Comments Sought on Black Diamond Shoreline Program (USA)

Comments Sought on Black Diamond Shoreline Program

The Washington Department of Ecology (Ecology) is seeking public comment on Black Diamond’s recently updated shoreline master program.

The proposed update will guide construction and development along a total of 6.6 miles of shoreline on Lake Sawyer and Covington Creek in Black Diamond. It combines local plans for future development and preservation with new development ordinances and related permitting requirements.

Black Diamond’s shoreline program is locally tailored to minimize environmental damage to shoreline areas, reserve appropriate areas for water-oriented uses, and protect the public’s right to public lands and waters.

Under Washington’s 1972 voter-approved Shoreline Management Act, Ecology must review and approve Black Diamond’s proposed shoreline program before it takes effect. More than 200 cities and counties statewide are updating or crafting their master programs.

Comments on Black Diamond’s proposed shoreline program will be accepted through Dec. 21, 2012.

Black Diamond’s proposed updated master program:

– Integrates the city’s shoreline regulations with its growth management, planning and zoning, floodplain management and critical areas ordinances as part of a unified development code. Establishes protective buffers of 40 to 100 feet, with the flexibility to reduce buffers based on individual property circumstances.

– Limits the length of new residential docks and piers to the minimum necessary, up to 60 feet.

– Encourages soft-bank erosion control methods and limits construction of new shoreline armoring.

– Includes a restoration plan showing where and how voluntary improvements in water and upland areas can enhance the local shoreline environment.

Washington’s cities and counties with regulated shorelines must update their programs by December 2014.

[mappress]

Press Release, November 9, 2012

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