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Starting a New Business

The City of Kirkland wants you to have success with your new or expanding business. City staff members from various departments are available to assist you before you start a business and while you grow it.

Economic Development Program
Lorrie McKay 425-587-3009

Businesses are an important part of the Kirkland community because they support economic vitality, quality of life and a safe and clean city. Economic Development staff can help you find a location, guide you through our permitting process and keep you informed and involved so that you are successful.

Development Services
Public Works Department 425-587-3800
Planning & Building Department 425-587-3600
or see the need more help? page on the Development Services Center website

Before you sign a lease, we suggest you talk with our interdepartmental Development Services staff. Staff from the Planning & Community Development, Public Works and Fire & Building Departments support Development Services functions and can help you become familiar with code requirements for:
  • Zoning
  • Parking
  • Landscaping
  • Signs
  • Tenant improvements
  • Construction
  • Fire prevention
  • Home-based business operations
  • Barrier-free requirements
  • Stormwater quality management

Staff is available to help you with issues often overlooked when starting a new business such as traffic impact fees, transportation management, design review, and change in use.

Business Licensing

The City’s Licensing Division is available to assist you with your business license application. As a person or company conducting business within Kirkland city limits, you must obtain a license prior to operating the business, whether you are operating from a fixed location in the City or from an outside location to provide services within city limits. A Washington State business license is required in addition to your City license. If you operate your business from home, a Home Occupation Agreement will be required from the City in addition to the business license.

Water, Sewer & Garbage Services

As a Kirkland business, you most likely receive your water, surface water, sewer (wastewater) and solid waste (garbage collection and recycling) services through the City. Some customers in the northern part of Kirkland receive water and sewer services from the Northshore Utility District. Please contact us to set up a new account or make changes to an existing one.

Garbage collection and recycling services are provided via contract with Waste Management Inc. (WMI). To order carts, report missed collection, or seek customer service help, call WMI Customer Service at 1-800-592-9995.

For assistance in starting a new recycling program, call Kirkland’s Solid Waste Division at 425-587-3812. The City’s Business Recycling Program provides free waste reduction and recycling information, deskside recycling containers, free food scrap and compostables recycling and on-site assistance including presentations to employee groups.

Security Alarm Registration
All security alarm systems, including monitored and non-monitored, within Kirkland city limits must be registered. You can download the form, stop by City Hall, or call the Licensing Division at 425-587-3142 to receive it in the mail. Submit your registration to 123 5th Avenue, Kirkland, WA 98033.

E-City Gov Alliance
Kirkland is an active member of the E-City Gov Alliance – a nine-city consortium with a mission of providing Web-based services to its constituents. As a proprietor looking for property information, maps, permit applications and even recreation classes for your employees, some of the “one stop shopping” website created by the E-City Gov Alliance include: