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A. Purpose. The Old Town district is comprised of the original downtown and includes a number of historic structures and gathering places, including a central park. The Old Town district is established to be a center of pedestrian-oriented retail activity in the Downtown neighborhood. The regulations shaping development in this district provide for an urban village pattern and rhythm which encourages narrow ground floor storefronts, small blocks, narrow streets with curbside parking, mixed-use residential/office/service buildings, and pedestrian-scale architecture. The regulations also encourage the enhancement of existing older buildings in Old Town with small ground floor retail spaces, characterized by narrow bay spacing complementary to pedestrian activity and interest, and office or residential spaces in upper stories. The pedestrian nature of the area is emphasized through lower parking requirements and plans for creation of parking lots/structures in a few central locations at the edge of these areas. This district provides for a full range of retail uses such as specialty and comparison shopping, eating and entertainment establishments, as well as general and professional services, and residential uses.

B. Maximum Development Yield.

Table 21.10.030A
Maximum Development Yield

Allowed

Base

Maximum

Illustrations

Height

5 stories

6 stories

Example of a 5-story building

Example of 6-story building

Lot Coverage

100 percent

100 percent

These are office building examples using Transfer Development Rights and Green Building Program to achieve the maximum achievable floor area within the maximum allowed building height. Residential and mixed-use residential developments may have similar height, but volume will differ due to setback and open space requirements.

C. Regulations Common to All Uses.

Table 21.10.030B
Regulations Common to All Uses

Regulation

Standard

Notes and Exceptions

Front Setback (distance from back of curb)

Front and side street (commercial use)

See Map 10.3, Downtown Pedestrian System

Setbacks along Downtown streets are regulated by the Downtown Pedestrian System which specifies street frontage standards between the street curb and the face of buildings, depending on site location.

Front and side street (residential use on ground floor)

Not permitted on ground floor street fronts of Type I pedestrian streets as shown on Map 10.3, Downtown Pedestrian System.

Setback Line (distance from property line)

Side Commercial

0 feet

Rear Commercial

0 feet

Side Residential

See RZC 21.10.130.D, Residential Setback Requirements

Rear Residential

10 feet

Yard adjoining BNSF ROW or Parks

14 feet

Yard adjoining Mid-Block Path

See Map 10.3, Downtown Pedestrian System

Other Standards

Minimum Building Height

n/a

Maximum Building Height without TDRs

5 Stories

Building height is limited to three stories for some parcels fronting Leary Way. See RZC 21.10.110.B, Height Limit Overlay.

Maximum Building Height with TDRs and GBP

6 Stories

A. Building height is limited to three stories for some parcels fronting Leary Way. See RZC 21.10.110.B, Height Limit Overlay.

B. One floor of additional height may be achieved with the use of Transfer Development Rights. See RZC 21.10.160, Using Transfer Development Rights (TDRs), or through compliance with RZC 21.67, Green Building and Green Infrastructure Incentive Program (GBP).

Maximum Lot Coverage

100 percent

For residential development without ground floor commercial/office, lot coverage shall be governed by the Downtown Residential Densities Chart, RZC 21.10.130.B.

Base FAR Without TDRs

1.25

A. Maximum FAR without TDRs or the GBP for nonresidential space is 1.25. Residential space within a mixed-use building is exempt from TDR or GBP requirements. See RZC 21.10.160, Using Transfer Development Rights (TDRs), and RZC 21.67, Green Building and Green Infrastructure Incentive Program (GBP). 

B. All legal lots are entitled to 10,000 ft gfa without the use of TDRs or GBP, provided that other site requirements can be met.

Allowed Residential Density

Depends on Lot Size

See RZC 21.10.130.B, Downtown Residential Densities Chart.

Drive-through

n/a

Drive-through facilities are prohibited except where expressly permitted in the Allowed Uses and Basic Development Standards table below.

D. Allowed Uses and Basic Development Standards. The following table contains the basic zoning regulations that apply to uses. To use the chart, read down the left-hand column titled “Use.” When you have located the use that interests you, read across to find regulations that apply to that use. Uses are permitted unless otherwise specified in the Special Regulations column. Permitted uses may require land use permit approval. See RZC 21.76.020, Overview of the Development Process, for more information. Uses not listed are not permitted.

Table 21.10.030C
Allowed Uses and Basic Development Standards

Section

Use

Parking Ratio:
Unit of Measure Minimum required, Maximum allowed

Special Regulations

Residential1

1

Attached dwelling unit, 2-4 units

Dwelling Unit (1.0, 2.25) Plus one guest space per four units for projects with six units or more. Curbside parking along the site may be counted towards up to 25 percent of the required off-street parking.

A. Maximum density per lot dependent upon size and width of lot, per RZC 21.10.130.B, Downtown Residential Densities Chart

B. Not permitted on ground floor street fronts of Type I pedestrian streets as shown on Map 10.3, Downtown Pedestrian System, or where ground floor residences may be negatively impacted by nearby nonresidential uses. Residential uses may be allowed on ground floor streets fronts of Type II Pedestrian Streets, per RZC 21.62.020.F.5, Ground Floor Residential Uses on Type II Pedestrian Streets, but not within the shorter distance of 50 feet or a quarter-block length from a street intersection

C. Affordable Housing requirements apply to developments of 10 units or more. See RZC 21.20.020, Applicability.

2

Multifamily Structure,
Mixed-Use Residential

3

Dormitory

Bed (0.5, 1.0)

4

Residential suite

5

Housing Services for the Elderly

See Special Regulations

Parking requirements are as follows:

A. Multifamily housing for senior citizens: Unit (0.5, 2.0)

B. Nursing home or long-term care facility: 4 patient beds (1.0, 1.0)

C. Retirement residence with no skilled nursing facility: Unit (1.0, 1.0)

D. Retirement residence with skilled nursing facility: Worker on largest shift (1.25, 1.25)

E. A traffic mitigation plan is required. The plan shall address traffic control; parking management, including mitigation of overflow parking into adjoining residential areas; and traffic movement to the arterial street system.

