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Mandatory Housing Affordability (MHA)

Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS)

Junction Neighborhood Association

Land Use Committee
July 11, 2017
The Junction Urban Village

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JuNO Land Use Position

Density is inevitable, but a livable neighborhood

must be the outcome
Plan intelligently toward a vision for The Junction
Provide a voice in the process
Uphold our established Neighborhood Plan, until we
develop a new one

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Mandatory Housing Affordability (MHA)

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Zoning limits what
can be built on a lot

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Types of zoning

Single Family
SFR = Single Family Residences
RSL = Residential Small Lot
LR = Lowrise
NC = Neighborhood Commercial
MR = Midrise
HR = Highrise
C = Commercial
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Example: SFR vs. LR1

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Example: SFR vs. LR2

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Example: LR3

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Incentive Allow more density

7/11/2017 Source: Craigslist, 1/15/17 10

In exchange for mandatory affordable units

Example: 4505 42nd Ave SW

Stories: 7
Units: 42
Parking: 15 spots (0 required)

Under HALA:
Stories: Up to 9
Units: 60?
Affordable: 60 x 6% = 4
Parking: (0 required)

7/11/2017 Source: Seattle in Progress 11

What is affordable?

(Renters) 60% of Seattles Median Income

(Owners) 80% of Seattles Median Income
Household 60% of AMI 80% of AMI
size (Rental) (Owner)
1 $37,980 $50,640
2 $43,380 $57,840
3 $48,780 $65,040
$1,017 per month
4 $54,180 $72,240 (including utilities)
5 $58,560 $78,080
6 $62,880 $83,840
7 $67,200 $89,600
8 $71,520 $95,360

Source: Office of Housing, based on 2016 Income Limits as published by U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development
7/11/2017 Program Limits for the Seattle-Bellevue HUD Metro Fair Market Rent Area (King-Snohomish Counties). 12
Payment of a fee is an alternative

Example: 4534 40th Ave SW

Stories: 3 + roof deck
Units: 4

Under HALA:
Stories: 4 + roof deck
Units: 5
Affordable: minimum 2 or 1x3BR
Fee instead:
7,000 sq ft x $13.25 = $92,750

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Where does the money go?

Fees go into an affordable housing fund

Developers that make affordable housing commitments may
apply for grants from the fund
The citys policy is to try to spend the money near where it
was raised

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MHA timeline

June: City develops an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS)

based on proposals
Until August 7: Residents may comment on the EIS
Summer/Fall 2017 : EIS is finalized and new zoning legislature
is proposed
Winter 2018: Residents may comment on the legislature
Mid-2018: City Council votes on MHA zoning

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What is an Environmental Impact Statement?

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What is it?

Required by state law: WAC 197-11-400

An impartial discussion of significant environmental impacts

to inform decision makers and the public of reasonable
alternatives, including mitigation measures, that would avoid
or minimize adverse impacts or enhance environmental

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What is it for?

Enable government agencies and interested citizens

to review and comment on proposed government
Assist agencies to improve their plans and decisions,
and to encourage the resolution of potential
concerns or problems prior to issuing a final

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What is it not?

Justification for a decision thats already been made

A discussion on whether the proposal is right or
A discussion on whether the proposal will work and
achieve its goals

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What is the environment?

Its more than trees, air, and grass

It can include transportation, aesthetics, public utilities, and
similar quality of life issues
The City notified the public of the EIS in July 2016 and asked
for comments about what it should include
This comment period ended September 9, 2016

NOTE: The comment period ended before our affected residents

were specifically and effectively notified.

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MHA Alternatives

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Alternative 1: No MHA
Alternative 2: Implement zoning changes and MHA
Alternative 3: Implement zoning changes and MHA,
but minimize displacement risk and maximize
access to opportunity

How did the City develop Alternative 3?

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Whats displacement?

Physical Displacement: Evicted and building

Economic Displacement: Cant afford to live there
any more due to rents or taxes
Cultural Displacement: Their neighbors and
culturally-related businesses have left the area

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Displacement risk indicators
People of Color Proximity to light rail

Linguistic Isolation Proximity to core businesses

Education Proximity civic infrastructure

Proximity to high-income
Renter vs. Owner
Housing cost-burdened Proximity to job center

Household income Development capacity

Proximity to transit Median rent

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Risk Map

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Whats opportunity?

Living within walking distance of: services, jobs, and

Other key determinants of social, physical, and
economic well-being.

