Snohomish County adopts ordinance discouraging incompatible development near airports

DATED: JUNE 9, 2015

Snohomish County adopts ordinance discouraging incompatible development near airports

Snohomish County celebrated a victory for aviation on May 6, when the County Council adopted Amended Ordinance No. 15-025, establishing new regulations for airports and land use compatibility. 

Particularly the ordinance protects airports and surrounding communities from incompatible development in the following ways:

  • Establishes a new chapter in the county’s development code, Chapter 30.32E Airport Compatibility.
  • Identifies an airport influence area and establishes disclosure notice on title for new development activities within that area.
  • Identifies an airport compatibility area where special review requirements apply.
  • Establishes a height review process that utilizes the FAA’s Form 7460 review within the airport compatibility area.
  • Establishes a special compatibility review process for 11 types of land uses and three types of residential development within that airport compatibility area.
  • Includes the opportunity for airport managers to provide input at various stages of development review within the airport compatibility area.
  • Encourages applicants to refer to FAA and WSDOT guidance related to airport compatibility.

“Incompatible development is a serious challenge to both airport and airport neighbors,” said Washington State Aviation Alliance President Kandace Harvey. “We couldn’t be more thrilled that the Snohomish County Council has taken these steps to strengthen airports and land use compatibility regulations.”
Organizations that contributed to the development of this ordinance include:

  • Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association
  • Arlington Municipal Airport
  • City of Arlington, Planning Staff
  • City of Monroe, Planning Staff
  • Darrington Municipal Airport
  • Federal Aviation Administration
  • First Air Field
  • Harvey Field
  • Master Builders Association of King and Snohomish Counties
  • Monroe Chamber of Commerce
  • Mukilteo Chamber of Commerce
  • Mukilteo School District
  • Paine Field
  • Paine Field Community Council
  • Port of Everett
  • Professional Consultants of Snohomish County
  • Puget Sound Regional Council
  • Sky Harbor Airport
  • Sky Harbor Chamber of Commerce
  • Snohomish Chamber of Commerce
  • Snohomish County Planning Advisory Committee
  • Stillaguamish Tribe
  • Tulalip Tribe
  • Washington Airport Management Association
  • Washington Community Airports Association
  • Washington Pilots Association
  • WSDOT Aviation Division