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18A.50.420 Landscaping Standards.
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A. General Standards.

1. Where any structure is enlarged or expanded, then landscaping shall be provided for the area of said expansion or enlargement in accordance with LMC 18A.50.400, Landscaping. A change in use in an existing structure may require additional landscaping as set forth in this section.

2. If the development proposal is a structure remodel or exterior tenant improvement, and the parking area is not reconfigured or expanded, the following standards apply:

a. Perimeter landscaping and parking area landscaping may be required pursuant to 18A.50.200, Community Design.

b. Building and/or entry landscaping may be required pursuant to 18A.50.200, Community Design.

3. If the development proposal is a structure remodel or exterior tenant improvement, and the parking area is reconfigured or expanded, the following standards apply:

a. Perimeter landscaping is required pursuant to LMC 18A.50.425 and 18A.50.430, Landscaping Regulations by Zoning Districts.

b. Parking area landscaping is required pursuant to LMC 18A.50.425(A)(4), Landscaping Types.

c. Building and/or entry landscaping may be required pursuant to 18A.50.200, Community Design.

4. If the development proposal is for a new structure, the following standards shall apply:

a. Perimeter landscaping is required pursuant to LMC 18A.50.425 and 18A.50.430.

b. Parking area landscaping is required pursuant to LMC 18A.50.425(A)(4), Landscaping Types.

c. Building and/or entry landscaping may be required pursuant to 18A.50.200, Community Design.

5. All parking areas of over 20,000 square feet shall have a minimum of 10 percent of the total parking area, drive aisles, maneuvering area and loading space landscaped as a means to reduce the barren appearance of the lot and to reduce the amount of stormwater runoff. Required perimeter landscaping adjacent to property lines shall not be calculated as accounting for a portion of the 10 percent figure.

6. All ingress or egress driveways, internal circulation routes and easements which provide access corridors to the subject lot, and which are not adjacent to a public right-of-way, shall be landscaped to the same standard as a public right-of-way.

7. All outside storage areas shall be screened by fencing and landscaping a minimum of five feet in depth unless it is determined by development plan review that such screening is not necessary because stored materials are not visually obtrusive.

8. All trash containers shall be screened from abutting properties and streets by a 100 percent sight-obscuring fence or wall and appropriate landscaping.

9. Landscaping shall be placed outside of fences unless it is determined by the Community Development Department that such arrangement would be detrimental to the stated purpose of this chapter.

10. All portions of a lot not devoted to a building, future buildings, parking, storage or accessory uses shall be landscaped in a manner appropriate to the stated purpose of this chapter. Type III landscaping is the minimum landscaping required if no other landscaping standards apply.

11. All required landscaping areas shall extend to the curb line or the property line, whichever is greater.

12. All required landscaping areas shall be surrounded by concrete curbing and shall contain soil of sufficient quantity and quality to allow landscaping plantings to flourish. Landscaping areas shall not be placed on top of any impervious surface.

13. Required landscaping for those areas that are inappropriate to landscape due to the existence of rail lines or other features, shall be relocated in the following manner and order:

a. At the entry of the building.

b. To another lot line.

c. To an equal-sized area in another portion of the lot.

d. To an area as determined by the Community Development Director upon review with the owner or developer.

e. The applicant shall post money into the City Street Tree Fund proportionate to the landscaping that cannot be relocated. The cost of the landscaping shall be based on a proportionate square foot cost of other areas on the lot that have been landscaped to a similar standard.

14. The perimeter of parking lots that abut residential zones or uses shall be landscaped with Type I landscaping and a solid wood or equivalent fence. Substitute fencing may be allowed at the discretion of the Community Development Director to address public safety concerns. The term “adjacent residential property,” for purposes of this section, shall mean abutting property and lots immediately adjacent to abutting property.

15. Landscaping shall not conflict with the safety of those using adjacent sidewalks or with traffic safety.

16. The perimeter landscape strip of all property abutting Interstate 5 or abutting railroad right-of-way adjacent to Interstate 5 shall be increased to a minimum depth of 15 feet along the highway or railroad right-of-way frontage, unless a larger area is otherwise required by LMC 18A.50.425, Landscaping Types.

