City of Seattle awards $467,000 for neighborhood projects

The City of Seattle is awarding $467,562 in matching funds to support neighborhood-initiated projects across Seattle. Twenty-eight community groups received awards from the Neighborhood Matching Fund for a variety of events, cultural festivals and projects.

“These projects are the result of neighbors working together to better their community,” said Mayor Ed Murray. “The entire city benefits from their volunteerism and talent as they create, plan and implement these projects. The Neighborhood Matching Fund is there to support their efforts, whether it is an exhibit, a documentary or a playground.”

These awards are part of the Small and Simple Projects Fund, one of three funds offered by Seattle Department of Neighborhoods. It provides cash awards of up to $25,000 in matching funds to community organizations committed to fostering and building a better community. The 2015 June awards range from $4,000 to $25,000, and the organizations pledge to match the City’s $467,562 investment with $600,132 of locally raised money, donated materials and volunteer labor.

“There is a reason the Neighborhood Matching Fund has existed for 27 years. It’s been a valuable resource for communities to turn their visions into reality,” said Kathy Nyland, director of Seattle Department of Neighborhoods. “Plus, for every dollar awarded, the community leverages the funds by matching the award. And this round of projects shows the diversity of ideas and creativity, proving once again how resourceful communities are throughout this city.”

In addition to the Small and Simple Projects Fund, the Neighborhood Matching Fund (NMF) has two other programs: the Large Projects Fund which provides matching funds of up to $100,000 and the Small Sparks Fund which provides funds of up to $1,000. Since 1988 more than 5,000 projects have been completed by neighborhoods and communities with the help of NMF, and its investment in neighborhoods can be seen across the city. For more information about all of the funds visit seattle.gov/neighborhoods/nmf/.

The Small and Simple Projects Fund opens again for applications in September with a deadline of October 5. To learn more visit seattle.gov/neighborhoods/nmf/smallandsimple.htm.

2015 June Small and Simple Projects Fund Awardees

Citywide Projects

  • $8,927 to Seattle-Sihanoukville Sister City Association to produce an event to provide education and share stories of Cambodian refugees during the Khmer Rouge Genocide and their resettlement in the United States. (Community match: $13,365)
  • $25,000 to Center for Linguistic and Cultural Democracy to produce a Seattle Caribbean Festival sharing cultural performances and cultural exchange to unite members of the diverse Caribbean community. (Community match: $20,480)
  • $10,000 to Gay City Health Project to solicit public input to create a database of health care providers to ensure the LGBTQ community has access to high quality, competent healthcare. (Community match: $7,220)

South Seattle Projects

  • $11,830 to Cheasty Greenspace at MountainView to finish elements to the Valley View trail’s trailhead connection, install wayfinding, and host a celebration. (Community match: $12,000)
  • $23,500 to Colman Park Restoration Project to develop a vegetation plan with community input for the west slope of Colman Park. (Community match: $12,260)
  • $5,110 to Othello Park Alliance to plant a hillside at Othello Park with 100% low native plants and involve the community in the selection and process. (Community match: $5,150)

West Seattle Projects

  • $24,400 to Chief Sealth Indoor Tennis to conduct a feasibility study and develop a conceptual plan for an indoor tennis center at the former Denny Middle School site. (Community match: $14,720)
  • $25,000 to South Park Area Redevelopment Committee to create a design with public input, construction documents, and cost estimates to improve Duwamish Waterway Park. (Community match: $45,575)
  • $21,395 to the West Seattle Time Bank to host 20 community events and workshops to promote timebanking and increase participation in West Seattle. (Community match: $22,840)
  • $15,000 to Circulo de Mamas Seattle to convene 20 Latina mothers and community members to further develop their community leadership through culturally relevant training. (Community match: $25,550)

North Seattle Projects (north of Ship Canal)

  • $12,000 to Low Incoming Housing Institute to produce a free event series that feature the people and topics relating to the Ballard neighborhood. (Community match: $6,320)
  • $24,400 to Ballard Historical Society to conduct a historic inventory of the Ballard community and utilize a visual and interactive GIS mapping component to engage volunteers and the public. (Community match: $32,400)
  • $15,000 to Ballard Partnership for Smart Growth to perform outreach within Ballard to garner interest in a proposed Business Improvement Area (BIA) to serve the needs of the neighborhood. (Community match: $17,820)
  • $11,500 to Troll’s Knoll P-Patch community garden to build and outfit a tool shed, create pathways, purchase equipment, and build accessible raised beds. (Community match: $12,550)
  • $4,000 to Friends of the Lake City Fred Meyer Garden Project to lead a community design process to beautify and activate a parcel of land owned by Fred Meyer for community benefit. (Community match: $2,240)
  • $25,000 to Freedom Project to organize a serves of free workshops to address racial inequity by engaging in collective learning, dialogue, and action. (Community match: $21,730)
  • $12,000 to Lake City Future First to improve a website and use it as a place to post volunteer opportunities and projects needing support, connect Lake City to resources, and encourage posts by community members for broad community engagement. (Community match: $13,260)

