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Emergency Temporary Shelters Regulations

Note: This project represents the land use regulatory aspect of the City of Tacoma's latest approach to addressing homelessness. This project was completed in April 2018 (see "Latest News" below). This web page is being maintained to document the progression of the project.


For more information about homelessness, please visit the Homelessness Services web page.


Latest News - City Council Adopted Permanent Regulations on April 10, 2018

After holding a public hearing on March 20, the City Council adopted the proposed Emergency Temporary Shelters Permanent Regulations on April 10, 2018.

Posted below are the Planning Commission's recommendation packet on the subject from February 21, 2018 and the information released for public review in preparation for the Commission's public hearing on February 7, 2018: 

Responding to the Homelessness Crisis 

The following chronological events briefly describe the City of Tacoma's recent endeavors in 2017 in responding to the homelessness crisis:

  • April 10, 2018 - City Council passed Ordinance No. 28498, adopting permanent regulations.
  • March 20, 2018 - City Council to hold a public hearing on the proposed permanent regulations as recommended by the Planning Commission 
  • February 21, 2018 - Planning Commission made a recommendation to the City Council on proposed permanent regulations 
  • February 7, 2018 - Planning Commission held a Public Hearing on the proposed permanent regulations.
  • October 17, 2017 - The City Council adopted Ordinance No. 28460, modifying the interim regulations and extending the duration for 6 months, effective through April 16, 2018.
  • October 10, 2017 - The City Council conducted a public hearing (Hearing Notice) concerning the Council-initiated modifications to and 6-month extension of the interim regulations.  
  • July 25, 2017 - The City Council conducted a public hearing (Hearing Notice) to receive public comment on the interim regulations, and thereafter retained the interim regulations.
  • July 19, 2017 - The Planning Commission, as requested by the City Council, developed a findings of fact and recommendation report, supporting the City Council's imposition of the interim regulations.
  • June 6, 2017 - The City Council adopted Ordinance No. 28432, enacting interim zoning and land use controls as an emergency measure, effective through November 14, 2017, to permit the City to site temporary emergency shelters in response to a declared public emergency.
  • May 9, 2017 - The City Council adopted Ordinance No. 28430, declaring a State of Public Health Emergency, effective through October 9, 2017.
  • May 9, 2017 - The City Manager presented the 3-phased Emergency Aid and Sheltering Program.
  • May 9, 2017 - A news release was issued regarding the state of emergency.
  • May 2, 2017 - The City Council adopted Resolution No. 39716, directing the City Manager to prepare an Emergency Temporary Aid and Shelter Program and an ordinance declaring a state of emergency, in response to the current homelessness crisis.

Staff Contact

Lauren Flemister

(253) 905-4146