Thursday, January 8, 2015

City Money for Park and Street Improvement Projects

(Full details here)
As you may be aware, the 2015 Adopted and 2016 Endorsed Budget adds additional funding to the Neighborhood Parks and Street Fund in 2015 and 2016. The City’s intent is to implement more of the projects that have been or will be (for 2016) identified, vetted, and recommended by neighbors and District Councils through the NPSF selection process.

What this means for 2015 projects
This past summer, District Councils prioritized nearly $2 million in project requests to be considered for implementation in 2015. As typical, each District was awarded at least one project – generally the highest priority project as determined by the District Council.

To decide how to allocate the additional $1 million in 2015 funding, Seattle Department of Neighborhoods (DON) and Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) met in December to review the 2015 prioritized projects that did not receive funding in the original review. These projects had been approved by SDOT and received a cost estimate, but did not go forward in the process (or were not fully funded) because the original NPSF budget ($1.2 million) was fully allocated. With additional funds, these projects can be funded and/or some of the projects already approved for 2015 can receive additional funding. Any funds not allocated for 2015 projects will automatically carry over into the 2016 NPSF budget.

For 2016 NPSF projects<>, DON will begin taking new applications on January 1, 2015 for approximately $2.2 million in funding (up from $1.2 million).  The application deadline for 2016 NPSF is Monday, February 9, 2015.

If you have any questions please discuss with your Neighborhood District Coordinator (  or contact me directly at James.Bush@Seattle.Gov or via telephone at 206.233.5044.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Community Solar program thanks to Capitol Hill Housing

Hi Neighbors!

I have an update on a really exciting neighborhood project to share with you! The Capitol Hill EcoDistrict, which is a neighborhood sustainability initiative led by Capitol Hill Housing, has recently launched a new Community Solar program in partnership with Seattle City Light.
Community Solar is a way for residents to participate and receive the benefits of solar without having their own solar arrays on their roof—and in this case also supports a great cause! Anyone who pays a City Light bill can now buy-in to our fully built (and running!) “shared” Community Solar array, which is located atop one of Capitol Hill Housing’s affordable housing properties at 10th and E. John St., the Holiday Apartment building. They will then earn their money back via credits on their City Light bills based on the solar energy generated. When the program ends in 2020, participants are expected to have earned back their entire investment, plus a little extra! The solar array will then be donated to Capitol Hill Housing to continue to support affordable housing. Basically it’s a win-win-win for everyone!
So to recap:
1.     Buy Solar Units: Any City Light customer can sign up, starting at $150
2.     Get Paid Back: Earn your investment back via credits on your bill until 2020
3.     Feel Good: This project produces clean energy, supports the regional economy (all of the system components and labor are locally sourced!), and reduces the long-term operating costs of affordable housing.
If you’re interested in learning more about our work, check out our website and follow us on facebook or twitter!

You can also reach the EcoDistrict Outreach Coordinator, Arielle Lawson (me!) at