Central Seattle Projects

  • $25,000 to Leschi Community Council to install Fitness Zone equipment in Powell Barnett Park to increase the neighborhood’s access to health and fitness. (Community match: $39,500)
  • $25,000 to Friends of Cayton Corner Park to prepare construction documents for a neighborhood pocket park on Capitol Hill. (Community match: $12,630)
  • $11,500 to 23rd Avenue ACT (Action Core Team) to produce the Central Area Block Party in September to highlight the history and culture of the community. (Community match: $10,712)
  • $12,000 to the MLK Family Arts Mentoring Enrichment Community Center to conduct a planning study and prepare a master plan to renovate the facility’s kitchen. (Community match: $23,400)
  • $15,000 to Friends of Cathay Post Oral History Project to produce a documentary and publication of the stories of Chinese American WWII and Korean War veterans. (Community match: $33,700)
  • $12,000 to The Art of Alzheimer’s to organize a free art exhibition featuring paintings by people living with dementia to deepen community understanding of the disease. (Community match: $25,280)
  • $25,000 to Friends of Alley Gallery to develop recommendations to transform the Bell Street Park alleys into assets for ongoing creativity. (Community match: $14,100)
  • $15,000 to Growing Vine Street to increase capacity and engage the community in a dialogue about green space needs, neighborhood history, and other topics through two events. (Community match: $23,100)
  • $12,000 to Capitol Hill Housing Foundation to engage renters living in the Capitol Hill EcoDistrict in voter registration and a 2016 Renters Summit. (Community match: $30,980)
  • $16,000 to Sustainable Capitol Hill to create a community tool library and fixer’s collective to provide items to check out or use in the workshop. (Community match: $42,100)
  • $25,000 to Lawton Elementary School PTA to complete construction-ready documents to modernize the playground and redesign the surrounding space for the neighborhood. (Community match: $59,150)

Mayor Murray’s first annual Pride Reception

Yesterday Mayor Murray hosted the first annual Pride Reception at City Hall, bringing together local members of the LGBT community to celebrate the start of Seattle’s Pride Week.

At the reception, the Mayor presented the first ever Pride Award to Charlie Brydon, an LGBT leader who helped bring gay rights to the forefront of Seattle and Washington politics.  The Mayor also proclaimed June 25th, 2015 as Charlie Brydon Day in Seattle.

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Brydon persuaded then Mayor Wes Uhlman to commemorate Seattle’s first Gay Pride Week in 1977, a tradition that will continue this Sunday. He also established the Dorian Group, which sought to end housing discrimination based on sexual orientation and in 1978 Brydon rallied activists to join Citizens to Retain Fair Employment, which organized fundraising and educational activities to push back at national efforts to roll-back employment protections. Brydon’s work with Hands Off Washington successfully fought discriminatory state ballot initiatives, established chapters across the state, and laid the foundation for future LGBT political organizations, initiatives, campaigns and public officials.

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Community celebrates groundbreaking for Pike Place MarketFront expansion

Mayor Murray at Pike PlaceToday Mayor Murray joined members of the community to celebrate the groundbreaking for the new Pike Place MarketFront, a 30,000 square foot addition that will complete the last piece of the Pike Place Market Historic District.

This expansion – slated for completion in 2017 — will give visitors and shoppers a restored connection between two of Seattle’s greatest civic treasures — the market and the waterfront – especially once the viaduct is torn down.

Pike Place Market has adapted over the years without sacrificing its character, due in large part to efforts by the city, the PDA, and many friends and supporters.

The market embodies almost all of what makes Seattle unique – our demand for farm-to-table foods; our notion of fairness and equity; and our love for the arts and all things quirky.

The new MarketFront will help preserve the market as a place that brings Seattle together.

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Nominations open for 2015 Mayor’s Arts Awards; May 31st deadline

Nominations are now being accepted for the 2015 Mayor’s Arts Awards via an online form available at www.seattle.gov/arts. The awards recognize the accomplishments of artists, arts and cultural organizations and community members committed to enriching their communities through the arts.

