Councilmember Rob Johnson (Dist. 4, Northeast Seattle) issued the following statement after the University of Washington Board of Regents voted today to approve the 2018 Campus Master Plan, as passed by the Seattle City Council. Their approval followed a 6-0 vote by the City Council in December 2018 to grant conditional approval of the proposed plan.
“As our state’s flagship university, the University of Washington is an unparalleled educational and economic resource for District 4 and the City of Seattle. This new Master Plan sets forward a bold vision for the future of UW’s campus. The plan will allow thousands of new students the opportunity to pursue higher education here in Seattle, while also mitigating the impacts of this growth on UW’s neighbors. It will ensure that as UW grows it contributes meaningfully to our community, both on campus and throughout the city.
“After a two-and-a-half-year approval process, the City Council made changes to the proposed Master Plan that will improve outcomes for students and the community. We secured a commitment from UW to provide at least 450 units of affordable housing. We required transportation improvements, including investments in bicycle infrastructure and transit service, in order to reduce the target number of single-occupancy vehicle trips to campus. We provided incentives for new childcare spaces, opportunities for women and minority owned small businesses, and encouraged the use of priority hire in contracting.
“This new Master Plan aligns the future of UW with the incredible growth the U District is experiencing. I’ve worked hard during my time on Council to shape the changes that are coming to this neighborhood with the opening of two new light-rail stations within five years. In 2017, the City Council adopted the U District Upzone to allow more needed housing and trigger new Mandatory Housing Affordability requirements. My office has worked on transportation investments in the neighborhood to keep pace with housing growth, and next week the City Council will vote on the U District Design Guidelines to ensure that new development fits with the character of the neighborhoo
“I am glad that the Board of Regents agrees that this new plan is an improvement for the University and its surrounding community, and I look forward to seeing what the future holds for generations of Huskies to come.”