Addressing and Road Naming

When is it necessary to get an assigned address? 

It's always a good idea to have an assigned address prior to the start of any project involving the development of a piece of property. Not only is it a requirement of the County, but the utility companies (phone, power, etc.) will also require that you have an assigned address prior to ordering their services.

Most importantly, accidents can occur even during the construction phase. With an assigned address in place prior to construction, emergency services will then have the information needed to find you in such an event.

What's involved in getting an assigned address?

It's extremely easy! All that is needed is a completed application, a confirmed access route (i.e. easement, road access permit),a simple site plan, and a $25.00 addressing fee.

Your address will be determined based on driveway location and surrounding number sequences. In some cases, there could be a requirement for naming a common driveway/private road, depending on the length of the road and the number of residences using it.

What needs to have an assigned address?

Single-family residences Multi-family residences
Accessory or secondary dwellings Commercial & industrial structures

Road Naming

When is it necessary to name a road?

Current Chelan County Code 10.20 requires that all roads which are either over 1000 feet in length or that provide primary access to three or more addressable parcels, structures or units to be named.  Shared driveways or roads with no name are difficult to find and are easily overlooked during an emergency response.  Responders are not always familiar with your area.  By having the road named, it places it on the map for them and pinpoints your exact location, making the search area much smaller, and allows them to find you more easily.

What’s involved in naming a road?

For roads that have been previously un-named, the process is fairly straight forward.  You will need to complete our Road Name Application form and pay a $25.00 Road Naming fee.  A majority of the property owners who use the road that you are naming for their primary access or have property bordering the road must sign the form agreeing to the road naming and the stated choices for the name.  This is necessary because those residents that have a driveway connection to the road being named will be readdressed once an approved road name has been chosen.  After we receive the proposed road names, we will run a check with RiverCom 911 to make sure that there are no issues with spellings or sounds and to insure that the name isn’t already being used somewhere else in the County.  If all checks out, we will send out letters to the affected residents notifying them of the name selection and advising them of their new address.

For roads that have been previously named, and are being renamed as a matter of public safety, the process is basically the same except for the fact that the Board of Commissioners will also have to approve of the renaming.

What about the road name sign?

Road name signs must be installed for every named road in the County (per Chelan County Code 10.20)  These signs are relied upon by emergency services. Installation and maintenance responsibilities vary depending on ownership of the road.  If the road is a private road, the road name sign is the responsibility of the property owners whose property abuts or has legal access to the road to have fabricated based on MUTCD guidelines and then installed.  After installation, maintenance of private road signs are the responsibility of the residents and not of Chelan County.  

Please refer to Chelan County Code 10.20.300-330 for the particulars that you will need to be aware of when fabricating a sign.  County road signs are the sole responsibility of the County.  If you notice a missing or damaged sign, please call our office to let us know.

Why can't I just name my own road by putting up a sign and not going through the County's process?

Unless the new road name goes through the County's process, emergency responders will not have any information about the location of that road during an emergency. Chelan County does all of the road and address mapping that emergency services uses for navigation during an emergency.

Now that my road is going to have a name, will it be a public road?

No. If the road was private, it will remain private. Requiring it to be named is only to assist emergency services and general deliveries with its location.

After my road is named, will the County begin maintaining it?

No. Your access road maintenance remains the responsibility of the residents who use it. Typically, Chelan County only maintains roads that are owned by the public.