There will be four awards presented this year:

  • Cultural Ambassador: Awarded to an individual who has significantly contributed to Seattle’s arts and cultural community and raised the visibility of Seattle’s arts culture. May include exemplary work across disciplines (as an artist or as an administrator) as well as advocating for and promoting the value of arts and culture. Open to individuals.
  • Arts & Innovation: Awarded for originality, ingenuity and resourcefulness within the creative sector. Open to individuals and organizations. New category.
  • Cultural Preservation:  Recognizing the restoration and preservation of our local heritage. Open to physical preservation and/or cultural preservation. Open to individuals and organizations. New category.
  • Future Focus: Awarded to an individual or organization that has demonstrated excellence in arts education and/or youth work. May be applied to a program for youth or by youth. Open to individuals and organizations (including youth).

“The arts are an essential ingredient of our society and our growing city,” said Mayor Murray. “The creative community is the beating heart of Seattle. Art helps us express our shared values and build bridges between us, regardless of our differences. I invite you to nominate someone who exemplifies the best of Seattle.”

Murray will honor recipients of the 2015 Mayor’s Arts Awards at a public ceremony at Seattle Center, Friday, Sept. 4. The event is free and open to the public.

The nomination deadline May 31. The nomination form is available online at www.seattle.gov/arts. For a print version of the form, contact (206) 684-7171 or arts.culture@seattle.gov.

The Seattle Arts Commission will review public nominations and recommend recipients to the mayor for final selection. Last year more than 600 nominations were received.

The awards are presented in partnership with Bumbershoot®: Seattle’s Music & Arts Festival, media sponsor City Arts magazine, and event sponsor Chihuly Garden & Glass.

Previous recipients:

2014: Alan Chong Lau, MOHAI & Leonard Garfield, Path with Art, Snoqualmie Indian Tribe, Stephen Stubbs, Teen Tix

2013: 826 Seattle, Preston Singletary, Seattle Repertory Theatre, Frye Art Museum, Pongo Teen Writing Project and Barbara Earl Thomas;

2012: Freehold Theatre Lab/Studio, KEXP 90.3 FM, Li Hengda, Lucia Neare’s Theatrical Wonders, Seattle Arts & Lectures, Buster Simpson, Three Dollar Bill Cinema, TilibSedeb (Singing Feet), The Vera Project, Olivier Wevers.

2011: Donald Byrd; Jack Straw Productions, Quinton Morris, On the Boards, Pratt Fine Arts Center and Tet in Seattle.

2010: Juan Alonso, Book-It Repertory Theatre, Dennis Coleman, Reel Grrls, Sergei Tschernisch, Velocity Dance Center.

2009: Artist Trust, Jesse Higman, Speight Jenkins, Northwest Tap Connection, Seattle Youth Symphony Orchestras.

2008: 14/48: the world’s quickest theater festival; Coyote Central and Marybeth Satterlee; Hugo Ludeña; Nonsequitur; Cathryn Vandenbrink; Wing Luke Asian Museum.

2007: Clarence Acox, John Gilbreath and Earshot Jazz, Jean Griffith, Longhouse Media’s Native Lens Program, Massive Monkees, Richard Hugo House,  Mimi Gardner Gates and Seattle Art Museum. 2006: Linda Hartzell and Seattle Children’s Theatre; Michael J. Herschensohn and Northwest Folklife; Rainier Vista Cambodian Youth Program; Gerard Schwarz; family of visual artists Michael Spafford, Elizabeth Sandvig and Spike Mafford; Reggie Watts.

2005: David Brewster and Town Hall; Peter F. Donnelly; Sara Liberty-Laylin and Adams Elementary School; Alden Mason; The Tsutakawa Family: Gerard, Deems, Marcus and Mayumi; Pastor Patrinell Wright and Total Experience Gospel Choir.

2004: Central District Forum for Arts & Ideas, The Seattle Foundation, Tim Summers, Sub Pop Records, Kent Stowell and Francia Russell.

2003: The Paul G. Allen Family Foundation, Arts Corps, Vinson Cole, Consolidated Works.

Mayor Murray is looking for the 2015 Civic Poet

Mayor Murray announced today that the City is launching a Civic Poet program to celebrate Seattle’s rich literary community, while investing in the future of literary arts through community engagement. Applications to be the 2015 Civic Poet will be accepted April 16 – May 28.

