A. Heliports – General Requirements.
1. In addition to the applicable decision criteria in LUC 20.30B.140 or 20.30E.140, the City shall consider, but not be limited to, the following criteria, in deciding whether to approve or approve with modifications an application for a heliport Conditional Use or Administrative Conditional Use Permit:
a. In consideration of identified noise impacts, the City may impose conditions restricting the type of aircraft permitted to land at an approved heliport, and conditions which limit the number of daily takeoffs and landings and hours of operation.
c. The City may consider whether approach and departure paths are obstruction-free and whether residential or critical areas would be adversely affected. The City may also consider whether approach and departure paths abut freeway corridors or waterways.
2. All applications to construct a heliport must include the results of the appropriate Federal Aviation Administration review. A determination of negative impact on navigable airspace by the FAA will result in denial of a land use or Building Permit unless the applicant agrees to comply with the recommendations to mitigate such impacts. The mitigating measures shall be made conditions of the land use or Building Permit.
3. Heliport landing areas shall be at least one and one-half times the overall length of the largest helicopter expected to use the facility.
5. Public use heliports shall be marked in accordance with FAA recommendations.
6. Private use and personal use heliports may be unmarked or marked with individualized markings recognizable to the pilots authorized to use the facility, but may not be marked with the same markings as a public use heliport.
7. All heliports intended to accommodate night landings shall be lighted in accordance with FAA recommendations.
8. Access to heliport landing areas, except water surfaces, shall be controlled by physical restraints. If fences, walls, or parapets are used for access control, the minimum height shall be 42 inches.
9. All approaches to an area of helicopter operations will have conspicuous signs notifying those who approach the operation.
10. Touchdown Pads.
a. Recommended Touchdown Pad. The recommended dimension of a touchdown pad is equal to the rotor diameter of the largest helicopter expected to operate from the facility.
b. Minimum Touchdown Pad. At a heliport that has an extremely low level of activity, smaller areas may be used. Pad dimensions are based on rectangular configurations. A circular pad having a diameter equal to the longer side of the rectangular configuration set forth in subsection A.10.b.i or A.10.b.ii of this section is acceptable. Skid or float length should be substituted for wheelbase as appropriate.
i. Public Use Heliports. The minimum sized touchdown pad shall have a length and width at least two times the wheelbase and tread, respectively, or a diameter of 2.0 times the wheelbase of the largest helicopter expected to use the facility.
ii. Private Use or Personal Use Heliports. The minimum sized touchdown pad shall have a length and width at least one and one-half times the wheelbase and tread, respectively, or a diameter of one and one-half times the wheelbase of the largest helicopter expected to use the facility.
13. The requirements of subsections A.3 through A.12 of this section may be modified in special circumstances upon written technical evaluation and recommendation of the nearest FAA Airports District Office or Washington State Department of Transportation, Division of Aeronautics office.
14. A hospital emergency-use-only heliport is exempt from the provisions of subsection A.1 of this section but must comply with the requirements in subsections A.2 through A.13 of this section. For purposes of this subsection A.14, “emergency” is defined as when any patient who requires care of significant severity such that alternative means of transport would adversely affect the health of that person.
15. Government use heliport facilities are exempt from the requirements of subsections A.3 through A.12 of this section. Government heliport design shall be based upon technical evaluation and recommendation of the nearest FAA Airports District Office or Washington State Department of Transportation, Division of Aeronautics office.
B. Helicopter Landing Permits.
2. A permit is valid for a maximum of 30 days. Conditions may be imposed which limit the number of flights and the hours of operation. The applicant shall be required to execute a hold harmless agreement in favor of the City.
3. A permit will be refused if the City determines that the proposed landing(s) will pose a substantial threat to the health, safety or welfare of the surrounding community.
4. Operations of a government authority in cases of emergency, search and rescue, fire and law enforcement are exempt from the permit requirements of this subsection. (Ord. 6016, 8-1-11, § 2; Ord. 5683, 6-26-06, § 8; Ord. 5477, 10-20-03, § 1; Ord. 5475, 10-20-03, § 6; Ord. 4029, 9-5-89, § 3)