Land Use Permits

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Land use permits can be required by the city's Land Use Code to ensure that proposed use and improvement of property meets zoning and other requirements. Essentially, land use permits are not permits for construction; they are approvals for land development, designs and uses for future building construction.

All land use permit applications must be submitted online at MyBuildingPermit, but you can learn about Bellevue land use permits here. The following list is separated by category of need. Depending on the project, multiple approvals across categories may be required.

Request Information or Preliminary Review:

Preapplication Conference

A preapplication conference is a free service that allows you to get early feedback and direction from us on your development concept. It is structured to help you develop a complete formal application and a project design that is consistent with Bellevue’s codes and policies for specific land use permits. The conference occurs at the preliminary-development phase, before you submit a formal application of the proposed project.

Preapplication conferences are required for and limited to:

  • Design Reviews
  • Master Development Plans
  • Planned Unit Developments
  • Preliminary Plats (subdivision)
  • Conditional Uses (including certain Wireless Communication Facilities)
  • Shoreline Conditional Uses

Learn more on our Preapplication Conference page. 

Predevelopment Services

Miscellaneous review and consulting services performed by staff prior to submittal of a permit application. Requests can include permit application guidance, plan review, review of environmental information, answering questions, or providing requested assistance. An applicant may request services from any divisions of Development Services that include: Land Use, Building, Fire, Clearing and Grading, Utilities, Transportation/Right-of-Way. This application is also required for wireless communication facilities proposed under section 6409(a) and for hiring the on-call environmental consultant. (DC) Learn more.

Change a Prior Land Use Approval:

Land Use Approval Amendment

To amend prior conditional use (including shoreline), preliminary plat and planned unit development approvals when an exemption is not allowed by code or the project scope exceeds an exemption. (LI)

Required Documents

Additional Requirements

Land Use Code Exemption

A proposed minor addition, site modification, activity or improvement to a building or site with prior Land Use permit approval where the proposal is exempt from a new Land Use permit and approval amendment. (LJ)

Required Documents

Additional Requirements

Design a Building in a Design District:

Master Development Plan

Review the site development and building envelope components of a phased development proposal to ensure conformance with the Comprehensive Plan, consistency with the design guideline, and compliance with the development standards and requirements. (LP)

Required Documents

Determine and Review Environmental Impacts:

Critical Areas Land Use Permit

Authorization to disturb, develop or otherwise modify a critical area, critical area buffer, or critical area structure setback. (LO)

Required Documents

Additional Requirements

  • Critical Areas Report
  • Drainage Report
  • Electronic Documents on CD
  • Habitat Assessment
  • Vegetation Management Plan

Environmental Impact Statement

Following a Determination of Significance, an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) informs the public and decision makers about proposed actions, alternatives, impacts, and mitigation measures to avoid or minimize adverse impacts. (LE)

To Apply For This Permit:

Please submit paper plans and apply in person at City Hall. This permit is not available online through MyBuildingPermit.com

Required Documents

Preliminary SEPA

State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA) threshold determination when not associated with a project action or another permit, as determined by the environmental coordinator. (LM)

Required Documents

Shoreline Exemption with or without SEPA

Certain development and repair proposals are exempted from a Substantial Shoreline Development Permit requirement by the Bellevue Shoreline Master Program. The City must still review the proposal and issue an exemption to ensure consistency with the Shoreline Master Program. (With SEPA: WE)
(Without SEPA: WD)

Required Documents  

Additional Requirements

  • Environmental Checklist (submit if SEPA is required)
  • Mitigation Plan
  • Preliminary Clearing & Grading Plan
  • Project Cost Estimate
  • Vegetation Conservation Plan

Shoreline Management Conditional Use

Development or use of land in an area regulated by the Shoreline Master Program and Shoreline Management Act, where the Bellevue Land Use Code requires a conditional use permit for that use. A conditional use requires a separate shoreline substantial development permit. (WA)

Required Documents

Shoreline Variance

Permission to vary from the Bellevue City Code or the Land Use Code pertaining to requirements of the Bellevue Shoreline Master Program. (LS)

Required Documents

Additional Requirements

Substantial Shoreline Development

Any development in a shoreline area or within 200 feet that exceeds exempted thresholds specified in the Bellevue Shoreline Master Program. (WG)

Required Documents

Additional Requirements

Subdivide Property or Adjust Boundaries:

Boundary Line Adjustment

The adjustment or removal of a boundary between lots. (LW)

Required Documents

  • Bill To Form
  • Plat Map for Recording (.dwg AutoCAD drawing format)
  • Title Report

Additional Requirements

Final Plat

The approval and recording of the final plat to create 10 or more lots once infrastructure construction is complete or bonded. (LG)

