FOLLOWUP: Mayor Murray backs off proposal that would potentially densify most single-family-zone neighborhoods

3:01 PM: Two weeks after Mayor Murray went public with his housing-affordability recommendations, while also releasing the Housing Affordability and Livability Advisory Committee‘s report, he is backing off the most controversial proposal – the plan to change not the zoning, but the rules, for most single-family neighborhoods (as detailed in this WSB report). Here’s the news release:

Today Mayor Ed Murray issued the following statement announcing he will not recommend pursuing a Housing Affordability and Livability Agenda (HALA) committee recommendation that could have changed 94 percent of single-family zones in Seattle. Instead, he is calling for renewed public dialogue on how best to increase affordable housing in denser neighborhoods:

“The Council and I created the HALA process because our city is facing a housing affordability crisis. In the weeks since the HALA recommendations were released, sensationalized reporting by a few media outlets has created a significant distraction and derailed the conversation that we need to have on affordability and equity.

“Fundamentally, this is a conversation about building a Seattle that welcomes people from all walks of life — where working people, low-income families, seniors, young people and the kids of current residents all can live in our city.

“We also must not be afraid to talk about the painful fact that parts of our city are still impacted by the intersection of income, race and housing. Look at a map and take a walk through our neighborhoods. We can move beyond the legacy of the old boundaries of exclusion that have remained largely unchanged since nearly a century ago when neighborhood covenants were used to keep people of color south of Madison Street.

“I have always believed that Seattle can step up and have a difficult conversation about our history of racial discrimination and economic inequality. Our shared vision for Seattle includes affordable housing and diversity in all our neighborhoods.

“To advance the broader conversation about affordable housing and equity, I will no longer pursue changes that could allow more types of housing in 94 percent of single-family zones. Instead, we will refocus the discussion on designing denser Urban Centers, Urban Villages and along transit corridors that include more affordable housing.”

ADDED 6:16 PM: What is still on the table for 6 percent of Seattle’s single-family-zoned area is explained in the second half of this fact sheet issued with the original proposals two weeks ago. But all the discussion remains in the early stages, as no legislation has been sent to the City Council yet – its new Select Committee on Housing Affordability is not scheduled to meet again until August 10th. We reported on its first meeting here.

65 Replies to "FOLLOWUP: Mayor Murray backs off proposal that would potentially densify most single-family-zone neighborhoods"

  • justadumbguy July 29, 2015 (3:11 pm)

    He decided he wanted to be re-elected?

  • Mark July 29, 2015 (3:13 pm)

    Way to take a stand there Murray. This one can be filed in the Seattle Commons folder after it’s discussed to death.

  • Jake July 29, 2015 (3:23 pm)

    Murray mentions “sensationalized reporting” but couldn’t actually say that the reports on the intent of the changes were wrong or misleading, just sensational. Judging from the backlash, he at least got that part right.

    • WSB July 29, 2015 (3:41 pm)

      I haven’t gotten around to adding this yet but anyone at the first 35th SW meeting will recall that the mayor claimed most single-family neighborhoods would *not* be affected by the proposals, contrary to what had been reported in multiple places, whether you consider it sensational or not. It was something of a matter of semantics, as we finally understood while researching for our followup … while technically the *zoning* itself wouldn’t change, the rules/definition of the zone were proposed for changes. But remember, nothing’s final until it gets through the council, so whatever you think should be done or not done, it’s still incredibly early in the process, and it would seem like almost anything can happen – TR
      Bill V – I think you’re joking but if I had to guess who the mayor’s referring to, I’d say Danny Westneat and KIRO radio (Dori Monson and/or Jason Rantz). Did any of the TV stations take the “OMG, all single-family zoning will be overrun” angle? Lately I’ve only noticed that clearly consultants (who do market research to look for hot topics that could grab viewers) must be advising local TV to do stories about parking … which of course comes up here in development-coverage comments but has been the subject of so many TV stories recently, I’m surprised nobody has put somebody on an exclusively-covering-parking beat yet. Or maybe they have.

