for such land division. (Ord. 372 § 8(7), 1990)

17.32.080 Modification of final development plan.

A. Minor Modifications. Minor changes in the location, siting and height of buildings and structures may be authorized by the administrator without additional public hearings or town council review if required by engineering or other circumstances not foreseen at the time the final plan was approved. No change authorized by the administrator may cause any of the following:

1. A change in the use or character of the development;

2. An increase in overall coverage by structures;

3. An increase in the intensity of use;

4. An increase in the problems of traffic circulation and public utilities;

5. A reduction in approved open space;

6. A reduction in off-street parking and/or loading space;

7. A reduction in required pavement widths.

B. Major Modifications. All other changes in use, or rearrangement of lots, blocks and/or building tracts, or any changes in the provision for common open spaces, or any other changes from the final development plan as approved or conditioned, except those listed in subsection A of this section, must be approved by the town council after public hearing thereon by the planning commission and recommendation therefrom, and upon formal application by the developer (or his/her assigns) including payment of required fees and submission of SEPA environmental checklist for the proposed modification, which shall be considered as a supplement to all environmental information provided with the original planned development permit application. Any changes which are approved in the final development plan must be recorded and filed as amendments in accordance with the procedure established for the recording and filing of the initial final development plan documents. (Ord. 372 § 8(8), 1990)