Changes to Design Review Coming Soon

On July 1, many of the changes to the Design Review program that were adopted as part of Ordinance No. 125429 in October 2017 will go into effect. The changes include:

  • New requirements for early community outreach for all projects going through Design Review
  • Updates to the thresholds that determine which projects are required to go through Design Review


Read a summary of the changes.

Updates on Director’s Rule

We are currently working on updating and finalizing the joint Director’s Rule for Early Community Outreach, which we developed with Department of Neighborhoods (DON) and published for public review and comment from May 4 to May 21. We hope to have the final version of the rule published within the next week.

Information Sessions

On June 20, SDCI and DON will be hosting an information session for developers interested in learning more about the new requirements for early community outreach.

Wednesday, June 20
4:00 – 5:00 p.m.
Seattle Municipal Tower
700 5th Avenue, 19th Floor

Join us for a presentation and Q&A with staff to learn about:

  • The requirements for your early community outreach plan
  • How to document your outreach so you can move on to early design guidance (EDG)
  • How the early community outreach timing lines up with the design review process
  • Resources we’ve been developing to prepare for the July 1 rollout


No need to RSVP, just show up!

Can’t make it? We will also be hosting two Reddit “Ask Me Anything” sessions online:

  • July 10
    12:00 – 1:00 p.m.
  • August 14
    8:00 – 9:00 a.m.


Save the date! Find us on Reddit’s AMA board day-of, or under DON’s username SEA_Neighborhoods.


For more information, please visit SDCI’s project webpage, read Ordinance No. 125429, or visit the City Clerk’s webpage for Council Bill 119057.



For questions about how the new early outreach requirements or thresholds changes may impact a specific development project, please contact:

Lisa Rutzick, SDCI
(206) 386-9049

For questions about the information sessions or general questions about the new early outreach requirements, you may also contact:

Christina Ghan, SDCI
(206) 233-3749

Susie Philipsen, DON
(206) 733-9283

New Seattle Electrical Code

City Council approved the new Seattle Electrical Code on September 18, 2017. The new code became effective on October 21, 2017. All projects submitted to SDCI on or after October 21 must meet the new Electrical Code standards. If your electrical permit is associated with a building permit, you must follow the electrical code that was effective when you applied for the building permit.

Key changes in the electrical code include:

  • An increase for the solar system review requirement from a threshold of 7 kw to 7.7 kw
  • Requirements for electrical vehicle charging in new building
  • Requirements to remove all abandoned knob and tube wiring


You can find an overview of the most significant changes by reading our 2017 Seattle Electrical Code Proposed Changes document posted on our Electrical Code webpage.  Our webpage also includes the 2017 Seattle Electrical Code replacement pages and quick reference.

If you have questions about the new electrical code, contact:

Ben Scott
(206) 684-5383

New Boiler Code

SDCI is updating Seattle’s Boiler Code, which hasn’t been updated since 2005. The new Boiler Code will be effective July 31, 2017. Any application you submit on or after this date must meet the new requirements. The new code includes several changes, including:

  • A new definition for cooking kettles
  • Separate sections for new construction and existing installation requirements
  • Updated enforcement sections that are similar to those found in Seattle’s other construction codes
  • Alignment of the Seattle Boiler Code requirements with the State of Washington Boiler Code


Copies of the new 2017 Seattle Boiler Code ordinance are available on our Boiler & Pressure Vessel Code website. We expect to post easy-to-read electric copy of the new code next month.

For more information, please contact:

Larry Leet
Chief Pressure Systems Inspector
(206) 684-8459