DEVELOPMENT: What happened at West Seattle’s second-ever Early Design Community Outreach meeting

The second West Seattle project to have an early-stage meeting as part of the city’s new Early Design Community Outreach process is 5616 California SW, proposed for eight townhouses to replace a 93-year-old house. As was the case for the first West Seattle project in the process, 1772 Alki SW, the meeting for this one drew a single-digit turnout – three community members. Two representatives of Cone Architecture talked with the three attendees for an hour at the 4 pm Monday meeting in the community room at High Point Library. They said they had sent postcards to nearby residents, as required by the city, including a URL for an online survey about the project, but that had only drawn one response.

One of the attendees, Jim Guenther, suggested it might have been a bigger draw if the project team instead had planned an open house at C & P Coffee (WSB sponsor), which is next to the project site. (The architects said their firm has been talking with C & P about the project.) The talk was almost as much about the process as the project; one of the other attendees was Deb Barker, president of the Morgan Community Association and retired land-use planner, who suggested that 4 pm on a weekday was not a time many could work with.

The architects did show “massing” renderings for three possible ways the townhouses could be arranged on the site. They also explained that the project is strictly residential, though the site could have had a commercial component too, and that it has five parking spaces because that’s all that’s required given its proximity to “frequent transit” (RapidRide stops nearby). They also said the “exceptional tree” on the site is staying – “we have embraced and want to” protect it. Barker suggested that impervious surface be minimized on the site.

If you’re interested in the project but couldn’t get to the meeting or hadn’t heard about it, you’ll have another chance to comment when the design proposal becomes officially available for Administrative Design Review (no public meetings in that part of the process but the city will announce it in the Land Use Information Bulletin).

(LATE-NIGHT P.S.: Since we published this, a third West Seattle project has been added to the Early Outreach list – 5009 Fauntleroy Way SW, three rowhouse units and three single-family houses. No meeting date yet.)

1 Reply to "DEVELOPMENT: What happened at West Seattle's second-ever Early Design Community Outreach meeting"

  • WS Resident September 19, 2018 (7:09 am)

    Totally agree with Deb Barker’s comment. If community input is desired meetings should be scheduled when the community can attend and not during the day when most are at work and not available.

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