Sammamish Municipal Code Development Regulation Text Amendment
Applicants: Mary Wictor and Mark Cross
Environmentally Critical Areas
Apply the Native Growth Protection Easement, as currently done for subdivisions, to single family residences on existing lots for wetlands and wetland boundaries as well as tree retention areas. Also have permanent limits on disturbance of, or additions to, impervious surfaces in steep slope and/or geological hazard areas without the requirement of additional permitting and review.
Have maintenance and inspection requirements and operation manuals, when appropriate for storm drainage systems, be recorded consistent with requirements placed on subdivisions.
Place permanent limits on the original permits regarding tree retention and limits on development in critical areas and have them recorded as is the case with new subdivisions.
Amend 21A.50.070(2) to establish a clear parameter around what is considered reasonable by assignment of a minimum square footage footprint entitlement per zone.
SMC 21A.50.190(1) - Delete “that are one acre or greater in size” and consider adding “and all erosion hazard areas and buffers”.
SMC 21A.15.785 - Add “Native Growth Protection Easements (NGPEs). Areas or easements granted to the County or a City for the protection of native vegetation within a “sensitive area” or its associated buffer, also known as “critical areas” and/or any associated buffer(s).”
SMC 21A.15.1065 - Add “Sensitive Areas and any associated buffers were first defined by King County due to the Growth Management act in 1990. Before December 1990, these areas were called Native Growth Protection Easements (NGPEs). As of January 2005, “sensitive area” was replaced with “critical area”. All sensitive areas are environmentally critical areas.”
Add a buffer/protection to steep slopes from the sides or adjacent areas.
Increase tree retention percentage in erosion hazard areas.
WHY THE CHANGE IS NEEDED:
Setting restrictions must be done. It is also important to alert members of the public and potential buyers to the development limitations of critical areas.
Critical area tract protections should not exclude landslide hazard areas that are smaller than one acre. Limiting use of these protections could put neighbors, occupants, and environment at risk.
Native Growth Protection Easements have existed prior to incorporation, and still exist within the City, and should be defined within the SMC.
The word “sensitive” appears 24 times in the SMC, however it is no longer defined since O2005-193/O2003-132 renamed “sensitive area” as environmentally “critical areas”. References to “sensitive area” remain in the SMC and need clarification/definition to direct to environmentally critical areas.
Increased protections are needed around steep slopes to protect the environment and as well as property owners.