Planners are holding a public meeting this evening (April 6) to show plans for a new 16-unit low-rise apartment building being built on property owned by First Place School. The location of the project site is being obfuscated due to privacy concerns. First Place School focuses on helping the homeless who have school aged children.
The preferred design for Imani Village would be three stories tall with a courtyard in the center and a rooftop deck. If the design process goes smoothly, construction could begin as early as October, said Chris Cooper of First Place. The project has received $4 million from the Washington State Housing Trust Fund and $500,000 from the Gates Foundation. First Place has partnered with Catholic Housing Services to work on the Imani Village project.
Date: Wednesday, April 6, 2011
Time: 6:30 p.m.
Location: Seattle Vocational Institute, 2120 South Jackson Street, Room 102 / 103
but the address is revealed both in the first comment above and in the land use application that can be found via a couple of CDN links:
Given that the address is needed to discover the link to the applicant’s material (which is useful to review before the meeting), it seems counter-productive to hide it. Design Review is a public process!
Ouch, there are many other options that make much better use of these funds.
Please respect the desires of this homeless family project to keep their address at least ungoogleable.
This comment was posted by James, I removed the address:
The renderings do not really make me all that excited about the project – it doesnt really fit within the context of the adjacent structures – not because of massing or scale – just the details of the structure – DKA architects looked like they pulled some template off the shelf that said “apartments” –
It really is disappointing. You think they would try to make a better effort at designing something that gave the residents and the neighborhood a little more faith – Dwell architects as well as PB Elemental would have been a much better choice as they have worked throughout the neighborhood and have made a real effort to design affordable high quality housing – I would not say the same thing about DKA.
why are you removing the address – this is public information and people in the community should be able to comment throughout the design process.
you need the address in order to look up the project on the city’s website? i am really confused – why are you not allowing the community to disclose the address; is this at someone’s request?
the project is an empty lot – you are not really invading on anyone’s privacy?
The Design Review process is public, and a knowledge of the address of the proposed project is clearly essential, to allow neighbors to know that a project of interest to them is being discussed.
There is, to the best of my knowledge, no requirement to publicize the exact nature of the project. Indeed you’ll often see that the nature of businesses, condo vs retail, etc, decisions change based on the economy.
Clearly the basic nature of the proposed enterprise has to be public, so that we can know that it is an allowed use in a particular area.
So, if there is a desire to avoid a link between an address (that clearly needs to be publicized) and a certain sensitive activity, why not include the former in the article and not the latter?
Tom wants to avoid making the linkage between the address and the nature of the enterprise “googleable”.
The actual link, posted above, seems acceptable.
That was another option we considered, but this is how we have done it in past stories about this project. It also seems relevant to discuss the organization and their mission for the apartment project, which is not typical. I figured that those who live near First Placel probably know where it is. I understand it may seem a little silly to do it this way, so thanks for understanding.
Tom, thank you for your interest in the story and your interest in protecting the people who are served by the organization First Place. It is disappointing that our neighbors are more concerned with design review process and what the building is going to look like and less concerned with the safety of the people who may need to use it. The people who live in direct proximity to the site are able to access all the information they need if they want to. Andrew, I’m not sure why you are so adamant about publishing the address. Especially since you don’t even live close to the site.
I do not think people understand that the address should be ungoogable because of the security that the users of the school would appreciate. Many homeless children are illegally kidnapped by other family members in hopes of getting the children out of homelessness. If the children are being neglected or abused there is a legal method of getting children out of that situation. At least that’s my understanding.
The last time CDN posted on this project we had the same online debate about privacy of the project due to the nature of folks living there – previously homeless and DV survivors. I have a really hard time with this, because this is a publicly funded project and therefore, deserves public scrutiny by both the neighborhood and taxpayer. As an affordable housing developer, I feel strongly that this is necessary, and that is what design review and other processes are for. If First Place truly wanted to develop a project in secret, they should have at least funded it with private money only. And even then, the permitting process through DPD requires transparency for neighborhood accountability. I am not sure why this news site is hiding an address that is plainly available in all City documents and permitting material. It feels silly to be quite honest.
In regards to design, DKA is a reputable firm with roots in the African American community, and I think that this is a good fit for the neighborhood. in my opinion Pb Elem was a terrible developer, and has left the Central Area strewn with vacant lots they lost to foreclosure and did nothing to take care of. Their lot on 12th and Fir was a hazard for nearly two years that they refused to even donate $200 to help haul refuse off of. I appreciate your comments Tom, but you might want to learn a little bit more about how these developers really treated the neighborhood before recommending them so highly.
For the record, that comment about design choices was by “james in the cd,” I was just reposting it (see the first line of the comment).
My bad Tom, many apologies. As you can tell, I really have a problem with Pb.