Proposed Code Amendments

The Planning Department is almost always working on at least one project that would amend the city’s development regulations, also known as the Unified Development Code.

School Height Code Amendments Approved

On November 1, 2023, the Everett City Council approved a recommendation on proposed code amendments to allow new and redeveloped kindergarten through 12th grade schools to exceed the underlying maximum building height limit on a case-by-case basis. The determination would be subject to public notice, a public hearing, and consistent with specific criteria for the decision-making body (planning director or hearing examiner, depending on zone). 

The proposal would allow new and remodeled schools to exceed the underlying height limit on the city’s Building & Structure Height map, subject to approval of the project using an administrative use permit or conditional use permit. The proposal also removes a requirement for buildings over twenty-five feet in height to have an additional setback of one foot for each foot over twenty-five feet in height. Housekeeping amendments are included to separate the definitions for kindergarten through 12th grade schools and higher education to align with how the uses are listed in the use matrix and adds a reference to the specific use standards in Everett Municipal Code (EMC) 19.13 to the use matrix so those are not missed by the reader.

Amending Sections:

  • EMC19.04.080 Use definitions, public, institutional, quasi-public, for schools. 
  • EMC19.05.110 Table 5-4, public, institutional, quasi-public use table, add reference note to special regulations EMC19.13.180 for schools. 
  • EMC19.13.180 Schools, delete additional setback requirement for schools located adjacent to residential zones and add a provision to allow additional height of the height map when considered under an administrative use or conditional use permit. 


Home Occupation Code Amendments

The city council held meetings in August and September 2021 to consider code amendments on the home occupation regulations. Due to thoughtful questions from the council and citizen concerns, the public hearing was referred back to staff for additional work.


The city's Planning Commission passed a resolution recommending potential amendments on a proposed ordinance regarding home occupation regulations on July 20, 2021.  Home occupations are small business activities conducted within a residence, by the resident, subordinate to the residential use. Goals of the updated regulations were to broaden opportunities for home-based entrepreneurs and clarify and simplify code enforcement activities.