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City of Seattle
Gregory J. Nickels (former Mayor)

SUBJECT: Affordable homes slated for Belltown and Central District

12/15/2005  9:00:00 AM
Todd Burley  (206) 684-5081

Affordable homes slated for Belltown and Central District

Projects include community center and artist space

Note: For information on renting a Pantages apartment, call (206) 329-7303

SEATTLE – Mayor Greg Nickels announced $5.1 million today to help build 85 apartments for homeless families and low-income workers in the Belltown and Hiawatha neighborhoods.

"Having a roof over your head isn’t a luxury, it is a necessity," Nickels said. "Whether you are a family struggling to stay off the streets or a service worker struggling to make ends meet, these projects will help keep housing within reach for those who need it most."

The Belltown View Apartments project will create 25 units above a new Belltown Community Center. Seattle Parks and Recreation is contributing $1.7 million to the overall $11 million development price tag to make the community center a reality.

"Seattle Parks and Recreation has been working for some time with the community and the Low Income Housing Institute to find a suitable location for a new community center in Belltown," said Ken Bounds, Seattle Parks and Recreation Superintendent. "This funding will enable us to move forward with plans to create a great new gathering place for the Belltown community."

Five of the units in the new Belltown View Apartments will be for formerly homeless families participating in the Sound Families Initiative. The project also includes one level of underground parking, new LIHI offices, and a Housing Resources Center – which will serve as a public access point for low-income housing information and assistance. Money for the Resources Center is being provided by Seattle’s Human Services Department.

"Belltown has the highest rents of any neighborhood in Seattle. Our new housing will enable the typical downtown office and service worker to be able to live near their place of employment," said LIHI Executive Director Sharon Lee. "LIHI is also happy to be partnering with the Parks Department on the Belltown Community Center, a long-awaited gathering place that is so needed in this vibrant neighborhood."

The Hiawatha Artist Lofts will provide 60 live-work homes for Seattle’s creative workforce, targeting those making anywhere from minimum wage to $32,700 for a single-person household. The Artspace Projects, Inc. development will also bring art to the community via retail and gallery space on the ground floor.

"Artspace is thrilled to be working on our second project in Seattle," said Artspace Regional Director Cathryn Vandenbrink. "Tashiro Kaplan, also funded by the City, is home to 50 artists and their families, 12 galleries, 13 working studios a coffee shop and new home for 4 Culture. We have over 200 artists on the waiting list so are anxious to provide more space for Seattle's creative workforce."

The 85 new units of affordable housing announced this morning add to more than 120 units of affordable housing opening today in Seattle:

  • 49 apartments inside the newly opened Pantages Apartments. Eleven of the units are funded by Sound Families to help homeless families become more self-sufficient. Another ten units are funded by the Seattle Housing Authority and are replacements for Holly Park.

  • Housing for up to 75 homeless individuals at 1811 Eastlake. Seattle Housing Authority provided 25 Section 8 vouchers to help with this project that reaches out to the chronically homeless struggling with long-term addictions.

Visit the mayor’s web site at Get the mayor’s inside view on initiatives to promote transportation, public safety, economic opportunity and healthy communities by signing up for The Nickels Newsletter at

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