Growth Management related documents and resources

New! – Building Green Cities guidance
Fact Sheet

2018 Critical Areas Handbook
Commerce has completed updates to our critical areas guidance document. The new 2018 Handbook addresses the following: Wetlands rating system, Voluntary Stewardship Program, agricultural activities, FEMA Biological Opinion, availability of LiDAR, monitoring and adaptive management, a salmon recovery roadmap, and other issues. Also, a new chapter on monitoring and adaptive management has been added, highlighting 13 local government case studies on monitoring and adaptive management. Links to individual chapters are below.

Complete Handbook

Table of Contents
Chapter 1 – Introduction: Reviewing and Updating Critical Areas Protection Programs
Chapter 2 – Resources for Designating and Protecting Critical Areas
Chapter 3 – Structuring Critical Areas Regulations
Chapter 4 – Critical Areas Protections and Other Laws and Regulations
Chapter 5 – Protection Critical Areas in Natural Resources Lands
Chapter 6 – Non-regulatory Incentive Programs – Opportunities for Critical Areas Protection and Restoration
Chapter 7 – Monitoring and Adaptive Management of Critical Areas Regulations
More information is available on the Critical Areas page

Growth Management Documents and Resources
Buildable Lands Guidance, 2018 (PDF)
Building Cities in the Rain – Guidance for Watershed Prioritization for Stormwater Retrofits, 2016 (PDF)
Building Cities in the Rain Project Development Page– Information and materials regarding the development of Building Cities in the Rain guidance (Website)
Capital Facilities Planning Guidebook, 2014 (PDF)
Climate Change – Addressing Climate Change through Comprehensive Planning under the GMA, 2008 (PDF)
Climate Change – Greenhouse Gas Analysis Tools, 2009 (PDF)
GMA and Related Laws Update Booklet, 2017 (PDF)
Hazard Mitigation Integration Summary Report, 2020 (PDF)
Hazard Mitigation Integration Plan Resource Handbook, 2020 (PDF)
Housing – Guidance for Developing a Housing Action Plan, 2020 (PDF)
Housing – Guidance for Developing a Housing Needs Assessment, 2020 (PDF)
Housing Guidebook, 2021 (PDF)
Legislative Report: Defense Community Compatibility Account, 2020 – Regarding the formation of a grant program for local compatibility projects (2019 SSB 5748) (PDF)
Military and Community Compatibility Guidebook, 2019 – Information for compatibility planning needs and best practices, prepared in partnership with MAKERS Architecture and Urban Design, LLP (PDF)
Military and Community Compatibility Strategy, 2017 – A program implementation plan recommended by The Spectrum Group (TSG) (PDF) 
Legislative Report: Civilian-Military Land Use Study, 2016 – Regarding encroachment and compatibility in Washington State (RCW 36.70A.530) and nationwide best practices, prepared by TSG (PDF) 
Regional Transfer of Development Rights Report, 2013 (PDF)
Short Course on Local Planning Resource Guide, Version 5.3 2017 (PDF)
Transportation Guidebook, 2012 (PDF)
Urban Growth Area Guidebook, 2012 (PDF)