Shoreline Master Program (SMP) Periodic Review

What is a Shoreline Master Program?

The City of Long Beach Shoreline Master Program (SMP) is a set of policies and regulations required by state law that has three basic principles:

  • Encourages reasonable and appropriate development of shorelines with an emphasis on water dependent uses;
  • Protects the natural resources and character of the shorelines, the land, vegetation, wildlife, water, and aquatic life within shoreline environment; and,
  • Promotes public access and provides opportunities to enjoy the aesthetic qualities of the natural shorelines and recreational activities in shoreline areas.

Link to the City of Long Beach 2017 Shoreline Master Program

Where does the Shoreline Master Program apply?

The jurisdiction of the SMP applies to the following areas located between the northern and southern city limit boundaries:

  • The narrow band of land 200 feet from the ocean’s ordinary high water mark
  • The Pacific Ocean three nautical miles west of the ordinary high water mark
  • The area within wetlands located in the interdunal area

Link to the Shoreline Jurisdiction Map

Since the adoption of the city’s 2017 SMP, there has been no development within shoreline jurisdiction that has required permitting.

Required Updates

The Shoreline Management Act (SMA) requires the city to review, and revise if necessary, its SMP on an eight-year schedule under state law (RCW 90.58.080).  This review ensures the SMP stays current with changes with state laws and rules, remains consistent with other city plans and development regulations, and reflects changed circumstances, new information, or improved data.

While most of the updates required by the state during this periodic review are relatively minor, the new Ocean Resource Management Act (ORMA) requirements represents the biggest change to the city’s SMP.  You can learn more about Washington State’s Ocean Management program by visiting the Department of Ecology’s web page.

Link to the Department of Ecology’s Ocean Management Program

Participating in the Update Process

You can participate in the update process through one or more of the following steps:

  1. Introductory meeting. The city’s Planning Commission will introduce the community to the SMP Periodic Review at 3 PM, September 30, 2021.  This meeting will discuss the update process, outline the state’s required updates, provide a Q&A opportunity, and introduce a SMP Update Survey. 

Please note: Due to COVID-19 restrictions, meetings will take place as Zoom webinars.  Please check the Notices section on the city’s main webpage for connection information.

  1. SMP Survey. The survey will be an important opportunity to share your ideas, comments, and concerns about the SMP.  The survey is available to complete on-line.  Please complete and submit your survey by October 19, 2021.

Link to on-line SMP Update Survey

  1. Planning Commission Review. The Planning Commission will be reviewing results of the survey at their October 26, 2021 meeting and determining if other changes to the SMP are necessary.
  2. 30-Day Comment Period. Once the city completes a second draft SMP after the October 26, 2021 meeting, a 30-day public comment period will begin.  This comment period will also coordinate with the required environmental review under the State Environmental Policy Act.  All documents will be available for public review on this website and at City Hall.
  3. Joint Public Hearing. At the conclusion of the comment period, the Planning Commission and the Department of Ecology will hold a Joint Public Hearing.  The anticipated date of this hearing will be January 11, 2022.  Results from the public hearing may result in additional changes to the draft SMP.  Once the Planning Commission is satisfied with their review of the document, they will prepare a recommendation to the City Council for their consideration.  The city will also submit the draft SMP to the Department of Ecology for their review.
  4. City Council Adoption. The City Council will consider the Planning Commission recommendation and decide their next steps.  Changes to the SMP draft may still occur at this stage.  When the City Council is ready, they will then adopt the SMP by ordinance and submit it to the Department of Ecology for their final review and approval.  At this point, the new 2022 SMP becomes effective.

Please visit this site often

Dates for future meetings may change due to unforeseen circumstances and the city may add or update documents (see below).

For more information:

Please contact Ariel Smith, City Planner, planner@longbeachwa.gov or (360) 642-4421

SMP Periodic Review Documents

City of Long Beach Public Participation Plan

City of Long Beach Draft SMP Periodic Review Schedule