City of Spokane

Spokane Municipal Code

***Note: Many local criminal codes can now be located under Chapter 10.60 SMC while others are now cited under the Revised Code of Washington (RCW), which was incorporated into the municipal code in 2022. (See SMC 10.58.010). Code Enforcement, including Noise Control and Animal Regulations are located in Chapters 10.62 through 10.74.

Title 17E
Chapter 17E.060
Section 17E.060.810

Title 17E Environmental Standards

Chapter 17E.060 Shoreline Regulations

Article VIII. Design Standards Specific to Shoreline Districts

Section 17E.060.810 Design Standards Applying to Downtown, Campus, and Great Gorge Districts
  1. Shoreline Relationships.
    1. Public Access
      1. Purpose.

To meet a basic objective of the Shoreline Management Act for public access to the shoreline.

      1. When public access is required, it shall be provided pursuant to SMC 17E.060.290. (R)
      1. Visual access shall be achieved by setting buildings back at least fifteen feet from property lines adjacent to public rights-of-way that intersect the shoreline jurisdiction. (R)

      1. A pathway connecting to the nearest public right-of-way is the preferred type of public access. (P)
      1. Physical access pathways shall be a minimum of ten feet clear width. (R)
      1. The use of pervious materials is recommended for pedestrian surfaces (including pathways and patios) to absorb stormwater run-off. Options include permeable interlocking unit pavers, porous concrete, or porous asphalt. (C)
      1. To prevent invasive weeds from colonizing along pathways in the shoreline buffer area, the design of any pathway shall include finished edges. Exposed gravel shoulders shall not be allowed in this area. Soil disturbance shall be minimized during construction and any disturbed soils shall be replanted consistent with native plant colonies in the immediate vicinity. (R)
      1. Signs shall be installed to indicate that the pathway is open to the public and the hours during which the public can access the pathway. (R)
    1. Site Design.
      1. Urban Green Streets and Urban Pathways.
        1. Street Trees and Planting Strips.
          1. Purpose.

To supplement the urban forest with new trees and planting as development and redevelopment occur.

          1. New development shall include street trees, installed in planting strips located between the curb and sidewalk. To promote tree health in order to gain the benefits associated with trees, consider opportunities when designing streets and sidewalks to provide as much uncompacted soil as possible. Designs shall allow for positive root growth using sustainable solutions that involve innovative means of structural support for the walking surface. (R)
          1. Planting strips shall be at least five feet wide and planted with ground cover or native grasses. (R)
          1. Native trees, such as evergreens, are encouraged when adequate space is available. (C)

        1. Urban Green Streets and Urban Pathways.
          1. Purpose.

To have streets add to the environmental quality of the shoreline environment.

          1. Streets within the shoreline jurisdiction shall be planted with a variety of trees, shrubs and ground cover. (R)
          1. Techniques for capturing and filtering stormwater run-off shall be incorporated into the design of streets, sidewalks, planting strips, and pathways. (R)
          1. Permeable pavement options are encouraged on pedestrian surfaces. These may include permeable interlocking unit pavers, porous concrete, or porous asphalt. (C)
          1. Alternatives to standard curbs and planting strips are encouraged to reduce concentrated storm water flowing into landscaped areas. (C)

        1. Overlooks in Public Development.

          1. Purpose.

To make the public aware of the rich history and environmental systems associated with the river and the shoreline.

          1. Along streets, pathways or within public parks, overlooks should be provided where views of historic and aesthetic features or landmarks of the river are available. (C)
          1. Methods, such as signs, should be used to describe aspects of the river, such as geology, hydrology, history, or native cultures. Interpretations can be literal (pictures and words) or symbolic (artwork, shapes, colors, inlays). (C)
      1. Overlooks in Private Development.
        1. Purpose

To encourage private development to incorporate features that help people understand the setting.

        1. Along pathways and public spaces, overlooks should be provided where views of the river are available. (C)
        1. Methods should be used to describe aspects of the river, such as geology, hydrology, history, or native cultures. Interpretations can be literal (pictures and words) or symbolic (artwork, shapes, colors, inlays). (C)
      1. Best Management Practices (BMP).
        1. Purpose.