“Seattle is one of the most well-read cities in the country. From libraries to book stores, from universities to literary organizations, Seattle is passionate about language,” said Mayor Murray. “The Civic Poet program celebrates our history and commitment to the written and spoken word, and the people who have given it such a place of honor in our city.”

The new two-year Civic Poet post will serve as a cultural ambassador for Seattle’s rich, multi-hued literary landscape and will represent Seattle’s diverse cultural community. In addition to five annual performances, the Civic Poet will also complete hands-on work with communities to engage constituents city-wide.

Seattle’s Civic Poet will serve a term of two years, from July 2015 to July 2017, and will receive a $10,000 stipend distributed over the two year term. Applicants must be Seattle-based and eligible to work in the U.S. and have a demonstrated interest in civic engagement and the power of the written and spoken word.

The Civic Poet program is inspired by the previous Poet Populist program instituted in 1999 by Seattle City Council member Nick Licata. The goal of the Poet Populist program was to support the practice of literary arts democracy, and promote local literary arts organizations to a general audience city-wide. The Poet Populist program was discontinued in 2008. The Civic Poet program will continue the legacy of the Poet Populist program by fostering community dialogue and engagement between the public and artists, while celebrating the literary arts.

“I thank the Mayor, Office of Arts & Culture director Randy Engstrom, and leaders of our literary community for picking up where our previous Poet Populist program left off. By combining that program’s community engagement elements with the rigor of a traditional poet laureate model, Seattle’s Civic Poet program can inspire both diverse audiences and diverse ideas,” added Councilmember Licata.

A selection panel composed of writing and literary professionals and community representatives will review materials from all applicants. Those who are selected as finalists will be invited a panel to interview for final selection.

The Civic Poet program is administered by the city’s Office of Arts & Culture. For more information, visit http://www.seattle.gov/arts/funding/civic_poet.asp.

Seattle 2035: Growing to achieve race and social equity

Seattle 2035

Today, Mayor Murray transmitted to the City Council a resolution to recognize the priority of race and social equity as one of the foundational core values on which the City of Seattle’s Comprehensive Plan is built.

This year the City is writing Seattle 2035, a major update to the City’s Comprehensive Plan that will plot a 20-year vision and roadmap for Seattle’s future growth. Seattle expects 120,000 new residents over the next 20 years.

The revision of the City’s Comprehensive Plan is a chance for residents to discuss and decide where and how growth should be located in neighborhoods, as well as prioritize infrastructure investments, parks and other amenities that help neighborhoods function. Murray has emphasized that Seattle must be a city where all people can benefit from growth and development.

“Quality of life in Seattle means a living wage, quality education, a healthy environment, affordable housing and effective transportation options,” said Murray. “We must plan equitably, so that all families and individuals, those living here today and those coming tomorrow, have access to the services and amenities that make Seattle so special. We must always plan with an eye toward equity for all our diverse communities.”

In 1994, Seattle was a national leader when it made social equity one of the four core values in the original Comprehensive Plan. This legislation will ensure Seattle continues to be a leader.

This proposed resolution would change how Seattle plans and grows by:

  • Working toward a shared vision of race and social equity, and equitable development citywide;
  • Incorporating new race and social equity goals and policies throughout the Comprehensive Plan;
  • Analyzing the impacts of proposed growth strategies on the most vulnerable communities, and changing policies, programs and investments to help offset the impacts of the selected growth strategy;
  • Closing racial and social disparities with capital and program investments;
  • Creating, monitoring and reporting on equity measures; and
  • Being more inclusive in the stewardship of the Comprehensive Plan.

For more information, visit: http://2035.seattle.gov.

Mayor Murray announces conversion to metric system

Today Mayor Ed Murray announced that the City of Seattle will be the first major American city to convert entirely to the metric system.

“Seattle is a global city and it’s time we catch-up with the rest of the world in adopting the metric system,” said Murray. “We’ve proven cities can be incubators for change, so it just makes sense for Seattle to lead on the metric system as well.  As we seek to attract more international business and visitors, adopting a universally recognized system of measurement is key.”

“I have ordered all City departments to review their operations and provide a metric conversion plan in 30 days.  As a first step, I’ve directed the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) to print and install all speed limit signs in kilometers,” said Murray. “We are also in the early stages of planning with the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) to have the speed limit signs on I-5 through Seattle converted to kilometers.”

