City of Kent to restrict size, location of self-storage facilities

City of Kent to restrict size, location of self-storage facilities

Nearly two dozen already exist across town

With about 25 self-storage facilities scattered across town, the Kent City Council decided to limit the size of future mini-warehouses and require them to be located in buildings with other, principally permitted uses.

“Mini-warehouses take up 5 acres and do not bring a lot of vitality into areas,” said Matt Gilbert, city economic and Community Development deputy director, in a report to a council committee. “It’s a dead use with a large footprint that creates a big blank spot in the landscape. The large format uses take up big chunk of land in commercial zones where they are allowed.”

The self-storage facilities generate little employment, relatively less revenue for the city compared to other uses and may negatively impact the vitality of commercial corridors, according to a city staff report.

“Land used exclusively as mini-warehousing could otherwise be utilized for housing or more employment-intensive businesses,” according to the staff report. “Mini-warehousing’s rents tend to rise with the growth of an area and are very unlikely to redevelop into other uses over time.”

The full council approved the regulation change in March after the council’s Economic and Community Development Committee recommended adoption earlier in the month. The city’s Land Use and Planning Board passed the proposal in February.

“Why not just stop these?” Council President Bill Boyce asked staff at the committee meeting.

Gilbert answered that a ban could be a policy that causes trouble. With size restrictions, a commercial developer could still devote as much as 40 percent of the leased space to public storage but without direct access from the street level, which would be restricted to retail or professional services.

“This approach leaves open the possibility of well integrated, mixed-use projects while protecting the city’s interests in economic development and commercial corridor vitality,” according to city staff.

“When it’s integrated into a retail format, it’s not the sea of garage doors look,” Gilbert said.

With the limits rather than a ban, self-storage units remain as an option for a developer.

“To not be hard line about it leaves the door open for a creative developer,” Gilbert said.

Kent already has more self-storage facilities per capita than Auburn, Covington, Renton, Des Moines, Bellevue, Redmond and Shoreline, city staff said. People pay between $147 and $206 per unit per month depending on the size of the rental space.

Gilbert said it could even be possible that residential units get built on commercial land.

“The demand for land is changing as we all buy stuff online,” he said. “This plans for the next generation of growth.”

Self-storage facility to be built

Prior to the new regulations, a developer received approval from the city in early March for a new public storage facility on the East Hill.

A three-story self-storage building will go up at 15460 SE 272nd St. The first phase of the project also includes two retail/office buildings on the 5.5-acre site, according to city documents. The second phase of construction includes three more self-storage buildings.


Talk to us

Please share your story tips by emailing editor@kentreporter.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.kentreporter.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) Please keep letters to 300 words or less.

More in News

t
Kent Police Blotter: May 28 to June 10

Incidents include robberies at Walgreens, 7-Eleven; assaults, shots fired

t
Kent School District’s Class of 2024 high school graduates | Photos

Kent-Meridian, Kentlake, Kentridge, Kentwood, Kent Laboratory Academy graduated last weekend

Renton Police respond June 5 to a fatal shooting outside the Big 5 Sporting Goods store on South Grady Way. COURTESY PHOTO, Renton Police
Man charged in killing of Kent teen outside Renton sporting goods store

Off-duty security officer reportedly fired at least seven shots at Kent-Meridian High student

t
King County’s MLK distinguished service award goes to Kent’s Shamso Issak

Councilmember Dave Upthegrove selects Living Well Kent director for the honor

t
Renton man sentenced for 2021 murder in Kent parking lot

Receives 30-year sentence for shooting Avery Wilcox Jr.

Courtesy Photo, Kent School District
Kent School District receives clean state audit for 2022-2023

District in compliance with financial statements and activities, according to state auditor

t
Second Kent-Meridian High School student in 3 days fatally shot

Hazrat Ali Rohani, 17, killed June 5 in shooting outside of Big 5 Sporting Goods in Renton

Construction sign on SR 18. (Cameron Sires/ Sound Publishing)
WSDOT responds to stakeholders about future I-90/SR 18 projects

Construction causes concerns about congestion for freight and commuter traffic.

t
King County launches secure computer tablet program for people in custody

Phone calls, e-books and resources at jails in Seattle and Kent and youth detention facility in Seattle

t
Students receive 49 scholarships at Kent Community Foundation event

More than $100,000 awarded to high school students

Kent-Meridian High School. COURTESY PHOTO, Kent School District
Man, 18, found shot in parking lot identified as Kent-Meridian student | Update

Medical Examiner’s Office rules death of Cristopher Medina Zelaya a homicide

t
Federal agents arrest Kent man for allegedly distributing drugs

Mexican citizen reportedly part of drug trafficking ring in Washington, Mexico and Colombia