Lake City residents that want to have a voice in future planning of the neighborhood gathered for the second in a series of “Coffee Talks” at the Community Center on Tuesday night. (Coverage from first meeting here).
The Coffee Talk meetings are part of community efforts to educate community members as they plan for future development in Lake City. The family of longtime Lake City auto dealer Bill Pierre is looking to redevelop some of their significant property holdings along Lake City Way and in the neighborhood’s hub urban village. The redevelopment has potential to completely change central areas of the neighborhood.
“Lake City is very fortunate that the Pierre family has come to the community,” said Gerald Hansmire, founder of MAKERS architecture, planning and urban design during his presentation. “Sometimes developers come in and do what they want because no one has suggested different,” he said.
The potential redevelopment opportunity of a large swath of urban land is attracting attention from urban planners and government leaders. The City of Seattle has formed an Interdepartmental Task Force to address neighborhood issues in anticipation of redevelopment (a draft scope of interdepartmental work is expected in the next few months).
During the Coffee Talk the group discussed urban design and density after presentations by Jeanne Krikawa, co-chair of the Seattle Planning Commission Land Use and Transportation Committee and partner at The Underhill Co., Geoffrey Wentlandt, senior urban design planner with the City of Seattle Department of Planning and Development and Hansmire of MAKERS.
Community members discussed zoning and design review at the meeting and how the two can be used as tools for a neighborhood to guide development. The limitations of design review were also noted. There was much discussion around the fact that the last time neighborhood design guidelines were approved was in 2007, guided by the Lake City Community Council. Some in attendance said that the Lake City Community Council represented a relatively small geographic area in greater Lake City at the time and with significant plans for redevelopment in Lake City, the guidelines should be updated.
Also discussed at the meeting was The North District Neighborhood Plan for Lake City, a massive effort in the late nineties that brought dozens of community members together with the City of Seattle to create a document to guide the future of the neighborhood.
The document looked at the development of Lake City from 1999 to 2014. Much of what was written into the plan still applies today. Also, much of what was planned was never realized.
Some at the meeting had never heard of The North District Neighborhood Plan for Lake City, and many in the general community likely also have not. Therefore, it is embedded below, broken into 10 sections. The first section is immediately below this text. The remaining nine are below the jump. This document is worth browsing as it lays out plans and ideas for Lake City, many that still apply today.
More sections below: