Equity, sustainability, and maybe a ‘superblock’ — Capitol Hill business owner is new EcoDistrict leader

Moodie at a conference with Capitol Hill business owners discussing the COVID-19 impact earlier this month (Image: CHS)

By Andrew LaChapelle, UW News Lab/Special to CHS

There are other problems in the world — and opportunities to address them — beyond COVID-19. Donna Moodie, a longtime Seattle restaurateur and owner of 14th and Union’s Marjorie, is already thinking about how to solve them.

Moodie took the helm as executive director of the Capitol Hill EcoDistrict program to start 2020.

Her organization is dedicated to equity and sustainability.

“I’ve been really inspired with the youth movement, trying to be more aware of the state we are leaving things in for the next generations to come,” Moodie said. Continue reading

How $150K ‘Public Life Study’ could be start of creating a Capitol Hill pedestrian and bike-only superblock

It took two decades of community planning to guide the affordable housing and community space-rich “transit oriented development” set to open above Capitol Hill Station in 2020. Proponents hope a new community-driven plan will play out faster to grow the neighborhood’s Capitol Hill EcoDistrict and — ultimately — create a pedestrian-and cyclist-first “superblock” in the middle of the neighborhood.

The start of this new “Public Life” plan began this summer in Copenhagen and will, officials hope, take a small, $150,000 step forward this fall as the Seattle City Council puts its touches on the city’s next fiscal budget. The discussion will begin Friday in council chambers.

“It’s about focusing on the EcoDistrict to make it more pedestrian friendly and a model for sustainability,” citywide representative Lorena González tells CHS about her proposal to add funding for a “Public Life Study” of Capitol Hill and the longterm hopes for the plan to shape the neighborhood: Continue reading

Citywide rep González part of Capitol Hill EcoDistrict delegation on ‘sustainable, urban strategies’ European field trip

(Image: @cmlgonzalez)

To break the the mayor’s veto of the Seattle City Council’s Sweetened Beverage Tax revenue plan, citywide council member Lorena González had to make an international phone call in the middle of the night to cast her decisive vote Monday afternoon Seattle time.

Turns out, González is abroad this week studying “sustainable, urban strategies” thanks to the Capitol Hill EcoDistrict.

The council member is part of a huge delegation, according to Capitol Hill Housing which started the EcoDistrict effort in 2013 with funding from The Bullitt Foundation to increase sustainability efforts in the neighborhood.  Continue reading

Sustainability by the glass as Footprint Wine Tap opens on E Madison

Footprint Wine Tap — “Seattle’s first sustainable keg wine on tap bar” — is now open on Capitol Hill.

CHS first introduced you earlier this year to Seattle wine expert Kenneth Dillon and his plan to overhaul a shuttered E Madison beer tap concept into a new experiment in wine enjoyment and retail.

The sustainability-focused Footprint has set out to feature a wide selection of sustainably sourced, organic, or biodynamic wines from mostly local wineries with pours from kegs available on tap to cut down on waste and, some say, provide a better product. Continue reading

Net-zero energy project will connect to an uprooted house behind Broadway Hill Park

Screen Shot 2016-08-08 at 4.32.59 PMWe have seen old houses relocated to make space for a new apartment building, but linking the two structures to create a single property may be a first on Capitol Hill. Retrofitting the house and designing the new apartment building to meet some of the strictest environmental standards in the U.S. is definitely a first.

The unique plans for 11th and Republican Passive House Apartments faces another round of design review Wednesday night. The outcome of the meeting also carries a special significance for the neighborhood as the building will serve as the new backdrop to the recently opened Broadway Hill Park.

(Image: CHS)

(Image: CHS)

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On Bullitt Center’s first Earth Day birthday, greenest office building on Capitol Hill (and beyond) has more to prove

(Images: Suzi Pratt for CHS)

(Images: Suzi Pratt for CHS)

Powered by the sun -- complete with outdoor ping pong table

Powered by the sun — complete with outdoor ping pong table

It’s hard to believe that Capitol Hill’s Bullitt Center, considered the greenest commercial building in the world, has anything left to prove on sustainability. But a year after the building’s Earth Day opening, the Bullitt Foundation is setting its sights on perhaps the most rigorous green certification in the world.

The International Living Building Institute awards the Living Building certificate to structures that essentially operate as living organisms — one that is sufficient for water and energy and actively promotes the health of its occupants and surrounding environment.

“It just provides a framework for sustainability in the building and shows the world what we’re trying to achieve,” said Bullitt’s Brad Kahn.

The solar-powered, rainwater-capturing Bullitt Center has certainly pushed the boundaries on engineering environmental sustainability, but sustaining tenants is proving to be a bit trickier. The reason the $18.5 million building hasn’t received the Living Building designation yet is because occupancy during its first year has remained below 85% (an important target as the environmental impact of an unoccupied building would be fairly minimal). Continue reading

Capitol Hill’s Bullitt Center recognized as ‘the most sustainable building in the world’

(Image: Bullitt Center)

(Image: Bullitt Center)

One of the most important Capitol Hill stories of 2013 was the Earth Day opening of The Bullitt Center at 15th and Madison — the greenest commercial office building in the world. The Center’s designers — The Miller Hull Partnership — are celebrating an important recognition to finish the year.

