growth | KUOW News and Information

growth

The newly constructed Arbora Court Apartments, with 133 units, is shown on Monday, April 23, 2018, in Seattle. Forty of the apartments have been set aside for families transitioning out of homelessness.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Renters already know that finding an affordable place in Seattle is near impossible. But sometimes local employers do not appreciate how bonkers the rental market really is. 

KUOW photo/Kate Walters

Seattle’s South Park neighborhood sits on the bank of the polluted Duwamish river, flanked by industry and split in two by Highway 99.

This is a neighborhood uniquely steeped in Hispanic culture and occupied by people with a deep passion for community.

It’s also a neighborhood staring down the barrel of change.


KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

Seattle is a growing city. Roads have gotten more congested, trails more crowded and housing prices have been on a steady climb up.  So what brings people into the city, and once they are here, why do they stay? 

These three women are among hundreds of seniors moving to Tukwila International Boulevard, a stretch of the former highway 99 once known for crime and prostitution.
KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

The city of Tukwila has spent years trying to turn a section of old highway 99 into a dense, walkable neighborhood. But it’s not easy to redefine a road. Now, Tukwila is getting some help from an unlikely population: seniors. 


Victoria Marshall is one of hundreds of seniors who live in subsidized senior housing just off Aurora. She has a view of the lake, but says she feels profoundly disconnected from civic and cultural life.
KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

Victoria Marshall was born in 1945, and she’s full of stories. She can talk about the four years she was homeless, about raising kids, or about her deep knowledge of animals, which she sometimes shares with people at the zoo.


Downtown Seattle accounts for more than half the city's construction investments, according to DSA.
KUOW Photo File/Megan Farmer

The bloom is off the boom.


Emily McArthur reacts on Monday, May 14, 2018, during the head tax vote at City Hall in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

The head tax is happening — but the weakened version passed by the Seattle City Council today won't address the scale of the housing crisis, some council members say.


Seattleites packed a City Hall meeting on Monday, where a vote on the contentious head tax was expected.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

A compromise has been struck over the controversial proposed Head Tax by the Seattle City Council. Over the weekend Councilmember Lorena Gonzalez worked with Mayor Jenny Durkan to come up with a plan they could both support. The new plan would raise an estimated $50 million a year instead of the original $75 million.

Volunteers count the number of people experiencing homelessness during the annual King County Point-In-Time count on Friday, January 25, 2018, in Pioneer Square.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Is Seattle the sort of place where, if you can’t afford it, there’s no room for you?


File photo of a homeless encampment under a bridge.
KUOW Photo

Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan is not ready to support the proposed employee head tax. This is the proposal for a per-employee tax on the city's highest grossing businesses.

The money would pay for low-income housing and services for homeless people. Amazon would be the number one payer of this tax and they are so opposed to it that they've halted construction on a new tower in Downtown Seattle. Also opposed to this head tax are local companies like Starbucks, Alaska Airlines and Dick's Drive-In.

The newly constructed Arbora Court Apartments, with 133 units, is shown on Monday, April 23, 2018, in Seattle. Forty of the apartments have been set aside for families transitioning out of homelessness.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Three years ago, the city told developers: You can either pay into a fund or build affordable housing units yourselves.

Listener Andrew Chinnici heard about that on KUOW and wanted to know: How is it working out?

Well, Andrew, so far there are permits for just 19 units through this fund.

A group of people jog across Lenora Street, on Thursday, October 5, 2017, in front of Amazon's biodomes, in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Would a tax credit that encourages businesses to donate to social services be more effective in solving the city's affordability and homelessness crisis than a new head tax?

Bill Radke talks to Saul Spady, president of Cre8ive Empowerment (and grandson of Dick's Drive-In co-founder Dick Spady) about why he and other area business owners are against the proposed Seattle employee head tax.

Light rail runs on the surface in Seattle's Rainier Valley.
KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

Nonprofit developers plan to build more than 300 affordable apartments in Seattle's First Hill neighborhood. The project is slated to go on surplus land that Sound Transit is handing over for free.

Ethan Kent, 26, uses a cart to transport his belongings as well as the belongings of friends away from a Ravenna encampment where he had been living for roughly a month and a half, on Wednesday, April 18, 2018, on the Burke-Gilman Trail in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Charlie Blackwood was running off three hours of sleep and seven cups of coffee when he packed up his belongings. He had been living with seven other people in a plot of woods in Ravenna, in northeast Seattle, when city crews arrived with trucks and shovels to clear it out.

Nichole Fabre drives the RapidRide E Line bus up and down Aurora. On a recent weekday morning, she started driving around 3:55 a.m., beginning in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

The most congested bus route in King County runs down Aurora. It’s called the RapidRide E Line. The crowding on those buses brings all kinds of people together.


An American flag is shown between rows of headstones in the Veterans section on Thursday, March 1, 2018, at Evergreen Washelli Cemetery in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Seattle’s biggest cemetery begins with a tragic story.  

