The terms “alley vacation” and “street vacation” come up often in development, and are difficult to explain, but vital to understand, since they involve selling publicly owned property to developers, with City Council approval required. You can read about the process here – but that might still leave you with questions, so, in hopes of expanding understanding, René Commons, who’s leading the recently relaunched Junction Neighborhood Organization, brought city-government experts to last night’s meeting, and we recorded their presentations on video. The main speakers you’ll see are Beverly Barnett, the SDOT manager who is point person for the review of these requests, and Michael Jenkins from the Seattle Design Commission, the citywide advisory group that has to sign off on street/alley vacations before SDOT and the council can render final judgment.
P.S. It was pointed out that the 4755 Fauntleroy/Whole Foods alley-vacation request – the mayor-opposed proposal that won’t go to the council any sooner than December – is still open for public comment – any proposed vacation is open for comment until it gets to the council; e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org if you have something to say. Here’s our original February report on that part of the project (which was approved by the Design Commission in June after four reviews – the minutes of that meeting, as mentioned in this video of JuNO’s meeting, are here).
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