  • Bill V July 29, 2015 (3:39 pm)

    “sensationalized reporting by a few media outlets”

    I knew it was your fault, WSB!!!

  • Andrew R. July 29, 2015 (4:05 pm)

    This is such an unfortunate back-slide… The only change was to allow *both* DADUs and ADUs on the same property, and to allow them to be owned? How does this change the “character” of these neighborhoods? The same types of dwellings would be present – no complaints of “unsightly” or “uncharacteristic” structures apply. I hope Murray can find a way to work these kinds of innovations back into the code, so that Seattle can remain a livable, affordable place for more people…

  • Dee July 29, 2015 (4:11 pm)

    MAYOR out!

  • KT July 29, 2015 (4:20 pm)

    “Instead, we will refocus the discussion on designing denser Urban Centers, Urban Villages and along transit corridors that include more affordable housing.” I remain wary of the Mayor until this is definitively defined. Tell me exactly what 6% of single family zoning will be affected up right up front.
    I also find his continuing charges of racism disturbing…

  • KT July 29, 2015 (4:27 pm)

    Danny Westneat wrote an opinion piece on July 15th where he quoted the Mayor saying then that “Under our plan, 94 percent of existing single-family neighborhoods will see no up zones”. Yet when contacted by Westneat, a member of the Mayor’s Housing Affordability and Livability Committee stated that “I think the mayor was trying to do some messaging there.” “The rules would definitely change in all the single-family zones in Seattle. Is that sensationalizing? No.

  • Jason July 29, 2015 (4:37 pm)

    This is so disappointing. I was very excited about the single family zone changes. They would have helped the city to become more vibrant and livable. I own a single family home and would have been happy to have a duplex or some flats next door or down the street. Leaders are supposed to lead, not back away from necessary changes just because they’re controversial. I hope we at least end up with better ADU and DADU rules, and expanded urban village boundaries.

  • alwayslateandalittlebehind July 29, 2015 (4:39 pm)

    Yes, he messaged/lied. Happens all the time, I am learning. Same ole same ole.

    But isn’t the outcome the original intent of the Urban Village plans?

    Talk about going a long way out of your way to come back a short distance correctly.

    Ok, with maybe a wee bit more oomph to getting the transit nodes concurrent with cheap apartments. That’s what he means, right? It won’t happen, I don’t think. But I am feeling very negatively lately. I can’t imagine why.

    But I do like the idea of saving the bungalows. But I don’t like the history of developer/homeowner racism. That’s in the record books for points of origin but I’ve lived in the north end. South end was acceptable dumping ground. Though how dumping home encampments in them is equitable is a bit baffling to me. That makes me feel negatively toward him.

    Politics is ridiculous.

    I am taking a news vacation.

  • Matt S. July 29, 2015 (4:52 pm)

    I hope the internet is okay with me having mixed feelings on this one.

  • thankful July 29, 2015 (5:18 pm)

    Seattle is about 50% homeowners, yet homeowners had almost zero representation in determining one of the most significant proposed changes to zoning in Seattle history. As a hard working homeowner I am sick of the mayor ignoring my needs for special interests and I am far from alone. The mayor woke a sleeping giant and he is regretting it.

  • Peter July 29, 2015 (5:30 pm)

    A good idea derailed by a reactionary campaign of disinformation by Danny Westneat.

  • West Seattle Hipster July 29, 2015 (5:43 pm)

    thankful + 1.


    Looks like another single term mayor.

  • Jason July 29, 2015 (5:44 pm)

    People need to stop saying that “homeowners” and “neighborhoods” weren’t represented on HALA. Almost every member of HALA owns and lives in a single family detached home, and all of those homes are situated in neighborhoods. The HALA members who supported these changes did so because they thought they were important and necessary, and despite the fact that they would slightly alter their neighborhood dynamics.