Here’s an email from The Bullitt Foundation’s Denis Hayes about the $18.5 million center’s latest accolades:

In a December 18th email, I alerted many of you that World Architecture News had selected the Bullitt Center as one of six finalists — and the only finalist from the United States — in its annual contest for the most sustainable building in the world. To be included in that elite group was, by itself, a singular honor.

Tonight I am delighted to announce that the judging has been completed and the Bullitt Center has been selected as #1 in the world! Continue reading

Super sustainable Bullitt Center adds Hammer & Hand to tenant roster

Moving into the temporary space on the 4th floor (Images: Hammer & Hand)

Moving into the temporary space on the 4th floor (Images: Hammer & Hand)

A construction company with a progressive bent is the latest tenant to join 15th and Madison’s environmentally-focused Bullitt Center.

Hammer & Hand builds commercial and residential projects in the Pacific Northwest including restaurant buildouts –Portland’s Xico — and Seattle’s first Passive House construction.

In a blog post announcing the move, the company said it has already moved into temporary space in the building as its second-floor offices are finished:

Our space will be Suite 250, located on the second floor (which becomes the ground floor along Madison.)  Nancy Burfiend of NB Design Group is the interior designer and Steve Doub of the Miller Hull Partnership is the architect for our TI (tenant improvement) of the space.  As work progresses over the next couple of months we’ll use temporary desk space on the fourth floor.

bullitt-center-move-02The $18.5 million Bullitt Center debuted in spring 2013 and is built to the principals of the Living Building Challenge — “net zero energy, net zero water, 100% waste water treatment onsite (read, composting toilets), nontoxic materials, and a host of other deep green goals.”

The project has been the center of City of Seattle projects to increase efficiency in developments. Meanwhile, a Capitol Hill Ecodistrict effort has also developed to help push more sustainable practices into the neighborhood’s next waves of construction, overhauls and upgrades.

bullitt-center-move-05Hammer & Hand joins a tenant roster including the Bullitt Foundation and green community group Sustainable Seattle. We detailed a few more of the preliminary tenants here.

“The Bullitt Center is a beacon for the industry and an inspiring example of how high design and high performance can be fused in building,” said Hammer & Hand CEO Daniel Thomas in a statement. “We’re excited to base our Seattle operations there and to become part of its community of like-minded organizations.”

As you celebrate Hill’s newest pioneering effort in sustainability, have ice cream with one of its oldest

(Image: Environmental Works)

(Image: Environmental Works)

Monday will be a big day around Capitol Hill to celebrate sustainability with parties for the new kid on the block — and an elder statesman of the green movement.

We’ve told you *lots* about the Earth Day 2013 celebration to officially open 15th and Madison’s Bullitt Center.

On the other end of 15th Ave, you can also celebrate one of Capitol Hill’s longest living institutions of environmental responsibility as Environmental Works celebrates its 43rd birthday with a parklet party:

The Bullitt Center, billed as the greenest commercial building in the world, celebrates its grand opening Monday.

The Bullitt Center, billed as the greenest commercial building in the world, celebrates its grand opening Monday.

environmental WORKS Earth Day Birthday
Monday April 22, 2013, 10 am-5:30pm 402 15th Avenue East, Seattle

PLEASE JOIN environmental WORKS staff, board members, supporters, and friends in celebrating the 43rd anniversary of the founding of environmental WORKS Community Design Center – on the first Earth Day in 1970.

Help celebrate our birthday at our second annual parklet at the firehouse doors – made possible with help from our friends at John Barker Landscape Architects, Swansons Nursery, QFC, and Green Plate Special. Parfait Ice Cream & BUNS Gourmet Natural Burger trucks will be joining us; come buy a treat and enjoy it in our outdoor living room!

You can learn more about the community design center in this CHS post documenting the group on its 40th anniversary a few years back. Check out eworks.org for the latest goings-on. For more Earth Day activities, check out the CHS Calendar.

Celebrate Earth Day at the greenest office building in your neighborhood… and the world

This is how the corner of 15th and Madison looked three Earth Days ago. That roof looks pretty green.8656027714_cdb2af84e3_b

While CC’s won’t be part of the celebration *this* Earth Day (the bar was reportedly offered a space but at one point but opted instead for an E Olive Way move) it should still be a pretty good party at the Bullitt Center

“The greenest commercial building in the world…”

that used to be a gay bar.

Over the weekend, one of the finishing touches before next Monday’s celebration of the project was completed as students planted the landscaping inside the overhauled McGilvra Place Park that fronts the Bullitt building. A Seattle U study once called the urban greenspace “the loneliest” place on Capitol Hill but CHS liked it fine for sitting for a summer lunch as Madison rushed by. The new Pacific Northwest-lush plantings will make it even nicer.

IMG_1833 Continue reading