Building Heights on Spokane Falls Boulevard

Building Heights Code Amendments

Pursuant to a request by the Spokane Plan Commission, staff is preparing a proposed amendment to the Spokane Municipal Code, as it relates to building heights on Spokane Falls Boulevard adjacent to Riverfront Park. In order to gather wide public input and to inform the public as to the scope and topics under consideration, the following website has been prepared. Please take time to read through the site and answer the short survey at the end. Check back here for any updates on the project, including (eventually) the full proposed changes to the Spokane Municipal Code.

Plan Commission Consideration

The Spokane City Plan Commission held a public hearing on Wednesday, April 25, 2018, during which the Plan Commission heard public testimony related to proposed amendments to Spokane Municipal Code (SMC) 17C.124.220, the height and massing requirements applicable in downtown zones, specifically as it relates to bonus height provisions allowed within the DTC-100 zone.

Following the public hearing, the Plan Commission voted unanimously to forward a recommendation to the City Council to approve the proposal with a maximum floor plate of 18,750 feet and a minimum separation between towers of 50 feet. Additionally, Plan Commission voted to remove the single 15-foot stepback at 100 feet in height.

The proposed amendments will now go forward to City Council for their consideration. City Council will be briefed on this proposal at the Urban Experience Committee meeting, August 13 at 1:15 PM in the Council Briefing Center in the basement of City Hall. The public is welcome to attend the meeting; however, public comment is not taken during committee meetings. Following the Urban Experience Committee meeting, the item will be scheduled for a future City Council Hearing, during which public testimony will be taken. In the meantime, please feel free to provide written comment to Any comments received will be forwarded to the City Council prior to the hearing.

Related Documents

Past Work (Plan Commission Subcommittee and Final Report)

Following a request by members of the public and local landowners, the Spokane Plan Commission in April 2017 formed a subcommittee to study the stated concerns regarding the requirements of Spokane Municipal Code (SMC) 17C.124.220 as it relates to heights of buildings on the south side of Spokane Falls Boulevard in the vicinity of Riverfront Park. The requesters felt the code should be readdressed as they assert the height requirements make development of vacant properties on the south side of the street, across from the park, less attractive to developers. The subcommittee was formed on direction from Plan Commission President Dennis Dellwo, consisting of the following members:

Name Affiliation
Todd Beyreuther (Chair) Plan Commissioner
Mike Baker Plan Commissioner (alternate)
Chris Batten Plan Commissioner
Christy Jeffers Plan Commissioner
Greg Francis Community Assembly
Chris Wright Parks Board
Mark Richard Downtown Spokane Partnership
Andrew Rolwes Downtown Spokane Partnership
Jim Price Citizen Rep
Jim Kolva Riverside Neighborhood
Lisa Key Planning Director
Leroy Eadie Parks Director
Gary Bernardo Bernardo Wills Architects
Ann Martin Heylman Martin Architects
David Peterson Goodale & Barbieri

The subcommittee met at City Hall on four dates to explore the situation, consider the existing regulations and requirements, and study potential alternative resolutions to the stated issue. The meetings were to the public, though public comment was only be taken during the last 10-15 minutes of each meeting in order to allow the subcommittee to cover all the scheduled agenda items.

All meetings were held on the following dates in Conference Room 5A at the Spokane City Hall at 808 W. Spokane Falls Boulevard:

  • Meeting 1 (Agenda) – Tuesday May 16, 1:00-3:00 PM
    • This meeting will end with a walking tour of the affected properties.
  • Meeting 2 (Agenda) – Tuesday June 6, 1:00-3:00 PM
  • Meeting 3 (Agenda) – Tuesday, June 13, 1:00-3:00 PM
  • Meeting 4 (Agenda) – Tuesday, June 27, 1:00-3:00 PM

Following the last meeting, staff completed a written report of the project background, issues to be resolved, and recommended solutions to those issues. Staff then presented the report and its findings to the Plan Commission at a workshop. At that workshop the Plan Commission requested that City staff conduct an update to the Uniform Development Code in order to consider and incorporate the recommendations of the subcommittee.

Working Group Related Documents

Contact Information

Kevin Freibott
Assistant Planner, Planning & Development