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Capitol Hill’s Holy Names hopes changes to underground parking plan help move project forward

A rendering of the new gym planned to sit atop the controversial underground parking at Holy Names

Some neighbors continue to oppose the project but Holy Names Academy is hoping changes to its plan for a new five-level underground parking garage and a new surface parking lot on its North Capitol Hill campus will help move the project forward with city planners.

In a letter sent to neighbors of the private, all-girls high school, the academy announced it was eliminating plans for an entrance to the underground garage on 21st Ave, a city greenway route, and moving the planned new gym and garage “slightly to the east” to preserve more of the existing lawn and green space. CHS first reported on the proposal here in January.

“One of the issues raised about our proposed Project concerned the compatibility of the Greenway on 21st Avenue with a Garage entrance/exit on that street,” head of school Liz Swift tells CHS about the latest changes.

“As a result, we asked our architects and consultants to explore the possibility of eliminating that driveway. We were pleased to learn that this was feasible with some modifications to our original design,” she writes.

Swift also is touting a study for the school by Heffron Transportation, “a highly regarded group of traffic engineers who focus on both public and private schools,” that she says helps show the planned parking will address the needs of its 31% of faculty, staff, and students who drive to the campus “and also remove traffic (and carbon emissions) from neighboring streets, since people will not need to drive around, looking for a parking place.”

Meanwhile, the school’s quest for a master use permit for the project from the city remains under review and a solid bank of neighborhood opposition remains — in June, a petition with around 100 signatures was submitted to city planners as part of the public comment process.

Holy Names enrolls around 700 students and already completed a recent 9,000 square-foot addition to its beautiful dome-capped northern Capitol Hill campus. Its quest for better parking solutions for those 700 students and their parents is likely a harbinger for similar needs at nearby St. Joseph School.

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13 thoughts on “Capitol Hill’s Holy Names hopes changes to underground parking plan help move project forward

  1. What a bunch of jerk neighbors. Holy Names has been here longer than any of us and is a first rate high school with very well behaved young women. The neighbors are lucky to have Holy Names as neighbor and not a public high school full of kids with behavior problems. Maybe these spoiled neighbors should spend their advocacy time working to get heroin, meth and bums off our streets. There are addicts living in junk RVs on 15th AVE E next to Vol Park. There’s a bunch of very serious, acute problems facing Seattle but these jerk neighbors want to prevent HNA from improving its facilities and alleviate street parking. Probably the same scum who voted in Sawant.

    • Re “Holy Names has been here longer than any of us”: have you heard of Native Americans? Or do they not count as people to you? Also, do the “very well behaved young women” call Sawant supporters “scum”? I won’t be continuing this conversation with you, except to say I’d rather talk to a Russian bot.

    • A+ trolling post. It has all the elements….it’s *chef’s kiss* I’m impressed.

      If this is a real post, whoa.

  2. The changes the school has made do not in any way alleviate or even address the serious concerns raised by neighbors, as set forth in the written Petition submitted to Holy Names in April 2018, signed by over 100 families including many long-term neighbors who live North of Aloha, South of Aloha, and East and West of the school. The peition showed overwhelming disapproval of the school’s current plans. Working contructively and colloraboratively to find a path forward which takes the the Petition’s sentiments into consideration is far more important to the school’s legacy than force-feeding a 5-level out-of-touch garage, because you can, and ruining a beautiful park of the North side of he school, so you can park bright yellow buses there, which is wholly unneccesary and a blight. So much for neighborly love.

    • You say they are “ruining a beautiful park of the North side of the school.” You do realize that the Holy Names property is private, not public, right? And it’s great to hear the concerns of neighbors and address some of those concerns, but as long as they follow the city permitting process, why can’t they do what they want on their property? I understand that a lot of neighbors wish that things wouldn’t change, but when one of my neighbors paints their house some horrible color, I really can’t say much.

  3. Here we go again with the Holy Names thread. LOL. Grab the popcorn as you read about adults acting like children. People patting themselves on the back, yelling at others. Always a good read.

  4. I simply do not understand why the neighbors would oppose this parking garage. Will it not take a significant number of cars off the surrounding streets, and make for more available street parking?

    I do think it’s a shame that the green space at the north side of the property will be eliminated, but after all that is private property and HNA can do what they want with it.

    • C’mon Bob, how do you think cars get to the garage? They’re obviously worried it will increase the incentive to drive if the commuters don’t have to worry about parking in the street. It’s not wrong – studies have shown that when you increase such infrastructure, more people use it.

      • Call me skeptical, but in this case I doubt there will be more daily car trips as a result of the new garage. Street parking is available now for car commuters, so I don’t think anyone has to “worry about parking in the street.” Those who are currently parking on the street will park in the garage instead, opening up street spaces for residents and their guests.