A. Purpose. The purpose of this section is to provide general provisions for the implementation of the RZC.
1. All land uses, activities, construction, clearing, grading, filling, development, intensification, and structural modifications or alterations shall comply with the RZC; and all permits granted for the use, activity, construction, clearing, grading, filling, development, intensification, or structural modifications or alterations.
3. All purchasers or transferees of property shall comply with provisions of the RZC.
C. Violations and Penalties.
2. Any building, structure, development, activity, land use, or division of land, not in conformance with the RZC and not a legal nonconformance, is declared to be unlawful, substandard, and a public nuisance, and is subject to the enforcement and abatement provisions in RMC Chapter 1.14, Enforcement and Penalties.
D. Administrative Interpretations.
1. Purpose. The purpose of this section is to define the responsibilities, rules, procedures, and requirements for the interpretation of the RZC.
2. Interpretation Generally. The provisions of the RZC shall be the minimum requirements adopted for the promotion and protection of the public health, safety, and general welfare. The RZC is not intended to interfere with, abrogate, or annul any easements, covenants, or other agreements between parties, except where the agreements may conflict with the enforcement of the RZC.
4. Conflicts. In the case of conflicts between parts of the RZC or between the RZC and other rules, regulations, resolutions, ordinances or statutes lawfully adopted by other authority having jurisdiction within the City, the most restrictive shall govern. In the case of conflicts between the text, maps, and charts of the RZC, the text shall govern unless otherwise stated.
6. Interpretation of Comprehensive Plan. The interpretation of the Comprehensive Plan is to be made recognizing that the boundaries of the plan categories are not exact but illustrate general relationships and locations.
7. Interpretations of Shoreline Master Program. See RZC 21.68.200.A.
8. Request for Code Interpretation. Any interested person may apply for an interpretation of this code where the code, or its application to specific circumstances, is ambiguous; i.e., where the code is susceptible to two or more reasonable interpretations. Applications for administrative interpretation are processed as Type I reviews and shall be subject the criteria outlined in RZC 21.76.050.D.
E. Moratoriums. Nothing shall prevent the City Council from establishing or extending development moratoriums or interim land use regulations in accordance with Article XI, Section 11 of the Washington State Constitution, or any other applicable authority, and the procedures set forth in RCW 36.70A.390 and 35A.63.220, as those sections exist or may be hereafter amended or superseded.
F. Legal Nonconforming Uses and Structures.
1. Purpose. The City recognizes that land, structures, and uses of land and structures which do not conform to the Redmond Zoning Code can become nuisances, can disrupt the orderly development of the City, and can create unsafe, hazardous, and unhealthful conditions. The City also recognizes that the eventual elimination of existing legal nonconforming uses and structures assists in the implementation of the Comprehensive Plan and benefits the health, safety, and welfare of the community. It is the intent of this chapter to establish regulations and procedures which ensure that the elimination of legal nonconforming uses and structures occurs as fair and orderly as possible and with justice to property owner(s) and business operator(s).
a. The requirements and thresholds established within this section apply only to development standards regulated by the Planning Department.
b. For requirements and thresholds established by the Department of Public Works, see RZC 21.17, Adequate Public Facilities and Undergrounding of Utilities.
c. For requirements and thresholds established by the Fire Department, see RMC Chapter 15.06, Fire Code.
e. Nothing in this chapter shall prohibit the establishment of special regulations for specific nonconforming uses and structures regulated by other sections of the RZC. Such regulations may provide for the retirement or amortization of those specific uses and structures.
3. Legal Nonconforming Lots of Record. Lots of record that do not conform to the dimensional requirements of the RZC may be used as otherwise permitted if they were legally created and were in conformance with the prior zoning code, or were a legal nonconformance under that code.
4. Continuance of Legal Nonconformities. Legal nonconforming uses and structures, as defined in RZC Article VII, Definitions, may continue to be used and maintained in accordance with the provisions of this chapter, except as otherwise provided in RZC 21.68.150.B, Amortization of Off-Premise Signs Within the Shoreline. The use and maintenance is permitted as a result of vested rights obtained through the legal establishment of the nonconforming use or structure.
