Shoreline Master Program (SMP)

About the SMP

Budd BayThe Shoreline Master Program (SMP) is a set of local policies and regulations adopted by the City under the State’s Shoreline Management Act that generally applies to all major water bodies and lands within 200 feet of those waters.

On October 1, 2013, the Olympia City Council adopted a Resolution approving the Shoreline Master Program update for submittal to and review by the State Department of Ecology (DOE). In the Resolution, the Council also stated its intent to adopt the Shoreline Master Program after review by DOE.

Department of Ecology Review Process

Under Washington's 1972 voter-approved Shoreline Management Act, Ecology must review and approve Olympia's proposed shoreline program before the program takes effect. Taking public comments into consideration, Ecology may approve the proposed shoreline program as written, reject it, or identify specific modification to meet the Shoreline Management Act and applicable state regulations.

Learn more about Ecology's next steps, view related documents and find contact information on their Olympia Shoreline Master Program web page.

SMP Update Background - Our Public Process

City Council held a public hearing on the proposed amendments to the SMP in January 2013. It was followed by a series of informational public meetings. Below you will find the materials provided along with public feedback we received thoughout the process.

Public Comments & Questions

This Comments Summary Table has been compiled to provide a quick reference to the major points made by the individuals and organizations who have commented on the Draft Shoreline Master Program (SMP). The City received a total of 102 individual comments on the SMP. Including attachments, the comments record totals nearly 700 pages.

Each comment has been reviewed, and the Comments Summary Table contains several columns that represent subject areas that have generated comments and discussion throughout the development of the SMP. If for example, you are looking to see which comments included something about public access, or sea level rise, simply go to that column on the Table. If there is a checkmark in the box for that subject area, then the commenter had something to say about that subject.

While we have attempted to reflect the key points of every commenter, some comments were too extensive to be neatly summarized. For those more extensive comments, we have mentioned a few key points but have also alerted the reader to the fact that the comments should be reviewed in their entirety to get a complete representation of the comments.

Citizens submitted questions by email in advance of the meetings. View those questions with staff responses

SMP Questions Received by 5:00 p.m. June 14, 2013

The Council held a public hearing on proposed amendments to the Shoreline Master Program on Tuesday, July 9, 2013. The record for public comments was held open until 5:00 p.m., Tuesday, July 23, 2013. 

  • Public Comments - comments received May 28 through 5:00 p.m., July 23, 2013 
  • Public Comments - comments received post-5:00 p.m. record closure February 5 through May 27, 2013

View public comments submitted to Council by record closure 5:00 p.m., Tuesday, February 5, 2013, regarding the Shoreline Master Program:

From Individuals

From Organizations

Large submittal from the Olympia Yacht Club, West Bay Marina Associates, Stormans Inc., and Thurston County Chamber of Commerce:

Comments submitted for the November 15, 2010 Planning Commission Public Hearing listed the month in which the comments were received. 

Comments Submitted for the 11/15/2010 Planning Commission Public Hearing.

Agenda, Staff Reports, and Minutes

View the staff report, resolution, and other attachments included with the Council's October 1, 2013 agenda.

Other Documents/Resources

The Cumulative Impacts Assessment report assesses the cumulative impacts of development in the shoreline that would result from development and activities over time under the provisions contained in the Draft Shoreline Master Program dated January 22, 2013.

The Cumulative Impacts Assessment and City Council discussions often refer to "reaches" of the shoreline. These reaches are segments of the shoreline that were first identified in the Inventory and Characterization Report, and which have been further divided for discussion purposes.

The purpose of the Downtown Olympia 3D Visualization project is to develop a platform for visualizing current and proposed policy and land use scenarios, with a particular interest in view analysis and ground-level urban form experience. Mithun was contracted by the City of Olympia to build a 3D model from existing City data to be used in the future as supplemental information to help inform planning and policy decisions. The intent of the effort is to focus on the downtown sub-area and selected shoreline areas. The model includes the existing conditions, and potential scenarios based on current zoning code. It is intended to be used by City staff to help visualize various regulations and policies. The project deliverables are not intended to suggest urban design or policy solutions or proposals; however, the 3D model provides a robust platform for the City to conduct design exercises, studies, and analysis in the future.