Celebrating Seattle's Roosevelt Neighborhood
RNA  |  The Roosevelt Neighborhood Association

Neighborhood zoning

Final MHA (HALA) Update

On March 18, 2019, the Seattle City Council voted 9-0 to adopt the MHA guidelines, which are documented on the city’s website here

The final map increases the size of the Roosevelt neighborhood by expanding its eastern boundary from 15th Ave NE to 16th Ave. NE between NE 70th St. and NE 68th St. and to 17th Ave. NE from NE 68th St. to NE 65th St. There are many changes to zoning throughout the neighborhood. One major change from the preferred alternative to the adopted map is the exclusion of the properties in the boundary of the Ravenna-Cowen Historic District south of NE 65th St. and east of 12th Ave. NE.

You can view these changes in higher resolution on the city’s interactive interactive map system here.  

Feb. 2, 2019 MHA (HALA) Update

The City Council is considering action on Citywide Mandatory Housing Affordability (MHA) including changes to land use regulations, zoning designations, comprehensive plan language and maps, including neighborhood Plan policies and changes to Urban Village Boundaries on the City’s Future Land Use Map (FLUM); and development standards for all multifamily and commercial areas.

The MHA program is focused on rezoning the Urban Villages throughout Seattle in order to provide for more housing and the development fees required as a result of the “up” zoning will go to a general fund to assist the incorporation of affordable housing units.

The entire Roosevelt Urban Village will be re-zoned and the current proposal included in the Final EIS (Environmental Impact Statement) extends the Urban Village boundary east of 15th Ave NE with mostly RSL zoning.

Link to the final environmental impact statement: https://www.seattle.gov/Documents/Departments/HALA/Policy/MHA_FEIS/Compiled_MHA_FEIS_2017.pdf

FEIS Exhibit H-70, preferred alternative

Link to the “preferred plan” maps & alternatives (see Exhibit H-70, page H-71):https://www.seattle.gov/Documents/Departments/HALA/Policy/MHA_FEIS/AppH_MHA_FEIS_2017.pdf

Information about MHA: mandatory-housing-affordability-(mha)

Interactive Map to use to research specific properties: seattlecitygis interactive maps

Upcoming City Council meetings:  http://www.seattle.gov/council/calendar?trumbaEmbed=filter2%3D_1194537_&filterfield2%3D12011

Friday February 8, 9:30am Select Committee on Citywide Mandatory Housing Affordability (MHA)

Thursday February 21, 5:30pm Select Committee on Citywide Mandatory Housing Affordability (MHA) – Public Hearing

Monday February 25th, 2:30pm Select Committee on Citywide Mandatory Housing Affordability (MHA) (or after City Council)

July 3, 2017 HALA update

The DEIS (draft environmental impact statement) was published June 8, 2017. The DEIS was not written incorporating any of the HALA comments, the purpose
was to examine the potential effects of zoning changes necessary to implement Mandatory Housing Affordability (MHA). The EIS evaluates two action alternatives for implementing MHA with differing distributions and patterns of zoning changes, as well as a no action alternative that would not implement MHA. The Draft EIS identifies environmental impacts and mitigation measures for each alternative.

DEIS: DEIS Comments are due by July 23, 2017.
Additional information & comment links: DEIS comments

Previously the RNA submitted two reports to the City of Seattle on the HALA proposals. The first report was submitted March 2017:

HALA Report_3-7-17

A second report was submitted June 29, 2017, in response to community desire to respond to the initial HALA proposal, after continued City outreach in spring 2017:

RNA HALA report update

The City will be publishing a Proposed HALA plan fall 2017, and the City Council will be entertaining comments fall 2017, and likely taking up this resolution in spring 2018.

RNA – Housing Affordability Livability Agenda (HALA) Survey


Please participate by 5/15/17

The City has drafted plans that will reshape transit-oriented communities in response to Seattle’s growth and affordability issues. The HALA plan changes will affect all residential and commercial properties in the Roosevelt, and some Ravenna parcels east of 15th Ave NE. You can watch a video of our December Land Use Academy on this topic here: http://bit.ly/2mYx8uR

In response to the City of Seattle’s March neighborhood outreach regarding HALA, the Roosevelt Neighborhood Association (RNA) has identified a need to reopen this survey, which solicits the community’s input on the draft Roosevelt zoning changes (“Roosevelt Draft Plan”).
You can also submit feedback directly to the City via https://hala.consider.it/

Seattle HALA process timing

Cut off for public input June 30th.

City hosting 5 more in person meetings dates and times can be found at Seattle.gov/HALA/calendar

DEIS is expected to be published in May with June 30th deadline for comment on that as well.

Final proposal and new maps transmitted to Council in late summer/early fall.

Council review likely to start early 2018.

RNA Report on community input for the Housing Affordability Livability Agenda (HALA)

The RNA has drafted a report that summarizes feedback from the broader Roosevelt community on the City of Seattle’s Housing Affordability and Livability Agenda’s (HALA’s) Draft Zoning Change plan released in October 20216. Feedback was collected via a community meeting on December 10, 2016 and an online survey, both organized by the Roosevelt Neighborhood Association.