Additional changes to be rolled out immediately include:

 

  • All cars sold within city limits will be required to replace the speedometer with a kilometer gauge.
  • Seattle Public Schools will expand their teaching of the metric system in Fall 2015, ensuring that students are able to put their best meter forward and strengthen their understanding of the other side of the ruler.
  • The Seattle Parks Department will change all wildlife information kiosks to refer to inchworms as centipedes.
  • Heat advisories will be issued when the temperature reaches 26.66 degrees Celsius.
  • Precipitation will be measured by the millimeter to ensure accuracy.
  • Gas prices will be listed by the 3.78 liter.
  • All stadium vendors and food stands selling hot dogs will be encouraged to market their 30.48 centimeter-long hot dogs.
  • Beth’s Café’s 12-egg omelette will remain unchanged, as there is no way of converting egg quantity measurements.

Update 10:30 AM on April 1:  Despite Mayor Ed Murray’s liter-ship, Seattle will not be converting to the metric system. April Fools! (Sorry Canadians and scientists.) However, those wishing to refer to inchworms as centipedes are free to do so.

 

Duwamish River Opportunities Fund seeks proposals

The City of Seattle is seeking applications for community-based projects that enhance the quality of life in Seattle neighborhoods along the Duwamish River. Successful applicants will engage in projects to improve access to the river, support job creation and economic development, increase access to healthy food and other challenges faced by communities along the Duwamish.

“The Duwamish is our city’s river and we are committed to its future,” said Seattle Mayor Murray. “The larger clean-up effort is aimed at mitigating the effects of decades of legacy pollutants. These smaller-scale projects will help restore our community’s access to and enjoyment of the river as an important natural resource.”

This year, the City will fund $250,000 in projects. Prospective applicants are encouraged to attend a community event about the fund on Wed., April 8 from 5:30 to 8:30 PM, at Coliman Restaurant, 6932 Carleton Avenue S, in Georgetown. Applications will be accepted through May 15.

Successful projects will:

  • Be developed through a process of community engagement and participation.
  • Have a clear statement of the way the project addresses community priorities, the anticipated results, and the metrics used to measure success.
  • Build linkages among communities and involve a diversity of people and organizations; have engaged project partners.
  • Address an issue important to the success of the Duwamish River communities.
  • Be connected to the long range future of the Duwamish River communities.
  • Have a clear budget and demonstrated capacity to manage funds effectively.

For more information on the opportunity fund, including past awards, visit murray.seattle.gov/duwamish or email drof@seattle.gov.

Murray praises funding for Pike Place Market Front

Today, Mayor Murray issued the following statement after the Seattle City Council approved funding for the Market Front project at Pike Place Market:

MarketFront“Pike Place Market is an iconic symbol and a major hub of community life in Seattle. The Market Front expansion will expand that role for the Market and provide much-needed parking, public space, affordable housing and improved pedestrian access to the waterfront. My thanks to the City Council for helping bring this vision to reality. The City is proud to partner with the Market as we reconnect downtown with the waterfront.”

Mayor announces support for legislation to increase film production in Washington; Proclaims March 17th ‘Seattle Film Day’

Seattle Film DayMayor Murray announced his support of Senate Bill 6027 (SB 6027), introduced this February in the Washington State Senate to increase the funding for the Motion Picture Competitiveness Program.

The bill doubles the size of the Film Competitiveness Program over the next two years to $7 million, and increases the fund incrementally each year until it reaches $10 million in 2019. The sunset date for the program will also be extended to 2022.

Last year, under the program’s current annual $3.5 million cap, the annual fund was expended by May and a total of $55 million worth of film production projects were immediately turned away.

“Washington’s current incentive program is the fifth smallest in the country,” said Mayor Murray.  “I support this legislation because it strengthens the State’s best tool to keep our film industry competitive. This program, alongside the City’s Commercialize Seattle initiative, will help retain and increase film industry talent to fuel our creative economy.”

Mayor Murray proclaimed Tues., March 17, 2015 “Seattle Film Day” in honor of Seattle’s 80-plus years as a film making destination.

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Senate Bill 6027

SB 6027’s prime sponsor is Senator Jeanne Kohl-Welles (D, 36th), with co-sponsors Senator Andy Billig (D, 3rd) and Senator Joe Fain (R, 47th).  See the Washington State Legislature page for more details at http://apps.leg.wa.gov/billinfo/summary.aspx?bill=6027&year=2015#videos

City’s Office of Film + Music (OFM)

The Seattle Office of Film + Music is part of Seattle’s economic development agenda. Its charge is to make Seattle a great place to make a living making film and music. OFM is a streamlined resource for all of your film and music needs, and manages Seattle’s City of Music and Commercialize Seattle initiatives. It offers creative tax incentives and professional business development opportunities, making this vibrant city the perfect background for film or music production.