SHAPE YOUR COMMUNITY
Now, it’s your turn. Learn more about how decisions are made and who makes them. Find out how you can become more directly involved on community boards and commissions. Support worthwhile community initiatives and know exactly what you’re supporting. Express your opinions and back them up. In short, put your vision for your community or neighborhood into action. If you know of additional opportunities for individuals to get involved in shaping their communities, please forward the information to firstname.lastname@example.org, and we will add these resources to our list.
mission is to enhance the cultural livability of Seattle and to create a social network of people who care about the Arts, Urban Design and Historic Preservation.
DOCOMOMO (Documentation and Conservation of buildings, sites and neighborhoods of the Modern Movement), is an international organization with national and regional working parties around the world including DOCOMOMO.WEWA
– a regional volunteer working party covering Western Washington. DOCOMOMO.WEWA is dedicated to building appreciation and public awareness of the significance of Modernist buildings and structures in Western Washington through education, documentation, and advocacy.
DOWNTOWN SEATTLE ASSOCIATION
is a membership organization that works to revitalize and develop Downtown Seattle into a thriving, world-class destination. Volunteer members serve on committees that monitor and recommend positions on Downtown design issues such as the viaduct, waterfront and monorail. You can find DSA’s positions on these issues on the website. If your business or organization is a DSA member, you can participate directly in helping to shape Downtown Seattle.
works to ensure all communities across Washington are walkable. They help people take steps that create better places to live, learn, shop work and play—a world that cares about health, community and design.
, the local chapter of the American Institute of Architects, provides the architecture community with resources and relationships to make a difference through design.
is a Seattle-based nonprofit that creates opportunities — in print, in the community and online — for sharing ideas about design, culture and the built environment. They publish a magazine, host events and provide a curated calendar of Northwest design and art happenings.
The Bullitt Center
is the greenest commercial building in the world. The goal of the Bullitt Center is to drive change in the marketplace faster and further by showing what’s possible today.
The Bullitt Center is the home of the UW-Center for Integrated Design (CID), a self-sustaining entity of the University of Washington, that is located on the ground level of the Bullitt Center and serves as the home for the Integrated Design Lab and the Discovery Commons. The CID offers regular public tours of the Bullitt Center.
DESIGN IN PUBLIC
Design in Public (DiP)
is a strategic initiative of AIA Seattle. Design in Public was founded in 2011 to promote more public dialog about the role and impact of design on urban life. DiP organizes Seattle’s annual Design Festival.
is an independent, not-for-profit organization dedicated to spirited public discussion of art, architecture, urbanism and cultural issues in the spatial arts in Seattle.
The Washington Chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architects (WASLA)
is the professional society that represents the landscape architecture profession in Washington State.
WASLA leads, educates and participates in the careful stewardship, wise planning and artful design of our cultural and natural environments.
protects Seattle’s unique character by preserving historic buildings, architectural artifacts, and landscapes. The website hosts a preservation magazine and suggestions for ways to get involved in preservation advocacy.
The City of Seattle’s Historic Preservation Program
, located in the Department of Neighborhoods, is responsible for the designation and protection of more than 230 historic structures, sites, objects, and vessels, as well as seven historic districts scattered throughout Seattle. This site introduces the basics of historic preservation in Seattle, including the legal processes that govern individual landmarks and historic districts, incentives for property owners, meeting agendas and minutes, staff contacts, and links of historical interest. The Landmarks Boards review all new construction, demolitions and alterations in the Pioneer Square, Ballard, Columbia City, Harvard-Belmont and International District historic districts, as well as changes to individual landmarks.
NATIONAL TRUST: PRESERVATION GREEN LAB
Launched in March of 2009, the Seattle-based Preservation Green Lab
advances research that explores the value that older buildings bring to their communities, and pioneers policy solutions that make it easier to reuse and green older and historic buildings. The Green Lab seeks to minimize carbon impacts from the built environment through direct emissions reductions from building retrofits and reuse, and to conserve character-rich and human-scale communities that attract people to more sustainable, urban living patterns
WASHINGTON TRUST FOR HISTORIC PRESERVATION
preserves Washington’s historic places through advocacy, education, collaboration, and stewardship.
