Smart Growth Seattle is a new advocacy group promoting fresh land use codes to manage neighborhood growth. We collaborate with homebuilders and community stakeholders to help government adopt codes that are appropriate for meeting housing demand and preserving neighborhood character. Our approach starts by identifying ways that the land use code can be improved. We collect ideas relevant to these initiatives and weigh them against a set of principles shared among our supporters. Then, we communicate with government officials to help them enact the smartest solutions.
The Principles of Smart Growth:
- Urban Density: We support Washington’s Growth Management Act, which encourages urban density as an intelligent alternative to suburban sprawl. Smart land use code saves open space by enabling more people to live in our urban neighborhoods.
- Sustainable Development: We believe that our city—and planet—is best served by sustainable development. Simply put, smaller homes are more sustainable than bigger homes and new homes are more energy efficient than old homes. Smart land use code encourages development of smaller homes and more efficient homes.
- Economic Opportunity: We believe that homebuilding provides an important economic contribution to our city and also recognize that economic incentive is necessary to meet housing demand. Smart land use code imposes regulation without creating unnecessary economic barriers.
- Architectural Diversity: We believe that architectural diversity is part of the heritage of our neighborhoods and gives Seattle a unique personality. Smart land use code respects basic development patterns without discriminating against diverse designs.
- Housing Choice: Public policies, such as those implemented through the Seattle Jobs Plan, are attracting businesses and creating jobs across all income levels. Smart land use code supports housing choice by enabling homebuilders meet the needs of new workers.