History of Participatory Budgeting in Seattle

Participatory Budgeting is a democratic process that was first developed in Brazil in 1989 and is now practiced in over 3,000 cities around the world, including Chicago, Boston, New York, and San Francisco. Participatory budgeting focuses on engaging people who have not historically been involved in government or budget processes and lets community members directly decide how to spend part of a public budget.

The initiative began in Seattle in July 2015 when former Mayor Ed Murray and former Councilmember Nick Licata announced the launch of a citywide youth participatory budgeting process called Youth Voice, Youth Choice.

In 2017, the program was opened up to involve all Seattle residents. $2 million of the City's budget was set aside for Your Voice, Your Choice: Parks and Streets, which wraps in what was previously known as our Neighborhood Park and Street Fund. Each of Seattle's seven council districts voted on how to spend $285,000 for small-scale improvements to streets and parks within their district. These projects will be included in the Mayor's 2018 proposed budget, and work will begin in 2018.

Learn About 2017 Projects

In 2017, community members from all over the city submitted nearly 900 project ideas, which were narrowed down to 10 per City Council district by Project Development Teams. Each Council district selected their top projects amounting up to $285,000 per district. These projects will be included in the Mayor's 2018 proposed budget, and work will begin in 2018.

Voter Guides

The Your Voice, Your Choice: Parks & Streets Voter Guides contain detailed information on each individual project that was on the ballot. The guides provide cost breakdowns, images, and proposed solutions that will help familiarize you with each project in your council district.

District 1 Voter Guide
District 2 Voter Guide
District 3 Voter Guide
District 4 Voter Guide
District 5 Voter Guide
District 6 Voter Guide
District 7 Voter Guide

Project Map

View a map of the final status of all ideas submitted in 2017: 2017 Ideas Collected Map.