Residential Moratorium

  1. Message from Mayor Kuhn

  2. Public Outreach Strategy

    During the month of April the Planning Department team will be conducting public outreach to help prioritize issues and discover code changes the City might make related to residential growth. Read on...
  3. Planning & Building Committee Next Steps

    At the March 26th Public Hearing, Council directed the Planning and Building Committee to review comments received for potential amendments to the moratorium. The committee will meet next on Monday April 2nd at 5:30 PM. Read on...
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Six-month Temporary Moratorium on New Residential Development

At their February 12th, 2018 meeting, the City Council passed Ordinance 1383  declaring an immediate six-month moratorium on the acceptance of certain residential development applications.  A public hearing on the ordinance occurred on March 26th. The Council asked the Planning and Building Committee to review comments and consider amendments to the moratorium. The committee met on April 2nd and recommended two amendments that the Council will consider at their April 23rd Council meeting.  In addition, the Council will review several potential zoning code changes to address residential density and development.

Reason for the Moratorium:
The City Council noted that significant growth and development in the City is the cause of widespread concern of City residents expressed in the election of mayor and councilmembers in the 2017 election. In the last five years, the city population has risen by 30% and there are currently 1,200 dwelling units in the permit pipeline.  The Council has identified six potential code amendments that could address this residential growth, as shown on Exhibit A of the ordinance.

The council expressed concern that the rapid pace of residential development will continue and that there is the strong potential for additional residential development permits to be filed and become vested before the City staff, Planning Commission, and City Council can perform the study, public outreach and participation, and decision-making necessary to adopt any of those amendments.  

The Council felt that the vesting of additional residential land use permit applications prior to the completion of the desired study, public outreach and participation, and decision-making would be detrimental to the public health, safety and welfare.

Effect of Moratorium:
The specific limitations of and exception to the moratorium can be found in Sections 3 and Sections 4 of Ord. 1383. Below is a general summary of the effect.

For no longer than six months, unless the moratorium is extended, no new planning, civil, and building permit applications for residential development will be accepted. This includes preliminary plats, preliminary short plats, and siteplan review for residential developments. The moratorium includes the shoreline area.

Recognizing vested rights and valid approvals, the City will accept final plats, final PRDs, final short plats, civil permits, and building permits for projects related to approved development agreements, and related to full, complete, and valid applications for a preliminary plat or preliminary short plat that were submitted prior to February 12th, 2018.

The City will also continue to accept:

  • Permits for one single-family home on an existing recorded lot.
  • Permits for  repair, restoration, refurbishment, replacement and remodels of existing residential dwellings. 
  • Permits for additions to single-family homes 
  • Permits for accessory uses and structures 
  • Boundary line adjustments

The moratorium does not apply to nonresidential developments.

Upcoming Meetings

At the April 23rd City Council meeting, the Council will consider two items related to the moratorium:

  1.  An ordinance to amend the moratorium to allow all vested project to receive building permits and for all pipeline project to receive building permits.
  2. Directing staff to begin work on several specific zoning code amendment related to residential density and development.

The council meeting packet with detailed information on these two items can be found here.

Past Meetings

  • For the audio recording of the Mayor’s Advisory Committee on the moratorium, click here.
  •  For review of the April 2nd Planning and Building Committee meeting packet, audio recording, and minutes, click here
  • For review of March 26th, 2018 City Council meeting, the packet, audio recording, and minutes, click here.
  • For review of the March 5th, 2018 Planning & Building Committee meeting, the packet, audio recording, and minutes, click here.
  • For review of the February 12th, 2018 City Council meeting, the packet, audio recording, and minutes, click here.
  • For review of the February 5th,2018 City Council work-study session on addressing residential growth, the packet, audio recording, and minutes, click here.
  • For review of the January 31,2018 City Council / Staff Retreat,
    click here.

Background and Supporting Documents

Message from your Mayor Kit Kuhn- April 12th, 2018

Council Bill for Residential Moratorium- March 26th, 2018 Public Hearing

Council Bill for Planning Assistance Services Contract- March 26th, 2018 Public Hearing

Initial work plan memo to Planning & Building Committee- March 5th, 2018.

Ordinance 1383– Adopted and effective February 12th, 2018
Addressing Growth Memo–February 5th, 2018 Council Work-study Session

Comments and Questions
Public Participation is encouraged through the moratorium and code development process.  Check or subscribe to this page for updates, draft documents, and meeting notices through Notify Me. You may also join the Planning Department’s Weekly Email Notice to receive timely updates by emailing Cindy Andrews or texting “GHPLANNING” to 22828

For more information on how the moratorium may impact your project, stop by the Planning Department at the Civic Center, call 253-851-6170, or email





  1. Mon Apr. 23

  2. Mon May 14

  3. Tue May 29

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