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Opportunity indicators
School performance Proximity to light rail
Proximity to community
Graduation rate
Access to college Proximity to park

Proximity to library Sidewalks

Proximity to employment Proximity to health care

Proximity to a location that
Property appreciation
sells produce
Proximity to transit

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The Junction (30th out of 39 for Opportunity)
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ISSUE: Recognize our livability issues by categorizing our
access to opportunity as Low?

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Alternative 2
MHA Upzones

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Alternative 3
High Opportunity
and Low
Displacement risk

- Higher density

- Larger boundary

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1995-2016: 111% growth, highest UV in Seattle
2016-2035: 59%+ growth, 2nd highest UV in Seattle
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Impact Assessments

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Transportation - Traffic

Standard: Level of Service of D or better

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Transportation - Traffic

In the Junction: No streets or intersections assessed

Assessment: West Seattle Bridge to I-5 at Peak

Eastbound to I-5 Westbound to West Seattle

2015 D / 8.5 minutes D / 9.5 minutes

2035 No action D / 9.0 minutes F / 15.0 minutes

Alternative 2 D / 9.0 minutes F / 15.5 minutes

Alternative 3 D / 9.0 minutes F / 15.5 minutes

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Traffic Methodology

Checked Google Maps on an undisclosed Wednesday

in March at 5:00 PM, 5:15 PM, 5:30 PM, and 5:45 PM


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Transportation - Parking

Standard: 70-85% utilization

Junction: Not assessed

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Junction is
not listed

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Transportation - Bus

Standard: No more than 100% capacity at peak

Junction: C-Line at Peak

C-Line Capacity Usage

Existing 67%

2035 No action 75%

Alternative 2 75%

Alternative 3 77%

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Bus Methodology

Received from KC Metro. Methodology not

67% capacity?

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DEIS Conclusions

Travel demand and associated congestion is expected to

increase over time regardless of alternative pursued.
No finding of impact for the Junction
General mitigations (citywide) include:
Demand management strategies
Restricted Parking Zones (RPZ)
Increased parking taxes/fees
Limit the amount of parking allowed with new development

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Open Space and Recreation

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Open Space and Recreation

2011 Standard: -acre of neighborhood parks within

mile of households
Assessment: Junction does not meet standard

2017 Standard: 5-minute walk to a 10,000 sq ft+ city

park for most households in the urban village
Assessment: Junction does meet standard

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5-minute park

Dakota Park

Ercolini Park

Undeveloped Golf Course /

Park @ 40th SW Stadium
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DEIS Conclusions

Housing growth would generate more demand for

parks and open space across the city.
Significant open space gaps would likely continue.
Development under all alternatives would have
significant adverse impacts to parks and open space.
Junction: No mitigations proposed

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Our Position

The Junction has a severe park and open space

The issue gets worse with growth
The DEIS must present a mitigation plan for the
Junction, to include:
New park space within the Junction
Open space design standards and incentives
Identified funding sources, e.g. developer impact fees

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Land Use, Aesthetics, and Tree Canopy

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Land Use (zoning)

All areas of Single Family would change, creating potential
for density and scale impacts, resulting in moderate and
some significant impacts.
Much of the village would potentially experience minor or
moderate impacts to scale with height increases of up to
15 feet.

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DEIS Conclusions

Some of these changes to land use patterns would rise to a

level of significant land use impact, and would be an
unavoidable consequence of MHA. Such changes are an
expected and common outcome of the continuum of change
of urban development over time
Mitigations: None proposed for the Junction

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Junction: The DEIS did not specifically study the

Junction and how newer, larger buildings would
affect it.
General potential Impacts:
View Obstruction and Shading
Changes to character
Impacts to privacy

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DEIS Conclusions

This transition is an unavoidable and expected characteristic

of urban population and employment growth.
Mitigations: None proposed for the Junction

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DEIS Conclusions

General mitigations proposed:

Development regulations should require upper-level setbacks

Implement side faade standards that manage windows to increase


Update neighborhood design guidelines

Apply neighborhood guidelines during project design reviews

ISSUE: Design reviews are being weakened and will no longer

apply to most projects in Lowrise/RSL zones.

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Our Position

Our Single Family areas and aesthetics are protected by our

Neighborhood Plan, which is an adopted part of the City
Comprehensive Plan:

WSJ-P13. Maintain the character and integrity of the existing single-family areas.
WSJ-G1. A small-town community with its own distinct identity comprised of a
strong single-family residential community and a vibrant mixed-use business
district serving the surrounding residential core.