This take on congestion pricing might blow your mind

Apr 9, 2018
There are around 12,000 paid on-street spaces in Seattle (that does not include private parking) .
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

An urban planning professor at UCLA examines congestion pricing and its impact on the poor. Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan proposed the idea last week. 

There are around 12,000 paid on-street spaces in Seattle (that does not include private parking) .
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

The Seattle City Council has approved a set of changes on where people can park in the city.

The idea: make better use of the parking lots we have and build fewer new ones. Some residents, however, think it will make it harder to find parking as the city grows.


A worker in Boise puts together an apartment bound for Seattle.
Guerdon Modular Design

The apartment complex at Aurora and North 109th Street in Seattle was built on the cheap.

A mural commissioned by the Aurora Merchants Association is shown on Monday, March 26, 2018, near the intersection of Aurora Avenue North and N.105th St., in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Aurora Avenue North is a place where you can buy a car, sell a car or get fancy rims for your tires. If your vehicle has ever been towed in north Seattle, you may have written a painfully large check to Lincoln Towing so they’d release it. For decades, Aurora’s business community has been dominated by car-oriented businesses.

That time is coming to an end. And those businesses are fighting to maintain what influence they have left.


Angel Hackman leads Ruby Oswell (center left) and her friends across Aurora's new crosswalk at 92nd on their way to school.
KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

Before there was I-5, there was Highway 99. 


Construction continues on a new apartment complex on Monday, March 12, 2018, at the intersection of Aurora Avenue North and 109th St., in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Commuters — in 43,000 cars every weekday — see Aurora Avenue as a river. Pedestrians trying to cross from one side to the other see it as a wall. 

In coming weeks, KUOW's Region of Boom team will explore how growth is changing State Route 99 from Shoreline to Tukwila.


A community meeting on Mandatory Housing Affordability at Northgate on March 12, 2018
KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

Residents of north Seattle want affordable housing, but are skeptical of the city’s plan to get that housing built by encouraging more development. That was the dominant message heard at Monday night’s public hearing in Northgate.

The Richard Hugo House on Capitol Hill in Seattle, 2010
Flickr Photo/Brent Ozar (CC BY)/https://flic.kr/p/8RCN8H

In the poem "Maybe This Building Should Go" — and a series of redactions —  Frances McCue considers the emotional pull of particular places and buildings. The poem is part of her collection "Timber Curtain."

Bill Radke talks with KUOW poetry correspondent Elizabeth Austen about McCue's new collection, including why the poet chose to redact or erase her own poems.

Amazon Spheres, downtown Seattle
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

If you've driven through South Lake Union in the last seven years, you have probably seen the structures emerge. Three round orbs made of steel and glass were filled with 40,000 plants from nearly 30 different countries to create an urban rainforest. 

Photo courtesy of Mitchell Frimodt

Bill Radke talks to Mitchell Frimodt, University of Washington junior and director of the UWashington Hyperloop team about the Hyperloop pod the team has built to compete in SpaceX Hyperloop Pod Competition in California. Since 2015 SpaceX has held a global competition with the hopes of speeding up the development of the hyperspeed train-like transportation system. 

But before you get excited at the idea of traveling at hyperspeed, Mark Hallenbeck, the director of the Washington State Transportation Center at the University of Washington explains why Hyperloop probably isn't coming to the Northwest anytime soon. 

From left, Amazon software development interns Min Vu, Cindy Wang, Jason Mar, Katie Shin and Louis Yang, walk after getting bananas from the Amazon Community Banana Stand outside of the Amazon Meeting Center on Thursday, October 5, 2017, in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

We’ve all noticed that Seattle feels like a younger city these days. Census data indicates that change is happening fast.

The number of adults under age 35 has been growing and much faster than in other tech capitals.

Seattle skyline
KUOW Photo/Gil Aegerter

Ross Reynolds talks to Zaki Hamid, a program director for Humanities Washington, about why he calls Seattle home and what has kept him here. And we  take calls from listeners who share their stories of how they make it work in the changing region. 

A toll area on Interstate 405.
Flickr Photo/SounderBruce (CC BY SA 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/ruiWYC

Bill Radke talks to Ed Barry, the Toll Division Director with the Washington State Department of Transportation, about a new report (PDF) that recommends raising the price of the top toll on Interstate 405 past $10.

It was one of a series of recommendations to keep traffic flowing on the busy corridor.  WSDOT has also conducted a study analyzing the effectiveness of I-405 tolling as the population in the region continues to grow. 

 Seattle mayor Jenny Durkan gives a rose to 4-year-old Araceli Cotto, after taking the oath of office on Tuesday, November 28, 2017, at the Ethiopian Community Center in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

It’s the first day of her new job. Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan reads her name on the door of her office at City Hall. What’s going through her head?

“It’s real. And the responsibility is enormous,” she told KUOW’s The Record.

Pages