Overall, Roosevelt community members welcome increased density in the neighborhood, though there were a diversity of views on how and where to incorporate new housing units. Opinions were split on a number of issues such as: the effectiveness of transitions, whether the plan will actually increase the number of units and diversity of housing, and if the plan allowed more people to take advantage of community assets.

Many participants were encouraged by the MHA requirements that will increase affordability, though a great deal of people wanted to ensure: (1) affordable “family-sized” units be created in addition to studio and 1BR apartments, and (2) affordable housing be located within Roosevelt, and not simply see developers pay into a fund to create affordable units elsewhere in the city.

There was general support for the increased zoning, particularly near the “urban core,” provided that the plan fostered walkable and pedestrian features and preserved or added community assets. This could be done, for example, by ensuring wider sidewalks and greater setbacks, plus incorporating community gathering spaces into new construction. Lastly, some viewed the Urban Village expansion (particularly east of 15th Ave NE) as “natural”, although there was often strong opposition from many Ravenna community members whose properties would now be located within the urban village and thus impacted by zoning changes.

In conclusion, the RNA supports:
• The proposed rezoning & MHA policy, though refining the transitions noted, especially increased setbacks for enhanced landscaping in LR & MR zones.
• Expansion of the Urban Village with the divergent considerations noted.
• Neighborhood planning to include community needs; open space and parks, additional school/s, and pedestrian safety.

RNA HALA report:
HALA Report_3-7-17_main

RNA: Dec.Workshop & Survey input:HALA Report_background

Land Use Academy – HALA: Saturday Dec. 10th 10am-noon @ Calvary Christian Assembly 6800 Roosevelt Way NE

As these zoning changes and Urban Village expansion affect the entire community, the RNA will be hosting a public session to help educate and provide some understanding of the importance of this proposal in regard to the Light Rail station area, the focus on affordable housing, and how we can guide the character of our evolving neighborhood.

Seattle 2035 Comp Plan & HALA proposal for Urban Village boundary & zoning changes

The City of Seattle has been a focus of growth over the past decade leading to many, many more people moving here. The number of projected new jobs is over 100,000 over the next three years (after growing 120,000 jobs over the past 3 years), the UW will be enlarging 30-50% over the next twenty years, and Roosevelt will get a Light Rail station in less than 5 years. The existing amenities, quality schools and parks, make Roosevelt and the surrounding neighborhoods enticing for new residents.

How this area, and major neighborhoods throughout Seattle, will increase density in order to accommodate these new residents along with our own growing families, without exasperating the affordability crises and causing major displacement is the impetus for the proposed HALA zoning changes throughout the City.

See: https://hala.consider.it

As these zoning changes and Urban Village expansion affect the entire community, the RNA will be hosting a public session to help educate and provide some understanding of the importance of this proposal in regard to the Light Rail station area, the focus on affordable housing, and how we can guide the character of our evolving neighborhood.

Current proposed plan-changes include:

Urban Village boundary: there is an expansion proposed to the east of 15th Ave NE, to NE 16th, between NE 68th & NE 70th, and to 17th Ave NE, south of NE 68th to Ravenna Park. This is the basis for zoning changes in those areas.

Zoning changes: Many Single-Family blocks are being proposed to be reclassified to Residential Small Lot (RSL) or Lowrise-Multifamily (LR1, LR2, and LR3) and the Neighborhood Commercial zones are allowed a 10’ increase in height. The Mid-rise Multifamily (MR) does not have a density increase proposed. A note on the height increase is that standard wood construction over two levels of concrete base is allowed only up to 75’ height, so increasing some of the central NC zones from 85’ to 95’ may not make any difference as we are not seeing structures proposed over the 75’ height in any of these zones currently.

The change to RSL is not a big step, though many currently zoned Single-family areas could see changes to Low-rise zoning, in order to encourage more housing, potential affordability, and a mix of larger units in these developments. The map also shows a designation of M, M1, & M2 which correspond to the MHA (mandatory housing affordability) requirements to provide some “affordable” units or payment in-lieu as a percentage of the total density. The goal is to encourage a mix of housing units, and requiring one larger (2-Bedrm or 3-Bedrm) for every 7 small units.

Residential Small Lot (RSL): There can be one unit for each 2000sf, which is not a big change from current code that allows for an attached Accessory unit (ADU) or a detached unit (DADU). The front & rear setbacks are reduced to 10’ each.

Low-rise: The setbacks are the same each zone; the front setback is 5’ min, and 10’ rear setback w/ alley (15’ w/out). The method to determine density (FAR) is similar for the LR zones, though the factor (floor-area-ratio) increases for each zone type, and the heights also increase.

floor-area-ratio (FAR)                                    Height

LR1                  1.2 (currently 1.2)                  30’ (no change)

LR2                  1.5 (currently 1.3)                  40’ (currently 30’)

LR3                  2.2 (currently 2.0)                 50’ (currently 40’)