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Fight for Public Open Space in the U District Up Zone

Comments Due Friday, July 15th

The City of Seattle welcomes your comments on their proposed rezone of the U District from the current heights of 65' up to 320' (as tall as UW Tower) throughout the core of the neighborhood. The image above illustrates roughly what might occur after the rezone.

We support greater densities to accommodate Seattle's growth as long as we can grow responsibly, equitably, and sustainably. A central public space is an essential piece of the future U District, which currently has a 5 acre (2 city blocks) deficit of open space. The current version of the rezone proposal does not sufficiently address this need.

From over a decade of outreach, our community has consistently set the 'highest priority' for open space as a central town square in the heart of the district, near the pending light rail station. We have collected thousands of votes for such a space over the past 5 years.

We appreciate the proposed incentives in the rezone proposal, offered to property owners and developers that might result in the creation of a central town square, but by themselves, they are insufficient as a guarantee. What happens in our district may set a precedent for future neighborhoods so we should do our best to get it right.

The consensus is that we must first identify an appropriate site, and then implement a funding strategy to develop this community asset together. The rezone is our best opportunity to create a dense, livable environment for all, in exchange for substantially-taller buildings. We do not endorse the proposal in its current version and encourage you to submit your comments:

Friday, July 15th - by midnight

To ask questions or provide comments about the U District ReZone draft proposal, please email udistrict@seattle.gov by Friday.