January Permit Turnaround Times

DPD is committed to providing good customer service to its applicants. The permit turnaround data is updated monthly online and can be viewed at www.seattle.gov/dpd/toolsresources/ (go to “Turnaround / Approval Times 2015”).

Type of Permit Goal Jan. 2015 Performance
Simple Building IP* 80% in 48 Hours 95.20%
Medium Construction IP 80% in 2 Weeks 70.27%
Complex Construction IP 80% in 8 Weeks 77.46%
Construction Issuance 90% in 120 Days 89.06%
Master Use Permit Decisions 80% in 120 Days 70.45%

*IP: Initial Plan Review by DPD staff

Environmental Critical Areas Open House Wrap Up

On Wednesday, February 25, DPD hosted an open house at City Hall for the 2015 update to our environmentally critical areas (ECAs) regulations. We presented an overview of what ECAs are, how we regulate them, and what changes we are considering in this update. We also had large maps of each ECA type on display. All of these materials will be available on our website.

During the discussion session, we heard good questions about the ECA regulations, such as:

  • How do we identify biodiversity areas that should be protected?
  • How does the Best Available Science get updated and what effect does that have on ECA regulations?
  • What types of relief are available when a property is predominantly characterized by critical areas such as steep slopes?
  • How are public projects regulated under the ECA code?

We also received comments about certain sections of the ECA regulations that are unclear, potential gaps in our mapping, and potential changes that warrant a closer look. That feedback will help as we move toward developing specific code language.

Thanks to everyone who came to the open house. Contact us if you would like us to attend your regular meeting or have questions about the ECA update.

Nick Welch
(206) 684-8203

Seattle Design Commission has New Chair and Commissioner

The Seattle Design Commission has a new chair, and a new commissioner filling the architect position.

Shannon Loew is commission’s new chair. Shannon is the founder of Form In Context (a.k.a.  FIX), a small real estate development company focused on urban infill projects that stimulate community through shared values of innovation and creativity. FIX is the culmination of Shannon’s ongoing pursuit to create great places with inspiring, relevant design. Shannon is an associate member of the AIA, is LEED certified, and holds a Master of Architecture from the Harvard School of Design and a Bachelor of Arts in Environmental Architecture from Vassar College. He has worked with some of the largest real estate developers in the country, with prize winning architects in the U.S. and Europe, and at IDEO, where he designed on a range of issues from apparel retail to sustainable mineral resource extraction. His clients have included Marriott, Nike, Rio Tinto, and Forest City. Prior to his career in architecture, Shannon worked in marketing and business consulting for seven years in New York and South Africa on a diverse set of industries.

John Savo, AIA, is the new commissioner filling the architect position. John is a Principal with NBBJ in Seattle and a leader of the firm’s commercial and corporate practice. For over 30 years, John has been leading urban architecture projects that emphasize innovation, historic preservation and sustainability. A generalist, John has delivered a wide range of project types for his clients, including high-rise and mid-rise office and residential buildings, complex mixed-use projects, public infrastructure, corporate and institutional master plans, and historic building rehabilitations. In addition to practice, John has taught architecture and design at universities in Boston and Seattle and has served locally on the Boards of Leadership Tomorrow, the South Lake Union Community Council and the South Lake Union Chamber of Commerce for which he served as President in 2012. John is also Chair of the Citizens Advisory Committee for Seattle University’s Master Plan.  Passionate about advancing a more sustainable future, he has presented at numerous conferences, including Green Leaders Summit, Green Build and Code Green. Prior to joining NBBJ in 1985, John was with Olson Walker Architects in Seattle and Marcel Breuer Associates in NYC.


February Publication Updates





Director’s Rules