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Seattle Urban Renewal Timeline

Urban Renewal Timeline

See the Projects page for timelines of individual projects.

  • 1949: Congress passes the Housing Act of 1949
  • January 1954: Planning Commission submits report on proposed 1954 Urban Renewal Act (Clerk File 225993)
  • August 1954: Congress passes Housing Act of 1954
  • March 7, 1957: Washington's Urban Renewal Law passes, enabling cities to participate in the federal urban renewal program
  • September 17, 1957: City Council passes Ordinance 86463, finding that "blighted areas" as defined by the Urban Renewal Law exist in the City of Seattle and creating the City's urban renewal program
  • December 23, 1957: City Council passes Ordinance 86767, authorizing urban renewal coordinator position and advisory committee
  • January 1958: Talbot Wegg is appointed as the city's first Urban Renewal Coordinator
  • March 10, 1958: Kenneth B. Colman appointed chairman of the Citizen's Advisory Committee on Urban Renewal
  • November 1958: Citizen's Advisory Committee on Urban Renewal incorporates as the Seattle Urban Renewal Enterprise (SURE)
  • July 1958: The city's first Workable Program is approved by City Council and submitted to federal authorities (Clerk File 234996)
  • March 30, 1959: Ordinance 88069 adopts Seattle's first Minimum Housing Code
  • May 1959: Ordinance 88230 is passed, authorizing new positions in the Building Department to enforce the Minimum Housing Code
  • September 1959: Ordinance 88664 adopts the 1959 Workable Program 
  • November 1960: Resolution 18692 adopts the 1960-61 Workable Program 
  • January 1962: Resolution 19068 adopts the 1962 Workable Program
  • February 1963: State Supreme Court rules that urban renewal is constitutional in the State of Washington
  • June 1963: Resolution 19552 adopts the 1963 Workable Program 
  • August 1964: Resolution 19940 adopts the 1964 Workable Program 
  • October 1965: Resolution 20387 adopts the 1965 Workable Program 
  • September 1966: A study of group attitudes of urban renewal in Seattle is prepared for SURE
  • 1967: Ten-year systemic housing code compliance program established within the Building Department, administered by the Division of Housing Conservation and Building Abatement
  • June 1967: Resolution 21088 adopts the 1967 Workable Program
  • December 1967: City of Seattle is designated as a recipient of a Model Cities grant
  • February 1968: Forward Thrust bond issue passes
  • August 1968: Federal Housing Act is amended to provide for the Neighborhood Development Program (NDP)
  • September 1968: Resolution 21652 adopts the 1968 Workable Program 
  • November 1968: City begins to study areas to include in NDP application
  • February 1969: Department of Community Development is formed, assuming the responsibilities of the City Planning Commission staff and the Urban Renewal Program, previously a division of the Executive Department
  • July 1969: Resolution 22100 adopts the 1969 Workable Program 
  • September 1971: Resolution 23255 adopts the 1971 Workable Program
  • February 1973: Resolution 24006 authorizes an application to federal government to fund a survey and planning effort in the Mann-Minor neighborhood; the federal government advises the City not to apply due to a lack of program funds available
  • January 1974: Resolution 24449 adopts the 1973 Workable Program
  • August 1974: Congress passes the Housing and Community Development Act, ending the federal Urban Renewal and Model Cities programs

Municipal Archives, City Clerk

Anne Frantilla, City Archivist
Address: 600 Fourth Avenue, Third Floor, Seattle, WA, 98104
Mailing Address: PO Box 94728, Seattle, WA, 98124-4728
Phone: (206) 684-8353
archives@seattle.gov

The Office of the City Clerk maintains the City's official records, provides support for the City Council, and manages the City's historical records through the Seattle Municipal Archives. The Clerk's Office provides information services to the public and to City staff.