General Sales or Service

6

General Sales or Services

1,000 sq ft gfa (2.0, 2.0)

A. Uses not permitted include:

1. Gas station.

2. Auto repair

3. Automobile sales with outdoor display and storage. 

4. Rental storage and mini-warehouses

5. Retail sales or services involving drive-through/drive-up facilities, except drive-through facilities confined within the garage of a multistory building of at least three stories shall be allowed when the drive-through lanes provide a queuing length adequate to serve peak demand without overflowing onto public sidewalks or streets, as determined by a professional traffic engineer and approved by the City

6. Uses which are materially detrimental to typical downtown office and residential uses in terms of excessive noise and vibration, truck traffic, fumes, and other potential impacts. 

B. Parking standards for restaurant uses:

1. Sit-down restaurant: 1,000 sq ft gfa (2.0, 9.0). 

2. Take-out restaurant: 1,000 sq ft gfa (2.0, 10.0). 

3. The Technical Committee may waive the parking requirement for restaurant/deli/café uses 1,000 sq ft gfa, or less in area that support/enhance the City’s vision for creating/enhancing Downtown as a pedestrian place provided:

a. The use is located in an office building and primarily serves the occupants and guests of the office building; or 

b. The use is visible from and within 100 feet of a promenade or Downtown park, such as Luke McRedmond Park, Anderson Park, O’Leary Park, The Edge Skate Park, or the 83rd Street Promenade, for example, or within 100 feet of a critical areas buffer of the Sammamish River and access to the River Trail, and the use is designed to enliven the pedestrian environment and primarily cater to pedestrians and outdoor patrons. 

C. The maximum number of parking stalls allowed may be increased to 5.0 per 1,000 sq ft of gross floor area for the retail components of mixed-use developments.

7

Hotels, Motels, and Other Accommodation Services1, 2

Rental room (1.0, 1.0)

8

Marijuana retail sales

1,000 sq ft gfa (2.0, 5.0)

See RZC 21.41 marijuana-related uses for additional requirements.

Transportation, Communication, Information, and Utilities

9

Road, Ground Passenger, and Transit Transportation

1,000 sq ft gfa (2.0, 2.0)

Regional light rail transit system and office uses only. No vehicle storage except light rail vehicles.

10

Rapid charging station

Adequate to accommodate peak use

Shall not be located on a parcel that abuts a residential zone, RZC 21.04.030 Comprehensive Allowed Uses Chart.

11

Battery exchange station

Shall not be located on a parcel that abuts a residential zone.

12

Communications and Information

1,000 sq ft gfa (2.0, 2.0)

13

Local Utilities

14

Wireless Communication Facilities

N/A

See RZC 21.56. Wireless Communication Facilities, for specific development requirements.

Arts, Entertainment, and Recreation

15

Arts, Entertainment, and Recreation

Adequate to accommodate peak use

16

Natural and other recreational parks

1,000 sq ft gfa (0, adequate to accommodate peak use)

Education, Public Administration, Health Care, and Other Institutions

17

Education, Public Administration, Health Care, and Other Institutions, except those listed below

See Special Regulations

Parking: The number of spaces must be adequate to accommodate the peak customer and employee shift, demonstrated by a parking study or other study submitted by the applicant and approved by the Code Administrator.

18

Day Care Center

Provisions for day care centers include:

A. Shall provide parking as follows: Employee on maximum shift (1.0, 1.0). 

B. Play equipment shall be located no less than 10 feet from any property line

C. Parking: The number of spaces must be adequate to accommodate the peak shift as determined by the Code Administrator after considering the probable number of employees, etc.

19

Religious Institutions

1,000 sq ft gfa (10.0, 10.0) or 1/5 fixed seats

A. A seat is one fixed seat or 18 inches on a pew or bench, or seven square feet in the general assembly area, including aisle space, but excluding stage, podium, lobby, and space for musical instruments. 

B. A traffic mitigation plan is required. The plan shall address traffic control; parking management, including mitigation of overflow parking into adjoining residential areas; and traffic movement to the arterial street system.

20

Funeral Homes and Services

Excludes crematoriums.

Other

21

Vending Carts, Kiosks

A. Shall not locate in required parking, landscaping, or drive aisle area, or any area that would impede emergency access

B. Shall not reduce or interfere with functional use of walkway or plaza to below standards of Americans with Disabilities Act. 

C. Structures shall be secured to prevent tipping and endangering public safety

D. Maximum size is six feet wide by ten feet long. 

E. Administrative design review required for structures.

22

Automobile Parking Facilities

Surface parking lots are prohibited.

Notes:

1Permanent supportive housing, as defined under RCW 36.70A.030, and transitional housing, as defined under RCW Chapter 84.36, are allowed in all land use districts where residential dwellings and/or hotel uses are allowed, subject to RZC 21.57.010,Permanent Supportive Housing, Transitional Housing, and Emergency Housing.

2Emergency housing, as defined under RCW 36.70A.030, and emergency shelter, as defined under RCW 36.70A.030, are allowed in all land use districts where hotel uses are allowed. Emergency housing is subject to RZC 21.57.010, Permanent Supportive Housing, Transitional Housing, and Emergency Housing. Emergency shelter is subject to RZC 21.57.020, Emergency Shelter.

(Ord. 2642; Ord. 2652; Ord. 2679; Ord. 2709; Ord. 2803; Ord. 2836; Ord. 2919; Ord. 2978; Ord. 3074)

Effective on: 2/12/2022