To encourage site design to make use of state of the art techniques.

        1. Site design shall reflect nationally recognized Best Management Practices with respect to paving, erosion control, infiltration and filtration, retention and detention, and surface water quality. (R)
        1. A shoreline construction site plan indicating how construction BMP’s will be applied on shoreline sites during construction shall be required, pursuant to SMC 17E.060.260. (R)
      1. Low Impact Development (LID).
        1. Purpose.

To encourage site design techniques that protects the environment and water resources by considering the site’s pre-existing hydrologic conditions.

        1. A site plan and shoreline construction site plan shall be required that indicate ways of minimizing impact on existing features, pursuant to SMC 17G.061.110 and SMC 17E.060.260. (R)
        1. Site design consistent with LID principles is encouraged. Examples of LID techniques include site design to retain existing trees and vegetation, impervious surface reduction, rain gardens, retention swales, permeable paving, green roofs, rain barrels, and downspout connections to planters. (C)

  1. Site Development.
    1. Vegetation Conservation/Tree Preservation.
      1. Purpose.

To maintain vegetative cover that holds slopes, filters run-off and provides habitat.

      1. There shall be no net loss of vegetative cover within the shoreline jurisdiction. (R)
      1. At least twenty-five percent of existing healthy “significant trees” (over six-inches in caliper) as identified by a qualified professional and shown on a shoreline construction site plan shall be retained when a site is developed. Design and construction methods shall ensure the protection and health of retained trees during construction. (R)
      1. Within the designated shoreline buffers, native vegetation shall be preserved. Lawns shall not extend into this area. (R)
      1. Vegetation that is removed for development purposes shall be replaced on site. Alternatively, if a qualified professional determines that is not feasible, the applicant shall contribute an amount equal to replacing the vegetation on site to a shoreline restoration fund to be used to restore identified restoration sites pursuant to the City of Spokane shoreline restoration plan. (R)

    1. Clearing and Grading.
      1. Purpose.

To carefully control the effects of land disturbance so that the natural systems immediately adjacent to the river are protected.

      1. Site design shall identify measures to protect the shoreline buffer from disturbance both during construction and throughout occupancy. (R)
      1. Limited removal of noxious species of non-native plants shall be allowed so that native species can thrive, pursuant to SMC 17E.060.270, Vegetation Replacement Plan. (R)
      1. Altering the natural flow of water to the river shall not be allowed, except during construction to prevent the flow of sediments or chemicals into the river. (R)
  1. Building Design.
    1. Sustainability.
      1. Purpose.

To encourage new development to embody sustainable features.

      1. New development within the shoreline should be designed to reflect criteria for at least LEED Certification, if not higher. (C)
    1. Green Roofs.
      1. Purpose.

To encourage innovative, sustainable elements in new roofs.

      1. New commercial development should consider the appropriateness of incorporating green roof technology as a possible option to capture, retain, and filter rainwater. (C)
    1. Building/Shoreline Compatibility.
      1. Purpose.

To ensure building design that complements and blends with the natural character of the shoreline environment.

      1. Buildings shall incorporate a variety of features to reduce their bulk and scale. At least two of the following shall be employed (R):
        1. Bay windows.
        1. Visible roofs such as pitched, sloped, curved, angled.
        1. Deep off-sets of facades.
        1. Projecting elements creating shadow lines.
        1. Terraces or balconies
      1. The upper floor(s) of building shall incorporate at least one of the following features (R):
        1. A visible roof: Pitched, sloped, peaked, curved, angled.
        1. A stepping back of the top floor(s) by at least five feet.
        1. An overhanging roof form.
        1. A distinct change of materials on the upper floor(s).

  1. Signs.

Signs within the shoreline jurisdiction shall be regulated pursuant to chapter 17C.240 SMC. (R)

  1. Lighting – Cut-off.
    1. Purpose.

To prevent glare and spillover.

    1. All site lighting, including parking lot lighting, shall be directed downward, using internal or external cut-off methods and must be contained on site. (R)

Date Passed: Monday, April 19, 2021

Effective Date: Sunday, May 23, 2021

ORD C36034 Section 12