Critical Areas Ordinance and Shoreline Master Program Update

Logo for the Critical Areas Ordinance and Shoreline Master Program Update



In 2018-2019, the City of Mercer Island will be updating its Critical Areas code and Shoreline Master Program. The Critical Areas code is the portion of the City's code that sets standards and requirements for areas like wetlands, landslide hazard areas, watercourses. The Shoreline Master Program contains regulations pertaining to parts of Mercer Island within 200 feet of Lake Washington.



In 2018-2019, the City of Mercer Island will be updating its Critical Areas code and Shoreline Master Program. The Critical Areas code is the portion of the City's code that sets standards and requirements for areas like wetlands, landslide hazard areas, watercourses. The Shoreline Master Program contains regulations pertaining to parts of Mercer Island within 200 feet of Lake Washington.

  • Why are we updating critical areas and shorelines regulations?

    3 months ago

    The City is required by state law to periodically update its Critical Areas Ordinance (CAO) and Shoreline Master Program (SMP). In addition to being a legal requirement, the periodic update provides an opportunity for the community to ensure its critical areas and shoreline codes are up to date with the latest science and in line with the City's current land use policies.

    The process began with the City Council setting a scope of work, providing a framework for what will be covered over the course of this project. The City's Planning Commission has started on that scope of work, first reviewing the state laws pertaining to CAO and SMP updates, and next by reviewing the latest science on managing development in and around critical areas. Through review of scientific information, the City's comprehensive plan and public input, the Planning Commission will draft new code language for review and approval by the City Council.

    The City is required by state law to periodically update its Critical Areas Ordinance (CAO) and Shoreline Master Program (SMP). In addition to being a legal requirement, the periodic update provides an opportunity for the community to ensure its critical areas and shoreline codes are up to date with the latest science and in line with the City's current land use policies.

    The process began with the City Council setting a scope of work, providing a framework for what will be covered over the course of this project. The City's Planning Commission has started on that scope of work, first reviewing the state laws pertaining to CAO and SMP updates, and next by reviewing the latest science on managing development in and around critical areas. Through review of scientific information, the City's comprehensive plan and public input, the Planning Commission will draft new code language for review and approval by the City Council.