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Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, no WCF shall be used or developed contrary to any applicable development standard unless an exception has been granted pursuant to this section. These provisions apply exclusively to WCFs and are in lieu of the generally applicable variance provisions in Chapter 14.70 SMC.

A. A WCF exception is a Type 4 permit process.

B. Submittal Requirements. In addition to the submittal requirements for the WCF permit application, an application for a WCF exception shall include:

1. A written statement demonstrating how the exception would meet the criteria.

2. A site plan that includes:

a. A description of the proposed facility’s design and dimensions, as it would appear with and without the exception.

b. Elevations showing all components of the WCF as it would appear with and without the exception.

c. Color simulations of the WCF after construction demonstrating compatibility with the vicinity, as it would appear with and without the exception.

C. Criteria. An application for a WCF exception shall be granted if the following criteria are met:

1. The exception is consistent with the purpose of the development standard for which the exception is sought.

2. Based on a visual analysis, the design minimizes the visual impacts to residential designations, the Historic District, and public places, including street rights-of-way through mitigating measures, including, but not limited to, building heights, design, bulk, color, and landscaping.

3. The applicant demonstrates the following:

a. A significant gap in the coverage, capacity, or technologies of the service network exists such that users are regularly unable to connect to the service network, or are regularly unable to maintain a connection, or are unable to achieve reliable wireless coverage within a building;

b. The gap in coverage or connectivity can only be filled through an exception to one or more of the standards of this chapter; and

c. The exception requested is narrowly tailored to fill the service gap such that the wireless communication facility conforms to this chapter’s objectives and standards to the greatest extent possible.

4. Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, for a new tower proposed to be located within or adjacent to a residential designation, the applicant must also demonstrate that the manner in which it proposes to fill the significant gap in coverage, connectivity, capacity, or technologies of the service network is the least visually intrusive to the surrounding community and the most consistent with the standards in this chapter. (Ord. 2338, 2017)

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