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Shoreline management in King County, Washington

Shoreline management in King County, Washington

King County's beauty is no doubt characterized by its bounty of water bodies. King County has nearly 2,000 miles of shoreline along major lakes and rivers and Vashon-Maury Island. These shorelines provide habitat for fish and wildlife, places for public enjoyment and space for wide-ranging waterfront land uses.

Maury Island shoreline

2019 Shoreline Master Program Periodic Review

In fall 2018, King County began a periodic review of its Shoreline Master Program (SMP), as required by the Washington State Shoreline Management Act. This review includes evaluation of King County's current shoreline regulations, and development of recommended amendments. The County intends to adopt the updated program in 2019. See the Public Notice of Intent to Amend .

There will be public outreach and engagement throughout the process, including opportunities to comment on the update and the proposed amendments, as detailed in the Public Participation Plan . A public comment period on the draft amendments was held in November 2018.  The proposal will be refined based on those public comments and transmitted to the King County Council in early 2019 for review, amendment, and adoption in spring 2019. The Council’s process will include additional public comment opportunities, including a formal public hearing on the proposed amendments. Updated information about the periodic review, including schedules and opportunities for involvement will be posted on this page.

Proposed Changes to the SMP

King County's periodic review of its SMP is not a major update of the SMP like the County adopted in 2013. Its purpose is to ensure the SMP is consistent with changes in state law. Proposed changes include:

During this process King County also would like to have a preliminary discussion with residents about how to address sea level rise risks and hazards as part of the upcoming 2020 Comprehensive Plan update. Since this is a topic of interest to many shoreline property owners, it is being included with the SMP outreach.

To learn more about the proposed changes, please explore the following links below:

Existing Shoreline Master Program

On January 14, 2013, the Washington Department of Ecology gave final approval to an update to King County’s Shoreline Master Program. The modified program is in effect as of January 28, 2013. The Shoreline Master Program consists of the following elements:

About the Shoreline Master Program

For more information about the Shoreline Master Program, contact Robin Proebsting, Department of Local Services.