Belltown Livability Coalition

The Belltown Livability Coalition (BLC) is working to ensure the new construction at 2616 Western conforms to current neighborhood building & zoning codes.

Photo credit: GGLO, Saratoga Capital Inc, Design Proposal

Belltown and Seattle City zoning laws were updated in 2017 as part of the HALA>> zoning change. The HALA program and the MFA resulted in a 20-30 foot height increase with the intent of adding additional housing in Belltown and downtown Seattle. For our zoning area this change resulted in a new maximum height limit of 145 feet from the original limit of 125 feet. The change to city code was conducted with community input and respected the overall design of the city’s scale.

The increase proposed by the developer of 2616 Western leverages an international conservation program –the Living Building Pilot Program (LBPP) to unilaterally change zoning heights based on the International Living Future Institute (ILFI) criteria irrespective of Belltown/Seattle current zoning laws and without community input.

The LBP program was not approved by Seattle citizens, although it is being allowed to change our cityscape.  Builder’s documentation of meeting LBPP criteria is not open to public review. When we asked for documentation of the criteria for 2616 Western, both the city and the ILFI LBP told us to ask the builder. If successful, the LBPP will increase the current zoned height limit by 25ft. 

Photo credit: GGLO, Saratoga Capital Inc, Design Proposal

If left to proceed unchecked, leveraging the LBPP could have a direct effect on over 23 undeveloped lots in the North Belltown area – cluttering our skyline, cutting off light to the surroundings buildings, and modifying our city plan without our input.

Cities like Paris and Washington D.C. have been very successful and are considered premier visiting sites with building height limits of 127 feet and 130 feet respectively. We can do the same. Let’s keep Belltown livable!

Please contribute to the legal fund, working to ensure the new construction at 2616 Western conforms to current, community-approved build code

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