17. Quantity, arrangement and types of plants installed shall be appropriate to the size of the required landscape area and purpose of planting area described in LMC 18A.50.425, Landscaping Types.

18. Landscape plans shall include, where feasible, a diversity of native plant species which promote native wildlife habitat.

19. Landscaping buffers shall be required adjacent to any above ground stormwater facilities of no less than five feet in width.

20. Landscape areas adjacent to required biofiltration systems that do not exceed one to three (1:3) slope may be counted toward a portion of any required landscaping areas if they meet the following:

a. The configuration and plant species of landscape areas on a site shall be designed so as to not disrupt the functions of stormwater systems, and plant species and location are subject to approval of the City Engineer and Community Development Director.

21. Where the width of a required landscape strip exceeds the setback requirement for any structure subject to this section, the setback shall be increased to provide the full width of the landscape strip, except where otherwise permitted for commercial buildings under LMC 18A.50.200, Community Design.

22. Use of manmade nonvegetative material such as plastic or artificial plants or grass is prohibited as substitute for the required landscaping. Nonvegetative material is not a substitute for plant material. Nonporous weed barriers are prohibited in landscaped areas. Bark, mulch, rock or other nonvegetative material shall only be used in conjunction with landscaping to assist vegetative growth and maintenance or to visually complement plant material.

23. Required landscape areas shall be provided with adequate drainage.

24. All trees shall be double staked for the first two years.

25. Slopes shall not exceed a one to three (1:3) ratio (height to width from center), in order to decrease erosion potential and assist in ease of maintenance.

B. Plant Standards. Where new landscaping is required, the following plant standards apply:

1. Deciduous Tree. A minimum three-inch diameter at six inches above grade at the time of planting.

2. Evergreen Tree. A minimum six feet in height above grade at the time of planting.

3. Low Shrub. Plants shall be a minimum of one to two feet in height at the time of planting with approximately a one- or two-gallon pot or ball-and-burlap.

4. Medium Shrub. Plants shall be a minimum of two to three feet in height at the time of planting with approximately a three- to five-gallon pot or ball-and-burlap.

5. Ornamental Tree. A minimum of one-inch diameter for deciduous; a minimum of two feet tall for evergreens. Ornamental trees may count as medium shrubs, but do not count for trees otherwise required.

6. Vegetative Groundcover. Grass sod, or spreading groundcover in four-inch pots with a maximum spacing of nine inches, or one-gallon pots with a maximum spacing of 18 inches and of sufficient size, spacing and species as to spread to form a solid cover of the planting area within two years from the time of planting.

7. Drought Tolerant Plants. The use of native and drought tolerant, low water use plants shall be incorporated into landscape design plans.

C. Irrigation Standards. The intent of this standard is to ensure that plants will survive the critical establishment period when they are most vulnerable to lack of watering and to survive periods of extended drought once they are established.

1. Irrigation systems shall be incorporated into a landscaping area and the applicant shall prepare a water use and conservation plan for review and approval by the City Engineer and Community Development Director.

2. The applicant shall choose one of the following options to provide all landscaped areas with an irrigation method:

a. A permanent underground irrigation method with an automatic controller plus an overriding rain switch. All landscape that is placed in median strips in the middle of street rights-of-ways shall be irrigated with underground automated irrigation systems.

b. An irrigation method which provides sufficient water to ensure that the plants will become established. The method shall be required to be permanent unless the plant material selected is classified as drought tolerant and a permanent irrigation system is determined to be unnecessary by the Community Development Department, in which case irrigation standards shall be required only during the first growing season following installation. Even if drought tolerant plants are used in the landscape design, there must be an identified method to easily provide water to the plants in the case of a drought. Any automatic/mechanical system designed under this option shall be fitted with an overriding rain switch. [Ord. 651 § 23, 2016; Ord. 317 § 8, 2003; Ord. 264 § 1, 2001.]

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