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Residential Shoreline Restoration Example

This single family residence remodel included landscaping the shoreline with a green (or soft) shorelines approach. An existing bulkhead was removed and the upland was regraded. Natural stones and logs were placed to create planting pockets. No work was done below the Ordinary High Water Mark (OHWM).

This example features only local permits. However, consult with state and federal agencies regarding permit requirements.

Local Permits
Application Documents Issued Permits
State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA) Checklist Kirkland Planning and Community Development:
SEPA not required.
Shoreline Master Program (SMP) Application Materials Substantial Development Permit exempt because single family residence and no work in water.
Building Permits Kirkland Building and Construction: Architectural drawings are reviewed and stamped when approved. Review included both building remodel and landscaping.

Lessons Learned

  • Read through the final permits. Understand what you can and cannot do, especially in regards to any future changes to the property.

  • Provide accurate information and detailed (not conceptual) plans to the local jurisdiction, especially with shoreline stabilization projects or when adding a rockery. Accurate and detailed information will ensure the final design meets the new code provisions.

  • Discuss shoreline stabilization versus rocks placed near the shore as a landscape feature with the local jurisdiction. For example, Kirkland’s Shoreline Master Program states that any rockery within 5 feet of the shoreline is considered stabilization.

Thank you to City of Kirkland and Dar Webb Landscape Architects for their assistance with this example. Personal and proprietary information were removed as a courtesy to the applicant.

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