The DEIS must assess the impact of larger, taller buildings with
regard to the Junctions character. Our neighborhood plan
and design guidelines are the standard.

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Biological DEIS Conclusions

Parcels changing from single family would see the

largest changes in tree canopy if developed,
however, these categories only account for 15 acres
within the 2,383 acre study area.
Assessment: No impact
Junction: No mitigations proposed

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Our Position

15 acres is incorrect. The expansion area of the

Junction alone is 47 acres of single-family housing.

While the tree canopy impact may be small relative

to the size of the city, the impact is large within the
area of the Junction.

The EIS must study the Junction specifically and

propose mitigations to preserve tree canopy.

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Public Services and Utilities

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Public Services Police/Emergency

Demand on police services would be identified and

managed as growth occurs in the City over time.
The City would continue to manage fire and EMS
services in the city as a whole in view of planned
housing and employment growth.
Junction: No impacts identified.

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Our Position

The DEIS did not take emergency services seriously

The DEIS must:
Assess crime rate impact to the Junction
Assess impact on emergency staffing levels and response
Acknowledge the lack of nearby hospitals in its analyses
Assess the impact of growth on disaster response to the

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Public Services Schools

The SPS Facilities Master Plan identified enrollment

projections through 2022. The projection is 13 years
shorter than the 2035 planning horizon.
BEX Phase IV includes [list of projects].
Junction: No impact assessed; the Junction was
omitted from the list of areas within SPS Sector 6

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Our Position

The DEIS did not take school capacity seriously

The schools serving the Junction are already
BEX IV has a 1,100 seat gap
The DEIS must study the capacity of schools to serve
the Junction through 2035 and assess the impact of

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Public Services Utilities

There will be no direct impacts to public utilities

from the proposed zoning changes under the MHA
program but higher density can concentrate
demand and cause local capacity problems.
Junction: No impacts identified

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Our Position

The DEIS did not take public utility capacity seriously

The DEIS fails to acknowledge that most sewer lines in the
Junction are <12 and must be upgraded to meet the
demands of any Alternative. No mitigation is proposed.
The sewer analysis is itself faulty, as it fails to study peak
flows. Given the age of the sewer system and its use as a
storm water system, peak flows are critical.
The DEIS relies on an obsolete wastewater plan, and does
not acknowledge the Citys issues managing wastewater
The DEIS fails to study drainage and the impact of the
additional impermeable surfaces.

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Historic (and Cultural) Resources

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Historic Resources

Standard: Identify mitigations if housing growth rates

will exceed 50%
Junction: The Junction was omitted from
commentary, despite having a growth rate of 59%+

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DEIS Conclusions

The MHA program will not directly impact any historic

or cultural resources, but development allowed by the
MHA program could impact these resources
Junction: No specific mitigations
General mitigations proposed:
Develop policies that promote new development that is
consistent with historic character
Continue historic surveys
Consider new conservation districts

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Our Position

The length of California Ave within the Junction is culturally

significant. In addition to two landmark buildings,
California Ave houses numerous historic small businesses
(e.g. Husky Deli, Easy Street Records) and is the place of
long-running events such as the West Seattle Grand Parade.

The DEIS must recognize the cultural significance of

California Ave and the streets of its nearby vicinity, and
must propose mitigations to protect it.

It is inappropriate to raise the zoning along California Ave to

NC-95 and to leave it without the protection of specific
design standards.

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General Issues

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General Issues

The DEIS position in a nutshell:

Things were going to get bad anyway. MHA makes it
only a little worse. The City should solve these issues
at some point.

Our position is that when areas of livability have fallen

below acceptable standards, they must be addressed
prior to compounding the problem.

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General Issues

The study is so broad and superficial that there is no

opportunity to see impacts at the intersection,
street, or block level.

Our position is that we need to see impacts at the block

and street level. West Seattle should get its own EIS.

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General Issues

The study fails to include the impacts of other

projects happening during the 20-year study period:
Terminal 5 development

Demolition of the viaduct

Fauntleroy Way repaving and partial closure

Avalon Way rechannelization

One City Center bus rerouting

Sound Transit construction

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Acknowledge that our culture matters! Our Neighborhood
Plan and our Historic areas are important!

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The Outcome

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Affordable Housing Built by 2035
West Seattle Junction

Units Built Compared to No Action

No action 20

Alternative 2 42 +22 more

Alternative 3 56 +36 more

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