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Thurston County, Washington

Community Planning and Economic Development

If you own waterfront property in unincorporated Thurston County, the Current SMP, adopted in 1990 spells out building rules, allowable land uses and zoning. An SMP Code Update Project is now underway.


Current SMP 

The current shoreline rules and policies for unincorporated Thurston County apply to marine shorelines (Puget Sound), rivers with a flow greater than 20 cubic feet per second, lakes larger than 20 acres, upland areas within 200 feet of these water bodies, and the floodplains and wetlands associated with these shorelines.

New SMP (Code Update Project now underway)

Washington's Department of Ecology requires counties to update their shoreline building and development regulations from time to time. A county SMP update project is nearing completion. Review the SMP documents to learn more about it, or visit the Public Participation page to submit a comment, read comments submitted by other or subscribe to our email list for updates.

Project Timeline for the SMP Code Update

Date Action Links
Happening Now (Q2 2023) The county plans to submit its proposed SMP to Washington's Dept. of Ecology (DOE)  
Q1 2023 BoCC work session & public hearing on February 22, 2023.
Q3-Q4 2022  Board of County Commissioners (BoCC) reviewed the draft SMP.  
Q4 2021 - Q2 2022 Citizen advisory group, the Planning Commission, work sessions to review the SMP and prepare their recommendation for the BoCC.  
Q3 2021 Planning Commission Public Hearing on October 20, 2021.  
Q3-Q4 2021 Public Hearing draft published; outreach and virtual open house.  
2017-2021 Planning Commission review of drafts.  
2009 Update of 1990 SMP begins: research, data, analysis, initial public outreach.