CITY DESIGN & PLANNING
GET ENGAGED PROGRAM
places young adults ages 18-29 on the City of Seattle’s public boards and commissions. Get Engaged commissioners serve a one-year term starting September each year. Acting in an advisory capacity to the Mayor and City Council, commissioners help shape policy decisions, make recommendations, and provide citizen participation in city government. Get Engaged is dedicated to cultivating the next generation of leaders and advocating for the influence of young voices in city affairs.
DESIGN REVIEW BOARDS
Most commercial and multifamily projects throughout the city are reviewed by volunteer design review boards, coordinated by the City Design Department.
Many neighborhoods have their own design guidelines. The website has project/meeting information and detailed information about the City’s design guidelines.
SEATTLE DESIGN COMMISSION
The Design Commission
reviews city projects and street vacations. Meetings are held every two weeks, and public comment is accepted. The website offers a guide to community involvement, summaries of recently reviewed projects, meeting agendas, minutes, the Seattle Design Commission Handbook, and background information on the commission.
SEATTLE PLANNING COMMISSION
The Planning Commission
advises the Mayor, City Council and City departments on broad planning goals, policies and plans for the physical development of the city. The Commission is committed to engage citizens in the work of the planning for the City and sponsors workshops and forums on key planning issues. The website provides agendas, meetings and current projects. Information on meetings on specific topics can be found at the Seattle Department of Planning and Development.
CITY NEIGHBORHOODS & PARKS
CITY OF SEATTLE DEPARTMENT OF NEIGHBORHOODS
In 1999, the City Council approved 38 neighborhood plans created by nearly 20,000 citizens. This website hosts these plans which identify actions needed to ensure that each neighborhood will continue to thrive and improve as Seattle grows over the next 20 years. You can read the plan for your neighborhood on this site, see what’s happening with projects currently underway, learn who to contact for information, and how you can get involved. Many neighborhoods have their own websites and many links are on this website.
coordinates park acquisitions, new facilities development and other improvements funded by the levy approved by voters in 2000. The website has information on what is planned for each park as well as major maintenance and neighborhood matching fund projects. The Neighborhood Matching fund program is featured on the website. Neighborhood groups may apply for neighborhood improvement grants from the fund and match them with in-kind services, cash, or volunteer time.
SEATTLE’S CENTRAL WATERFRONT
asked members of the greater Seattle architectural design community to produce visions and renderings of what the Seattle Waterfront could become without the Alaskan Way Viaduct and prioritized as a place for people, not just a transportation corridor. They compiled the Waterfront For All Report
which is available to download on their website.
FRIENDS OF THE WATERFRONT
Friends of Waterfront Seattle
is a start-up community group created to support Waterfront Seattle, a project that will transform 22 acres along the 2-mile stretch of Seattle’s waterfront from Pioneer Square to Belltown. They collaborate, inspire, motivate, educate, and raise money to build the project and sustain it.
is a partnership between the Seattle Department of Transportation, The Department of Planning and Development and Seattle Parks and Recreation.The Waterfront Program replaces the Elliott Bay Seawall and designs and constructs the Waterfront Seattle Core Projects. The Core Projects include a new pedestrian promenade, two-way cycle track, and new Alaskan Way that accommodates all modes of travel. They also include two rebuilt public piers, new parks and paths, and new pedestrian connections between the city and waterfront.
ALASKAN WAY VIADUCT
the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and City of Seattle have selected the Tunnel Alternative to replace the Alaskan Way Viaduct. This site contains the latest information on all aspects of the viaduct replacement including, from time to time, opportunities for your input.
Construction is under way on the 14-mile Central Link light rail line. This website has up-to-date information about all sound transit transportation options and projects and how they affect your neighborhood and daily commute. This website
provides ways for you to get involved and stay updated.