It seems ironic that in the midst of Seattle’s booming urban growth the big complaints about it would be coming from Seattle’s most urban of neighborhoods, Capitol Hill.
But angst is palpable, even in a neighborhood that has mostly embraced change. A recent Capitol Hill Housing Community Forum took “There Goes the Neighborhood” as its theme. — Knute Berger, “Capitol Hill confronts change” via Crosscut
All well and good — except, well, you missed some punctuation, Knute.
The essayist — who was also part of the forum and, by our count, restrained himself to remind the audience he was born in Seattle less than a dozen times — ruminates on Capitol Hill’s current state of worry. “The Bauhaus project looms, B&O Espresso has fled to Ballard, and the Egyptian Theater is closing. There are worries that cheap retail space is being replaced by pricey new space, endangering small, funky, local businesses,” he writes.
But the theme of the session was, actually, “There goes the neighborhood?” — a question leaving open the possibility that Capitol Hill is doing just fine, thank you very much, or at least will survive no matter how many mixed-use projects spring up across it. CHS wrote about the discussion here — 2013 Capitol Hill Housing forum by the numbers — Build more, regulate it
Berger’s essay ends with a more philosophical solution for his vision of angst-y Capitol Hill. “Rapid change is part of our culture,” Berger consoles. “Capitol Hill, and Seattle, must face what seems like a tricky contradiction: Embrace the change and stand our ground, at the same time.” In other words, build more, regulate it.