  • JoB July 29, 2015 (5:50 pm)

    now we know what the Mayor’s committees are for
    to float trial balloons to test for public opinion
    i wonder how many taxpayer dollars this one cost us

  • onion July 29, 2015 (5:56 pm)

    danny is one of the few really good things about the Times. How was it disinformation?

    Also, people should note that Lisa Herbold is allying with Sawant on an alternate housing plan. Curious where else that partnership might lead.

  • jetcitydude July 29, 2015 (6:06 pm)

    Murray is in way over his head on a lot of complexed issues. He’s a one term mayor unless I can’t help it.

  • Kadoo July 29, 2015 (6:09 pm)

    The mayor shouldn’t have talked about changes to singe-family housing until he asked for public input. It made him look like he doesn’t give a hoot what people think (which could be true). I’m glad he’s back pedaling on this one and listening to the people who pushed back. I was beginning to think he never listens so this is an improvement.

  • Single family July 29, 2015 (6:36 pm)

    I am embarrassed that Murray is from West Seattle.

    @ Jason
    Almost every member of HALA owns and lives in a single family detached home, and all of those homes are situated in neighborhoods.”

    Jason, have you ever heard of the term, “limousine liberal?”

  • Ruby S. July 29, 2015 (6:37 pm)

    Well that was all stupid.

    Way to stand for nothing.

  • Bradley July 29, 2015 (7:20 pm)

    Many thanks to Danny Westneat for breaking this story. Had the Mayor’s office kept this plan successfully hidden, we would have no choice but massive legal action.

  • Bill V July 29, 2015 (7:41 pm)

    Thank WSB, and I was joking. I would like to see some coverage on the parking issue as well.

    We were all supposed to take as gospel that there is an “affordable housing crisis.” I would like a house on the French Riviera, but because I can’t afford it des not make it a “crisis.” Also, I am not entitled to live within a convenient distance to my work. People used to want to live in the suburbs.

    Council candidates cautiously floated this idea (in fliers) based on this assertion, only to find resistance from people who vote.

    I am not convinced that the upzoning would be effective based on the evidence that has been presented (consisting of, in part, hazy and questionable assertions of social justice).

    Shields up!

  • pupsarebest July 29, 2015 (7:42 pm)

    Now he needs to come to his senses regarding the plan to make 35th SW one lane in each direction.

  • mr. the horse July 29, 2015 (7:50 pm)

    * $930,000,000 for a “Move Seattle” transportation levy (not a whole lot for west seattle)
    * $392,300,000 for “Best Starts for Kids”
    * 273,000,000 for Emergency Radio System

    who pays for this?

    wait for it…

    home owners.

  • AmandaKH July 29, 2015 (7:54 pm)

    I wonder which HALA member leaked the draft to Westneat?

  • Realist July 29, 2015 (8:03 pm)

    In every economy, even at the city level, there are winners and losers. Those who didn’t get into single family homes when the price was “right”, and can’t afford a home now are the losers – in this city, at this time. Property owners who paid little in the bleak years of the Carter Economy and played by the rules, are now cashing in their chips. That’s the way it is supposed to work. City government shouldn’t stand in their way.

    As for rentals, if you you are just here for a few years – as many of the young professional crowd are as they work their way up through today’s marketplace of ideas – the rental market is very attractive: Great places with the sort of amenity that today’s achiever class craves. If they choose to put down roots here (which today’s young people are wisely and largely avoiding as a matter of course, regardless of the city) they can still afford a home – even though in all honesty – much of the existing housing stock in Seattle is subpar.

    Seattle is a growing, dynamic place. We can’t be sentimental for the past.

  • west seattle native July 29, 2015 (8:37 pm)

    I wish someone would purpose a bill that every new home/apartment built from here on out needs to have at least one parking spot per unit. Way too many condo’s being built with zero parking.

