A Shoreline Master Program (SMP) comprises policies and regulations that apply to shoreline areas. In Long Beach, two related areas are included in the shoreline: 1) the ocean and its beach, from 3 miles west (in the ocean) to about 200 feet east of the base of the outer dune, and 2) what are termed “associated wetlands,” which are those wetlands generally located between the current outer dune and the old outer dune, just west of Ocean Beach Boulevard. The SMP is intended to guide environmental protection, development, and public access.
Ideally, SMPs are updated about every eight years. However, the existing Long Beach SMP is dated 1997. While a few things have changed in in the Long Beach shoreline area since that time, much has changed in the regulatory world. So, it is time for an SMP update. This update is expected to be completed mid-2016.
The City and State Department of Ecology jointly administer the SMP. For background on the origins of SMPs and the Shoreline Management Act (SMA), see the following links to the Washington State Department of Ecology’s (“Ecology”) website:
What is a shoreline Master Program?
Introduction to the Shoreline Management Act
Frequently Asked Questions about the SMA and SMPs including property rights.