Seattle City Council
3/22/2006 5:51:00 PM
Stephanie Pure (206) 684-8804
DOWNTOWN LIVABILITY PLAN MOVES FORWARD
A livable downtown plan goes to a Full Council vote on April 3rd
SEATTLE –Peter Steinbrueck’s downtown livability plan passed the Urban Development and Planning Committee this afternoon and will receive its final vote Monday, April 3rd at the 2:00 p.m. in the Full Council meeting.
“I am so pleased and grateful for the Council’s engagement,” said Councilmember Peter Steinbrueck, chair of the Committee. “This has been a very complex process over many months. The outcome of all this will encourage the development of a vibrant urban downtown neighborhood that attracts a wide variety of residents, including families.”
Councilmember Tom Rasmussen introduced an amendment for a graduated structure for the affordable housing bonus for residential towers that would charge a higher amount per square foot on the top floors.
“This approach will develop an amount to be charged for the affordable housing fund that will not be burdensome for developers,” said Rasmussen. Council staff will spend the next few days working on the graduated formula that will result in an average bonus fee of between 17 and 19 dollars per net square foot. The final numbers were not fixed at today’s meeting.
Two resolutions proposed by Councilmember Steinbrueck also passed. One outlines actions the city will take to improve the livability of Center City neighborhoods. The other calls for locating a large public open space in Belltown and expansion of the Green Street program to include an exploration of the feasibility of greenspaces. Councilmember Richard Conlin proposed amendments setting parameters for an open space action plan, maintaining the current commercial floor plate size and requiring a percentage of building open space to be at street level and publicly accessible. "These code changes also move toward a liveable downtown for all—with usable space, well-designed buildings and dedicated funding for low income housing," said Conlin.
Rasmussen also proposed a successful amendment permitting lots smaller than 30,000 square feet to have an additional floor of above-grade parking. The amendment allows a fourth floor of parking above-grade. Screening parking garages is required in the initial proposal.