Sammamish Municipal Code Development Regulation Text Amendment
Applicants: Mary Wictor and Mary Johnson
The applicants request the following changes to the existing development regulations:
Additionally, the applicants request that the following areas be addressed through modifications or additions to the development regulations:
Tree & Vegetation Retention
Why the Change is Needed:
Transfer of Development Rights (TDRs)
TDRs are currently allowed from erosion areas but are needed more widely particularly in areas dealing with landslides and other geo-hazards.
Traffic concerns are not holding back building single-family homes on existing lots. Building is occurring more densely than the zoning allows, especially in existing lots before 1970, and is happening on lots that should not be buildable. Adding a minimum lot size will prevent this and ensure that small, irregular, and fragmented lots are not buildable. West sloping areas have extremely challenging topography with very steep slopes. Clearing and grading of slopes (cuts, excavations, fills) disturbs land and soils, and drainage creating risks of landslides. Often these lots include one or more critical area as well. The health and safety of the community must be protected, and risks of loss of life and/or property must be avoided. Landslides should be formally documented/ tracked through a system available to the public. This way they can make informed decisions and assess risks when buying a home, especially in the steeped sloped Inglewood Hill area.
Functions and values of ecosystems must be protected before they are gone. Additionally, forests, tree canopies, tree variety, understory, and vegetation are essential to protect. Reasonable Use Exemptions (RUEs) are being made for individual homes that are next to other RUEs are or for properties in the Inglewood Hill neighborhood that have numerous critical area overlays. This piecemeal development is degrading wildlife corridors and pollinator habitat and conflicts with Comprehensive Plan Policy EC.2.6 (Avoid potential impacts to life and property by strictly limiting land disturbance and development in landslide hazard, steep slopes, and Erosion Hazard Near Sensitive Water Body Overlay).
Tree retention requirements vary by geographic area and permit type, with replacement trees not always required. During development, little care is given to plants and tree roots and they get degraded. Developers need to know that the entire property is in their care during development, not just the house and its footprint.