  • Nora July 29, 2015 (9:34 pm)

    In some ways, this is too bad. I think it was an interesting suggestion/solution for a lack of supply. As a homeowner, the only thing that would sway me from neutral to opposed is making construction of an ADU mandatory on all single family lots. A) Not all lots are big enough to support that kind of density without going vertical. B) Not all homeowners can afford to build an ADU, even if their lot is big enough.

    However, the real problem with affordable housing is that Seattle is growing too fast for the developers to keep up. Demand is increasing faster than supply, and that drives rents up.

    The 150% increases are not likely to be related to market rents, and are part of an only tangentially related discussion.

  • ChefJoe July 29, 2015 (10:04 pm)

    Mr Horse,
    “who pays for this?” – those who pay a property tax bill… indirectly via rent or forgone raise/shareholder revenue at a company or directly by cutting a check to the city twice a year.

  • JC July 29, 2015 (10:13 pm)

    pupsarebest and westseattle native,

    Jody Rushmer is the only candidate for district 1 that is openly against the 35th Ave SW road diet and that openly supports stronger requirements that new buildings have parking spots. Use your vote to influence change if you feel strongly about these issues.

  • wb July 29, 2015 (10:36 pm)

    Many many RESIDENTS of 35th can’t wait for the changes. Your personal freeway time is OVER. Leave your bloated SUVs at home.

  • DevNull July 29, 2015 (10:56 pm)

    For everyone that is supporting higher density in Seattle, does it bother you that Seattle has done nothing to support the infrastructure to provide higher density? An example, we have the Howard hanson reservoir and the Tolt reservoir to supply water to Seattle. We are having a water shortage this year and the City is doing nothing to increase water supply. How can a sane person think that we can continue to add new housing without the proper infrastructure?

  • WS since '66 July 30, 2015 (6:32 am)

    One question for those posting hatred for the Mayor is WTF? You despised him for proposing the plan. Then when he says don’t make the change you still despise him. Face it ANYTHING he does certain people won’t like it.

    In addition, for those complaining about the lack of infrastructure, as in transportation, even with a year overrun we would have enjoyed the trip/commute to Downtown on the monorail (infrastructure) for the last 5 years. Think about that as you are stuck in traffic.

  • phil dirt July 30, 2015 (7:28 am)

    Now that it’s pretty much a done deal, people are starting to wake up over the issue of population density in W. Seattle. It’s too bad there were so many people asleep at the wheel about this and the tunnel, too. The so called Progressives, and the city politicians who enabled the developers, have ruined Seattle. Emmett Watson warned us.

  • Laura July 30, 2015 (7:44 am)

    Tracy, I can’t read the published map very well to see where the zoning changes may happen. Is there a link to a clearer map? As far as the proposal to allow shared housing in single family areas, it’s a shame that’s going out of favor. The Mayor’s sentiment that we are a racially divided city is correct. It would change the flavor of the neighborhoods to open our doors to renters… I’m sure in some part for better as well as for worse… That’s change for you. I, for one, would appreciate the shift to bring about more affordable housing for us all (owners and renters). I think the good would outweigh the bad.

  • JoB July 30, 2015 (8:33 am)

    Do Seattle’s single family zoning prevent people from renting their homes or from renting rooms/suites in their homes?
    well… no
    do the current codes prevent you from parking an RV in your back yard and allowing someone to live in it.. with or without paying rent?
    maybe we should change that which would have the biggest impact on affordable housing instead of the that which would simply divide lot sizes into smaller and smaller parcels with more expensive structures.

  • Kim July 30, 2015 (8:36 am)

    I think this is a shame, and I wrote an email to the Mayor to let him know that I support increasing density for single family zones. It isn’t about creating wall-to-wall apodments. This would have given homeowners the ability to subdivide large lots and/or add accessory dwelling units. This could have increased density to absorb Seattle’s growing population, and given homeowners more flexibility with their properties.

  • Villagegreen July 30, 2015 (8:57 am)

    +1 for Kim. Nothing like reason to cut through the forest of NIMBYs.

  • John July 30, 2015 (9:00 am)

    “does it bother you that Seattle has done nothing to support the infrastructure to provide higher density?”