5. Conditional Uses. Any use which was originally established in a zone by right and has since been reclassified as a conditional use in that zone shall obtain approval through the conditional use review procedure, as is required before the expansion of the use or any structure related to the use.
6. Maintenance. Ordinary and routine maintenance and repair of a legal nonconforming structure and structures containing a nonconforming use, such as painting or plumbing repair, shall be permitted as necessary to ensure the protection of general health, safety, and welfare. All legal nonconforming uses and structures are subject to all applicable property maintenance and substandard building laws.
7. Abandonment of Rights to Nonconformities.
a. All rights to a legal nonconforming use are lost:
i. If the use is changed, or
ii. If the use is abandoned for 12 months, or
b. All rights to nonconforming parking shall be lost if the primary structure on the lot is demolished or rebuilt as defined in RZC Article VII, Definitions. Rights shall not be lost if a building is merely vacated for less than one year.
8. Restoration. Any building containing a nonconforming use or any nonconforming structure may be repaired and restored to its nonconforming state if the need for repairs or restoration shall be the result of fire, explosion, earthquake, imminent public hazard, replacement of underground fuel tanks, vandalism, or other accidental destruction. Such restoration shall comply with the following conditions:
a. Level of Restoration. The damaged use or structure may be repaired to the area and footprint of the previous use or structure. In the case of total destruction or need for underground fuel tank replacement, a new structure may be established to the same area or footprint of the previous use or structure. Alternatively, the structure may be built to a more conforming area or footprint.
b. Time Limit. Building permits for the repair or restoration of the structure must commence within 18 months of the event causing damage to the structure, and the repairs must be diligently pursued until completed.
9. Alteration or Expansion of a Nonconformance.
a. General. The alteration or expansion of a legal nonconforming use or structure is prohibited unless it does not increase the degree of nonconformity, or unless it is specifically permitted through an official action as stated in RZC 21.76.050, Permit Types and Procedures. (See RZC 21.68.200.B, Nonconformances, for nonconforming shoreline structures.) The alteration or expansion of a legal nonconforming use or structure is prohibited for land uses and activities listed in RZC 21.64.050.C, Prohibited Activities in Wellhead Protection Zones, and located in Wellhead Protection Zones 1 and 2.
b. Bringing Nonconforming Structures into Compliance. A legal nonconforming structure shall be brought into full compliance with the RZC when alteration or expansion of the structure takes place, and the following takes place within any three-year period:
i. The gross floor area of the structure is increased by 100 percent or more; or
c. Bringing Nonconforming Landscaping and Pedestrian System Area into Compliance. A nonconforming landscaping or pedestrian system area shall be brought into compliance with RZC 21.32, Landscaping, and RZC 21.10.150, Pedestrian System, in accordance with the following:
i. When the gross floor area of the structure is increased by 100 percent or more; or
ii. The costs stated on all approved building permit applications for the structure equal or exceed 100 percent of the value of the existing structure at the beginning of that three-year period. The percentage (by value) of the required landscaping or pedestrian system, to be installed shall be determined in the same manner as the value of the existing structure.
iii. For the purposes of subsections F.9.c.i and F.9.c.ii of this section, improvements shall not include those improvements required by the City for health and safety reasons, nor ordinary repair and maintenance.
d. Abatement of Public Nuisances. Regardless of any provisions in this section, any nonconformance found to be a public nuisance shall be terminated.
e. Prior Nonconformance. Any nonconformance, which under the prior zoning ordinance was nonconforming and was required to terminate by a certain date, shall continue to be subject to the amortization provisions of the prior zoning ordinance.
f. Illegal Uses or Structures. Illegal uses or structures have no vested rights, and no rights or privileges are conferred upon such uses or structures by this section. Illegal uses and structures shall either be brought into legal conforming status or shall be removed.
G. Legislative Enactments. Nothing in this title or the permit processing procedures shall limit the authority of the City Council to make changes to the City’s Comprehensive Plan, as part of an annual revision process or to make changes to the City’s development regulations.
H. Calculation of Time. Unless otherwise expressly indicated, all times established in RZC are indicated as calendar days, not working days. (Ord. 2652)