Council Approved the Shoreline Master Program Updates

The final Shoreline Master Program regulations were passed by City Council on April 6, and signed by Mayor Murray on April 10, 2015 (Ordinance 124750). This ordinance completes Seattle’s requirement to comply with the 2003 Shoreline Master Program (SMP) Guidelines established by the Department of Ecology under the Shoreline Management Act (SMA).  The last major update of the City’s SMP was in 1987.

This SMP update, which includes Ordinance 124105 and 124750 will conclude with the Department of Ecology’s final approval, which is expected between May 6, 2015 and May 10, 2015.

  • Ordinance 124105 – the City Council adopted the mandated SMP update in January of 2013. After the adoption of the updated SMP by City Council, the Department of Ecology reviewed the ordinance for compliance with the 2003 Shoreline Master Program Guidelines and issued a Conditional Approval of the SMP on June 5, 2014.
  • Ordinance 124750 – addresses the changes to the SMP as a result of the Conditional Approval.

The SMP regulations will be effective 14 days from the date of the Ecology approval.

The SMA establishes three major policy goals in regulating the Shoreline District relating to use and protection of the exceptionally valuable and vulnerable shoreline resources to:

  1. Provide for water-dependent uses
  2. Protect and restore the shoreline ecological conditions
  3. Provide for public access and public enjoyment of the shorelines

Updated Tips and Director’s Rules that pertain to the SMP will be posted on DPD’s website soon. New code language available on the MuniCode website at the end of May. New paper versions of the shoreline code should be ready in June. Additionally, look for DPD staff out in the field doing outreach about the required verification of floating residences.

For questions regarding the verification of floating residences please contact:

Scarlett Philibosian
(206) 684-5040

For other questions regarding the Shoreline Master Program please contact:

Maggie Glowacki
(206) 386-4036