Council to Hold Hearing on 'Non-Conforming' Housing Density

The Kirkland City Council will take testimony Jan. 2 on a proposed ordinance allowing older multifamily residential complexes to grandfather in more liberal density limits than currently allowed.


The Kirkland City Council will hold a public hearing on Jan. 2 on a proposed ordinance allowing the remodeling or redevelopment of multifamily structures with nonconforming density, including the expansion of those structures without bringing the density into conformance.

On November 7, 2012, the Kirkland City Council reviewed zoning code amendments recommended by the Planning Commission pertaining to nonconforming density. The Council directed an ordinance to be prepared for consideration at a future meeting. Consideration of the ordinance is scheduled for January 2 at 7:30 p.m. in the City Hall Council Chamber, 123 5th Avenue.

Planning Director Eric Shields said the ordinance would allow owners of older multifamily dwellings built when density limits were more liberal to more easily grandfather in those limits in areas where the limits are now more restrictive. For example, owners of a 20-unit condominium complex built when that density was allowed would be allowed to remodel with 20 units in areas where zoning currently allows less than 20.

That will smooth the permitting process for those owners when they want to remodel or rebuild the dwellings.

The regulations specify under what circumstances a multifamily building with more dwelling units than allowed under the current zoning must be brought into conformance.

The City Council may take action on the proposal by ordinance, immediately after the public hearing.

Written comments may be submitted to the City Council, 123 5th Avenue, Kirkland WA 98033-6189 up to and during the City Council hearing on January 2. You are also welcome to offer your testimony at the hearing.

Please contact Eric Shields, AICP, Planning Director City of Kirkland Planning Department at (425)-587-3226 or eshields@kirklandwa.gov. More information is also available a t Miscellaneous Code Amendments 2012.

Please follow this link to get more information on this project:



Much of the information for this story came from a city of Kirkland news release.


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