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Ecodistrict forum to present plans for a green(er) Hill, new ‘sustainable communities’ leader

It’s so green (Image: Portland Sustainability Institute)

By the end of 2012, Capitol Hill will be home to one of the lowest energy commercial office buildings in the world. But the Bullitt Foundation isn’t stopping its green aspirations for Capitol Hill with one project at 15th and Madison. This week, Capitol Hill Housing is holding a workshop to introduce a new director and gather the neighborhood’s business, design and community leaders to discuss ideas for a neighborhood “ecodistrict” that could transform areas around Broadway and Pike/Pine into a more sustainable, healthier place to live — UPDATE: CHH tells us that David Dologite will not be in attendance at this week’s forum.

Capitol Hill Housing and the Capitol Hill Chamber of Commerce cordially invite you to a first glimpse at the research that CHH has been spearheading into establishing an EcoDistrict on Capitol Hill.   

Capitol Hill is already one of the greenest neighborhoods in the Pacific Northwest with a long history of commitment to environmental sustainability.  In the midst of the climate (and related) crises, Capitol Hill can be a leader in taking local action to meet our global (and local) environmental challenges.  Many of you are already demonstrating that leadership. 

Thanks to the Bullitt Foundation’s generous financial support, we now have a chance to integrate environmental sustainability into our economic and community development work and further our vision of a vibrant, engaged and affordable community.  We are excited to share our initial ideas with you and get your feedback.  Help us shape this initiative and our community engagement process going forward.  


  6:00pm Welcome and Overview


6:10pm Capitol Hill Housing’s motivation and vision for a Capitol Hill EcoDistrict 

6:20pm GGLO Presentation

                What is an EcoDistrict?

                Best practices

                What does an EcoDistrict mean for Capitol Hill?

6:45pm Breakout Sessions

7:30pm Report Back and Concluding Remarks

Food and beverages will be provided.

When: Wednesday, December 14, 2011 6:00 PM-8:00 PM

Where: Seattle University Alumni and Admissions Building – 12th and Marion

CHS reported earlier on the $50,000 Bullitt grant that is helping to power the study of potential greening of the areas around Capitol Hill’s light rail station. While the station won’t be operational until 2016, the work underway on the station an the coming “transit oriented development” as well as upcoming work on the Broadway streetcar line provides near-term opportunities to piggyback the work with infrastructure changes in the area.

David Dologite (Image: Capitol Hill Housing)

For a real-world, real-Pacific Northwest example of ecodistrict development, you probably won’t be surprised for us to point you to portland. The Portland Sustainability Institute has been active in creating several pilot districts. In addition to green building and retrofitting, Portland’s ecodistrticts often include green street projects with vegetation to capture and clean rain water runoff. The projects also invest in community efforts to promote sustainability practices with residents and businesses.

While the goals of a Seattle ecodistrict effort will be popular with many, efforts related to creating affordable housing won’t diminish in importance anytime soon. The Seattle Planning Commission’s findings in a just released report on Seattle housing are discussed here on the Seattle Transit Blog.

To help bring these plans to fruition, Capitol Hill Housing has hired new director of real estate David Dologite. In addition to replacing Betsy Hunter in that role, Dologite’s purview also includes development of “sustainable communities.”

“I am thrilled to get involved with Capitol Hill Housing and the larger affordable housing community in Seattle,” Dologite said in CHH’s statement on the hire. “In getting to know the organization, I am impressed with CHH’s focus on developing affordable apartments within a neighborhood context and as assets for the broader community.”

Dologite comes to CHH from San Francisco where he oversaw affordable housing developments for the Tenderloin Neighborhood Development Corporation.

According to CHH, Dologite will also be “deeply involved” in the transit oriented development effort at the Broadway light rail station.

In addition to the ecodistrict work, CHH’s 2012 will be dedicated to the ongoing capital campaign to build the 12th Ave Arts development.

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3 thoughts on “Ecodistrict forum to present plans for a green(er) Hill, new ‘sustainable communities’ leader

  1. Over the course of next year we will be holding a wide variety of EcoDistrict related open community forums and presentations targetted at specific groups. The forum this week is invite only and requires an RSVP. The activities at the forum will be structured around a specific number of people pre-assigned to break out groups. If you are interested in more information about the Capitol Hill EcoDistrict or would like an invitation to a future forum, please contact me at abrennan (at) capitolhillhousing (dot) org.