    Absolutely false.

    Transit increases, light rail, sewer, bridges, tunnels, road improvements, storm run-off, new park facilities, new schools, libraries, fire houses… the list goes on.

    I note that virtually all attempts to increase infrastructure are met with a chorus of complaints from those inconvenienced by the construction of the infrastructure.

    The example of a water shortage is also false.
    The reservoirs are low because of the drought, not from new demand from new housing.
    Our city has no need to increase water supply, as we can access additional water from wells separate from the reservoirs.

    Danny Westneat should be shamed for politicizing the HALA. His “save the bungalows” bury our heads in the sand, all SF neighborhoods be doomed rhetoric was sensational and headline grabbing, altered city politics but offered nothing to solve our problems.

    Mr. Westneat sold his house with apartment ADU across from Lincoln Park (no bungalow) a couple of years ago to ensconce himself in traditionally leafy ‘old white’ Madrona. He is fine with his commute and preaches NIMBYism against newcomers from the safety of his quaint hamlet.

    The mayor made a huge mistake in the manner this was handled. Now he has retreated to kicking the can down the road.

    Seattle is suffering a housing crisis. People are moving here whether we like it or not. We already have too many cars and too much reliance on them. We can build no more roads. Having newcomers commute is not feasible or desirable and just spreads the sprawl to our rural and forest regions.

    Seattle can accommodate more people. The question remains, how can it be done with such false rhetoric and calls to NIMBYism?

    Change is painful, but so will be the pot of water we all are sitting as it slowly comes to a boil.

    • WSB July 30, 2015 (9:36 am)

      Since John mentioned it – not that it is particularly germane to what he writes or doesn’t write, but public records show Westneat sold his Lincoln Park-area house and moved to the north end more than a “few” years ago (2001, to be precise). He interviewed us in the early going, seven years ago, and I didn’t recall him mentioning living over here, so I looked it up. Just a datapoint.

  • Smitty July 30, 2015 (9:00 am)

    ” We can move beyond the legacy of the old boundaries of exclusion that have remained largely unchanged since nearly a century ago when neighborhood covenants were used to keep people of color south of Madison Street.”

    Isn’t Murray’s Capitol Hill home north of Madison?

    Lead by example, my friend. Get the ball rolling…..

  • peter July 30, 2015 (9:10 am)

    This mayor still does not get it. We are all for equality and many of us, who are homeowners, give of our time and effort to help provide housing and assistance for people who are in need. Housing affordability impacts single family homeowners too!

    The HALA report, which the mayor called for and supports, incites division and ‘we/they’ thinking instead of cooperation and working together to solve this issue. It creates opposing groups where they didn’t exist before.

    The HALA report is clearly driven by developers and special interests and clears the way for them to do pretty much anything they want, anywhere they want and anytime they want in Seattle. And in the name of more profit they will destroy the uniqueness and character of Seattle’s neighborhoods and make Seattle a less desirable place to live.

    The HALA report is not a cohesive vision or plan for the growth of Seattle and housing, it is a grab bag of 65 disparate ideas thrown together to make a deadline. It “boils the ocean” instead of prioritizing an actionable set of ideas to guide growth and housing for all Seattle citizens.

    And most irritating to me, the HALA report was put together in secrecy without input from the neighborhoods and people who live in them. Clearly the mayor and HALA team did not want broad community input. They just wanted to ram it down our throats. This seems like a pretty standard method of operation for this mayor, always under the banner of “justice and equality for all”.

    The mayor characterizes the reaction to his position and report with the following statement: “sensationalized reporting by a few media outlets has created a significant distraction and derailed the conversation we need to have on affordability and equity”….So Wrong Mayor…..I read the report, the media coverage is accurate.

    You need to start over, be open and forthright and include ALL Seattle citizens in the creation of a plan to improve housing affordability in and around Seattle.