Required Documents

  • Bill To Form
  • Itemized Cost of Plat Improvements
  • Final Plat
  • Plat Map for Recording (AutoCAD drawing format)
  • Preliminary Approval Conditions
  • Title Report

Final Short Plat or Binding Site Plan

The approval and recording of the final short plat to create up to nine lots once infrastructure construction is complete or bonded. Applications for Binding Site Plan are also considered under this application. A Binding Site Plan is only allowed when it is part of other Land Use permits as specified in the Land Use Code. (LF)

Required Documents

Planned Unit Development

Review of proposed Planned Unit Developments (PUD) or substantial changes to an approved PUD that exceed an amendment or exemption. (LK)

Required Documents

Additional Requirements

Preliminary Plat

The division of land into 10 or more lots for the purpose of sale or lease. (LL)

Required Documents

Preliminary Short Plat

Review for proposals to divide land to create up to nine new lots. (LN)

Required Documents

Additional Requirements

Establish a Conditional Use:

Administrative Conditional Use

Review of certain uses or development to ensure compatibility within the land use district or with surrounding properties. (LA)

Required Documents

Additional Requirements

  • Description of Proposal and Design Intent

Conditional Use

Review of certain uses or development to ensure compatibility within the land use district or surrounding properties. Requires a public hearing before the hearing examiner. (LB)

Required Documents

Additional Requirements

  • Description of Proposal and Design Intent
  • Wireless Communication Supplemental Information

Request a Comprehensive Plan Amendment, Rezone or Variance:

Comprehensive Plan Amendment (CPA)
with Concurrent Rezone

Amendment of the City’s Comprehensive Plan to change the underlying Land Use designation of properties. Applications will be accepted from December 1 through January 31 for the immediately following year. (AC) Submit applications online at MyBuildingPermit.

Amendment applications may be submitted with or without a rezone application. (LQ)

Required Documents

Rezone

A rezone may not require amendment of the City’s Comprehensive plan. Rezones of land authorized by the Comprehensive Plan. Changes to conditions or concomitant agreements applicable to property. Institutional reclassification and master plan development which provides for the location of hospitals and government uses through flexible dimension standards and encourages comprehensive long-term master development planning. (LQ)

Apply For This Permit:

Please submit paper plans and apply in person at City Hall. This permit is not available online through MyBuildingPermit.com.

Required Documents

Variance

Permission to vary from the Bellevue City Code or the Land Use Code. Required for noise exceptions where no other development permits exist. (LS)

See Shoreline Variance for requirements pertaining to the Bellevue Shoreline Master Program.

Required Documents

Additional Requirements

Miscellaneous Requests:

Accessory Dwelling Unit

Registration of a separate dwelling unit within a single-family residence. 

Required Documents

Child Care Registration

Child care located in other than a private residence. A day care center (includes mini day care center) located in a community facility or other facility. (LV)

Required Documents

Current Zoning Status of Property

Request for a letter confirming zoning classification and other minor information for a specific property. (DG)

Required Documents

  • Zoning Verification Request Letter

Home Occupation

Business conducted in a dwelling by a resident of that dwelling; the business must be largely incidental to use of the premises as a dwelling.

In a nonresidential land use district, a home occupation permit must be obtained or all commercial development standards must be met.

Exemption: A business which has no external indication of commercial activity—including no nonresident employees, no client visits, no business-related deliveries, and no vehicle signage—is exempt from a Home Occupation Permit but will require a City of Bellevue Business Registration. See Land Use Code 20.30N. (LH)

Required Documents 

Land Use Code Interpretation 

Specific request for written interpretation of the Land Use Code (DA)

Required Documents 

Noise

Required for the operation of sound amplification equipment. See Noise Control (BCC 9.18.020.0). (LY)

Required Documents

Request for Reasonable Accommodation

Request for exemption from an otherwise applicable requirement of the Bellevue Land Use Code pursuant to the Federal Fair Housing Amendments Act of 1988 or the Washington Law Against Discrimination. (DD)

Required Documents

  • Preliminary Plan
  • Project Narrative

Temporary Encampment

Required for all proposals to establish transient or interim gatherings of temporary enclosures except recreation encampment of less than 10 days. See Land Use Code. (LZ)

Apply For This Permit:

Please submit paper plans and apply in person at City Hall. This permit is not available online through MyBuildingPermit.com.

Required Documents

Temporary Use

Apply a minimum of seven days prior to the event.

Seasonal or transient uses not otherwise permitted may be allowed on an interim basis without full compliance with the development standards.

See Land Use Code 20.30M. Temporary Use approval is not required for any event regulated by the City’s Special Events Code (BCC 14.50).(LR)

Required Documents

Vendor Cart Permit including Sign

Required for all carts and trucks with functional wheels which are operated for the purpose of vending food, drink, or retail goods. See Land Use Code 20.30S. (LT)

Required Documents