Seattle launches integrated city planning in Lake City neighborhood

Today Mayor Ed Murray announced that Lake City is the first neighborhood in Seattle to benefit from a new integrated planning effort coordinated by Seattle’s new Office of Planning and Community Development.

“In the past, city departments have each run their own planning efforts – whether it was Parks, SDOT or Housing – and too often the results were disconnected from each other, and from the neighborhood,” said Mayor Murray. “As Seattle grows, we will invest in the parks, sidewalks and transit that respond to community needs. This new approach reflects our response to the frustration of neighbors and the need to streamline the City’s interaction with the community.”

Seattle estimates that it will add 120,000 residents and 115,000 jobs in the next 20 years. Even as housing development has grown rapidly in Seattle’s Urban Villages and Urban Centers, investments in neighborhood amenities have not always kept pace.

The mayor cited voter approval of new funding for transportation, transit, parks and preschools, as well this year’s renewal of the Seattle Housing Levy, as opportunities to invest in neighborhoods across the city.

“Today is a historic day for North Seattle,” said Councilmember Debora Juarez. “We would like to honor the mayor for putting the North End first in this new initiative to synchronize city services and cultivate a more vibrant Lake City community. These actions will create stronger neighborhood ties and an enhanced sense of place right here in District 5. Going forward, I can think of no better way for City Hall to show it has heard the voice of the voters and committed to the promise of district representation.”

The Office of Planning and Community Development will first use an integrated planning approach involving all City departments and expanded community input in the Lake City neighborhood. OPCD is calling the effort a “Shared Vision for Lake City”.

“Lake City is an amazingly energetic and forward thinking neighborhood,” said Diane Sugimura, Office of Planning and Community Development. “I’m grateful to my colleagues in the other City departments who are helping us with this plan. We look forward to continued community conversations and working closely with the Department of Neighborhoods on implementation of this vision.”

The City’s integrated planning effort in Lake City will include:

  • New development standards for new buildings that create a more walkable streetscape and pedestrian-friendly neighborhood.
  • Investment in future park sites in the neighborhood, improvements to existing parks, and better walking access and transportation to Meadowbrook Community Center.
  • New affordable housing with family-sized apartments and Seattle Preschool Program classrooms at the site of Fire Station 39.
  • A minimum of 20 blocks of new sidewalks to support Safe Routes to School and neighborhood walkability.

“As a result of the coordination at the city level, we have stronger partnerships within our community,” said Chris Leverson, Director of Lake City Future First. “Together we can realize our goals with partners like the Children’s Home Society, the North Seattle Family Resource Center, LCNA, North Seattle Chamber, Lake City Greenways, the Lake City Task Force on Homelessness and many others who work to make Lake City thrive.”