  • Matt S. July 30, 2015 (9:19 am)

    +1 Kim, +1 Peter. I don’t think the two are mutually exclusive, but that it’s a matter of *how* to accommodate more density, not *if* we should.

  • Bill V July 30, 2015 (10:25 am)

    “This would have given homeowners the ability to subdivide large lots and/or add accessory dwelling units. This could have increased density to absorb Seattle’s growing population, and given homeowners more flexibility with their properties”

    I don’t agree that these are inherently good ideas.

  • John July 30, 2015 (1:12 pm)

    ‘the ability to add accessory dwelling units’.

    You can do this today. I’m adding one to my property and finished one two years ago on another property. Both here in West Seattle. The law has been in affect since Nov./09. All you need is a lot bigger than 4,000 sf. The DADU can’t be larger then 800sf and between the two structure you can’t cover more then 35% of your lot…..very simple.
    It’s a great way to make extra income….and help out with the newbies.

  • FormerlyWestofJunction July 30, 2015 (1:36 pm)

    I’m so glad I moved away from this Circus! I can’t believe they dredge up old, moldy issues – restricted covenants existed not only in this city but all over the U.S.! Can anyone live in Windermere or View Ridge now? Yes, if they can afford it. Ditto for Ballard and White Center (yes, White Center had restrictive covenants, also).
    Seattle was great because of its single family homes atmosphere.
    Good luck with the traffic, and any commute that is not in and out of the DT core during regular business hours.
    Our pols are more interested in cramming more and more people into “affordable” housing rather than good transit options so folks can have a home and a yard, even if it is outside the city.

  • Ruby S. July 30, 2015 (2:18 pm)

    The worst outcome for Murray and truly a dumb move. He appointed a committee that came up with stuff lesser Seattle doesn’t like. He then back peddles when greater Seattle was excited.

  • Ruby S. July 30, 2015 (2:21 pm)

    Danny westneat and the West Seattle blog are both old Seattle garbage.

    • WSB July 30, 2015 (2:31 pm)

      Ruby, we’re middle-aged, but I don’t think you can call us old yet, sorry.

  • Peter July 30, 2015 (2:31 pm)

    @WS since ’66: I can’t speak for others, but my disdain for the mayor on this issue stems from the fact that he announced this as a grand solution and then apparently backpedaled furiously after it was met with vocal outcry. He didn’t have the (whatevers) to stick to his principles if he thought this was such a great solution for the city. In other words: spineless. Either he thought he could sneak this past the general population with little scrutiny, or someone(s) in his office didn’t do sufficient research to gauge what the popular reaction would be. The former is dishonest and the latter inept. None of those attributes are going to win admiration from me.

    BTW: I pre-date you by about a decade :)

  • FormerlyWestofJunction July 30, 2015 (2:33 pm)

    RubyS – Way to go – skip rational debate, refuse to see other points of view, and just trash the folks you disagree with.

  • Peter July 30, 2015 (2:36 pm)

    @Ruby: Then why are you here?

  • Bradley July 30, 2015 (2:49 pm)

    @Ruby: I hear NYC’s uber-dense Manhattan is lovey this time of year. Perhaps you’re just living in the wrong place for your tastes? They have a mayor there who REALLY doesn’t listen to his constituents, too. It’s just that us long-time West Seattle residents don’t want this place turning into a mini-Manhattan, and Mr. Westneat is a hero now to many of us.

  • Matt S. July 30, 2015 (2:55 pm)

    @Ruby S.: You seem like a real darling.

  • Erithan July 30, 2015 (5:45 pm)

    I’m sure it’s been said, but anyone else wish they’d just regulate the developers to not way over-price apartments/condos? x.x Especially ones that were bought out from under people?

