2016 Update to Residential Development Standards
What's Happening Now
The City of Mercer Island is considering changes to the rules for building and remodeling homes throughout the island. The Planning Commission is proposing several changes, including:
|Residential Design Standards Public Hearing|
The Planning Commission invites your input on the purposed changes at the upcoming Public Hearing on Wednesday, April 5, 2017 at 6:00 pm at the Mercer Island Community & Event Center.
- New limits on house size and bulk
- Wider side setbacks between homes
- More tree protection
- Reduced construction hours.
Click here to fill out an online comment form
Click here to read comments received to-date
Or send comment Emails to: firstname.lastname@example.org
The Planning Commission is in the process of reviewing the Residential Development Standards, using a policy based review approach described here. Using this approach, the City has developed the following anticipated schedule for review of the Residential Development Standards by individual topics.
Planning Commission Meeting Schedule
- October 26, 2016 (Special Meeting) – Community Kickoff Meeting at MICEC (see below)
- November 2, 2016 – Initial review of the standards related to Building Design
- November 16, 2016 – Initial review of the standards related to single family Site Design and Subdivision
- November 30, 2016 (Special Meeting) – Planning Commission is scheduled to address other items (appeals). No review of Residential Development Standards is anticipated on this night
- December 7, 2016 – Initial review of the standards related to Trees
- December 12, 2016 (Special Meeting) – Initial review of the standards related to the Process associated with development review
Check the Planning Commission Review tab to link to relevant agendas and minutes
- January 4, 2017- Second review of Building Design
- January 11, 2017 - Community Meeting (see below)
- January 18, 2017- Trees and Site Design second review
- February 1, 2017- Subdivision and Process second review
- February 15, 2017- Planning Commission is scheduled to address other items (appeals). No review of Residential Development Standards is anticipated on this night.
- February 25, 2017 - Community Meeting (see below) at West Mercer Elementary
- March 1, 2017- Planning Commission is schedule to address other items (appeals). No review of Residnetial Development Standards is anticipated on this night.
- March 15, 2017- Review of complied regulations (start of Final Review)
- March 29, 2017 (Special Meeting)- Review of Compiled Regulations
- April 5, 2017- RESCHEDULED Public Hearing (see below) at MICEC
- April 19, 2017- Delibration and Recommendation of Regulations
Upcoming Community Meetings include:
- April 5, 2017- Mercer Island Community & Event Center (MICEC)
February 25, 2017 9:30 am - 12:00 pm
The Planning Commission hosted a Community Meeting on February 25, 2017 from 9:30 am - 12:00 pm at West Mercer Elemantary. The City is updating the rules for building and remodeling homes throughout Mercer Island, potentially including things like building height, size and bulk, yard size, paving and tree protection. The Planning Commission has been meeting since November to review concepts and will make a recommendation to the City Council this spring.
At the meeting the Planning Commission hosted an Open House for community members to review concepts. There was also a presentation by staff giving an overview of the concepts and a question and answer session with the Planning Commission.
Click on the links below to download the meeting agenda and materials presented at the meeting:
January 11, 2017 6:00 - 8:45 pm
The Planning Commission hosted a Community Meeting on January 11, 2017 from 6:00-8:45 pm at the Mercer Island Community & Event Center. The City is updating the rules for building and remodeling homes throughout Mercer Island, potentially including things like building height, size and bulk, yard size, paving and tree protections. The Planning Commission is meeting to review concepts and make a recommendation on residential issues to the City Council in Spring 2017.
The Planning Commission presented preliminary concepts for discussion and input. Participants engaged in small group discussions about the concepts, providing feedback and additional ideas to the Commission.
Click on links below to download the meeting agenda and materials presented at the meeting:
Discussion Questions with Graphics
October 26, 2016 6:30-8:30 pm
The Planning Commission hosted a Community Kick Off Meeting on October 26, 2016 from 6:30-8:30pm at the Mercer Island Community and Event Center. This was an opportunity to learn more about the residential development standards, the planned update process and how to get involved.
Download meeting flyer (8.5 x 14") or event agenda
City staff and the Planning Commission heard from the community about their concerns around the rapidly changing character of Mercer Island’s neighborhoods, based on the following key questions:
- What do you love about your neighborhood?
- What are some changes you’ve seen in your neighborhood?
- How do you see your neighborhood in the future?
Since early 2016, the City of Mercer Island has heard from residents with a variety of concerns regarding residential development and the rapidly changing character of Mercer Island’s neighborhoods. The City Council has tasked staff and the Planning Commission with reviewing the code, gathering public input and recommending code updates to City Council.
At this time, we ask for feedback from residents on the Scope of Work for the code update. So far, the City Council, Planning Commission and staff have developed the following list of items for additional study, and the City is actively seeking suggestions for additional areas of focus.
Please use the comment form link above to make your suggestions.
- Building height
- Gross floor area
- Lot coverage (impervious surface)
- Minimum setbacks
- Tree retention
- Building pads
- Minimum lot width and depth
- The definition of a single-family residence as related to very large homes (e.g., is a 15,000 sqft house with 12 bedrooms, 12 bathrooms, and 3 kitchens a single-family home or something else?)
- Lot consolidation / Maximum lot area (impact of creating larger lots resulting in larger homes that are different from the existing neighborhood pattern)
- Construction related impacts (hours of operation, parking, length of construction activity, etc.)
- Deviations (process and criteria)
- Large residential accessory structures and uses (e.g., 30-foot-high gazebos, 12-car garages, etc.)
- Enforcement Tools including penalties
- Building Permit Process: Public Notice, Public Input, and Right to Appeal
- Fence Height Deviations
- Time Limit on Validity of Building Permits
- Short Plats - Ensuring that short plat process is not circumvented by, for example, applying for a building permit for one part of a lot with the intention of short platting the property after that permit is granted.
- Other suggestions?