U District EIS Comment Period Extended to June 23

Based on feedback we received at the public hearing on May 20, we are extending the deadline for written comments on DPD’s U District Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) from June 9 to June 23. Materials from the public hearing are now posted on our project website.

Our U District draft EIS evaluates potential map and text amendments to the Comprehensive Plan and Land Use Code (Seattle Municipal Code Title 23) to allow greater height and density in our U District study area. Zoning changes would be accompanied by an affordable housing incentive program and incentives for open space and other neighborhood amenities, and by development standards regulating setbacks, tower separation, and street frontage.

The study looks at future growth under two possible rezone scenario
s and one “no action” alternative where zoning stays the same. The alternatives, based on extensive community involvement, are:

  • Alternative 1: Medium towers, more dispersed development pattern
  • Alternative 2: Taller towers, most focused development pattern
  • Alternative 3: No Action—current zoning, most dispersed development pattern

The public comment period for this Draft EIS is April 24, 2014 through June 23, 2014. For questions, or to submit comments, contact project manager Dave LaClergue at (206) 733-9668, dave.laclergue@seattle.gov, or

City of Seattle Department of Planning and Development
Attn: Dave LaClergue
700 5th Ave., Suite 2000
Seattle WA98124-4019

For more information, visit DPD’s U District website or contact:

Dave LaClergue
(206) 733-9668
dave.laclergue@seattle.gov

U District Green Streets and EIS

A lot is happening in the U District!  April saw milestones for two ongoing projects. First, we’ve released draft streetscape designs for Brooklyn Ave NE, NE 43rd St., and NE 42nd St. Second, we’re requesting public comments on the U District Urban Design Draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS).

Green street concept plans are an opportunity for the neighborhood and the City to establish a clear vision for key pedestrian corridors. Those visions are implemented over time as private development and City projects gradually make improvements to widen sidewalks, add landscaping, art, and other amenities.

The community identified Brooklyn, 43rd, and 42nd as green streets in the 1998 neighborhood plan.  Now that development is picking up in the U District and a major public infrastructure project (Link Light Rail) will be improving stretches of Brooklyn and 43rd, the time is right to identify priorities and opportunities on these streets.

We hosted a public open house on April 16. Participants voiced strong support for improvements to pedestrian safety and aesthetics.  In particular, there’s excitement about the possibility of creating a curbless “festival street” on Brooklyn abutting the future light rail station, and on 43rd approach the UW Central Campus. Based on the suggestions and concerns raised at that meeting, we’re working on final recommendations for joint approval by DPD and the Seattle Department of Transportation.

We published the Draft EIS on April 24.  This document studies likely future impacts of several possible zoning scenarios.  It projects 20 years of growth under current zoning as well as two hypothetical rezones.  This analysis will serve as a bridge between the U District Urban Design Framework (2013) and the zoning recommendations we anticipate sending to City Council in early 2015.

To present findings from the DEIS, we’ll host at an open house and public hearing on May 20, 2014.  Comments on the DEIS are due June 9, 2014.

Meeting Details

When:
May 20, 2014
6:00 p.m.

Where:
University Temple Methodist Church
1415 NE 43rd Street
Seattle

We expect the final EIS (FEIS)to be released in late summer 2014 – this document will add to the Draft EIS and respond to comments we receive during this public comment period.

For more information about any of our work in the U District, please visit www.seattle.gov/dpd/udistrict. For questions or comments on green streets or the Draft EIS, please contact:

Dave LaClergue, Urban Designer
(206) 733-9668
dave.laclergue@seattle.gov