    The cost of living % here should say a lot about how things are going alone.=(

    So many people who made Seattle what it is have been forced out it’s sad. *sigh* Sim City should not be used to make decisions….*coughs*

    granted, if it’s being used and you cheat for no natural disasters you can ignore the landfill issue and dig that tunnel!
    <—notes not to mind the bitter over heated person…
    (feel free to delete if to out of context)

  • michelle July 30, 2015 (6:13 pm)

    I LOVE West Seattle! There are alot of hard working good people that choose to live here. Thanks for everyone speaking out to protect our beautiful West Seattle. If they do not respect the core of the people here it will go down hill. I would never want that as we have a awesome livable and wonderful neighborhood.

  • BJG July 30, 2015 (10:13 pm)

    We have an MIL next door, across the street, and two houses down in our SF neighborhood. Legal or not, they are already here. Betting they are in your neighborhoods too. Just reporting the new reality.

  • BobDaBuilder July 31, 2015 (4:48 am)

    Folks, just as a reminder, we have district
    elections. On the record, ask your candidates
    their position on this subject. Pro/Con.

    With this new political reality which the mayor
    oddly did not account for, the HALA committee
    should be reformed with one rep selected from
    the various neighborhood groups in each district.
    So 7 from each district and 2 at-large. Total 9.
    So, you have three groups: Developers, housing
    advocates, and neighborhood reps. Lovely time
    they have spending many meeting together.

    Food for thought: I am pretty versed in land use
    and code and I will try to translate.
    1. 10 min walk from rapid transit corridors or urban village means about one mile radius increase. So, you see all those green areas,
    expand it one mile out. 6%? Right. Expanded
    one mile out and let’s see what it equals to.
    2. This in turn will mean no parking or reduced
    parking requirements. Lowrise 1, L1, you can easy build 3-4 unit “townhomes” with no parking per standard single family 5000 sqft lot.
    3. Parking will be a nightmare and parking will be
    pushed out further and further.
    4. Remember, the government loves revenue aka
    taxes. 4 townhomes x 400K >>. 1 sf home 600k.
    Property tax.

  • artsea July 31, 2015 (10:46 am)

    Could someone please tell me why Seattle MUST make more housing available? How will we benefit by constantly making room for more and more people to move here? All this growth seems to be diminishing the quality of life here. I must be stupid.

  • Matt S. July 31, 2015 (11:46 am)

    @artsea: My impression is that it’s a balancing act: growth is good because it brings jobs, a flourishing economy, a more diverse group of people (read: restaurants!) and stability—and on the other end it challenges infrastructure, identity, etc. I think what we’re witnessing now are unavoidable growing pains.
    It’s not that Seattle *must* make more housing available, but that growth is inevitable and we have to figure out *how* to embrace that reality. Some will resist change, others will try to capitalize on it—you know, just people being people. The more we can agree on, the better off we’ll all probably be.

  • Kimmy July 31, 2015 (1:34 pm)

    Bummer! I thought his proposal was pretty weak, but no change at all is really lame.

  • John August 3, 2015 (8:50 am)

    A major reason it was decided decades ago to make more housing available in the city was to reduce urban sprawl that had already become problematic for the region as a whole. Closing up the city and allowing unlimited rural growth would have destroyed the region’s most famous elements while absolutely grid-locking Seattle with suburban single occupancy commuters.

    If we do not allow more housing, Seattle will become even more unaffordable. Rental and purchase prices follow the law of supply and demand, excess demand = higher prices.

  • vin August 14, 2015 (8:23 am)

    good comment DEV NULL. WAKE UP PEOPLE WEST SEATTLE is getting over built. how many green lawns do you see in W.S. may be 1-2 in upscale neighborhoods. take a look at your public utility bill, Take a good look at your city light bill if they are estimating it, and not reading the meter they are ripping you off and overcharging you. It
    use to be every building had to provide adequate parking per unit. Now the city more units less parking. more Bicycle PARKING, Not Everyone in W.S. wants to pedal a bicycle, Those red light cameras are netting the city of Seattle $1,000,000 a month, what are they doing with that money, I think the mayor’s plan is more about revenue for the CITY OF SEATTLE, BIG BERTHA AND THE TUNNEL,WHAT A JOKE$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

Sorry, comment time is over.