With a change for a key area of the city, the Seattle City Council Monday was able to approve legislation hoped to put its design and landmarks review processes back into motion even as COVID-19 restrictions continue to make standard public meetings impossible.
CHS reported here on the proposal from Mayor Jenny Durkan’s office to move important reviews from citizen boards to city staff while continuing the public comment process through email and written feedback in a bid to jumpstart dozens of development projects including much needed housing. Last week, the council hit a bump trying to get the streamlining approved as it fell short of the necessary votes for the emergency change.
Monday, the legislation passed, gaining the vote of South Seattle’s Tammy Morales as the council member added an amendment that will exempt projects in the International District’s “special review” area over concerns that the community there would not be adequately represented in virtual meetings. West Seattle’s Lisa Herbold continued to oppose the bill over concerns about lack of citizen oversight on low income housing projects and the University District’s Andrew Lewis also voted no after his amendment failed that would have forced super green “Living Building” pilot projects to pass through the full Design Review Board process.
CHS looked at many of the Capitol Hill-area development paused during COVID-19 restrictions here.
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