Here's how YOU can help King County develop new North Highline Urban Design Standards – The White Center Blog

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Sep 20, 2021 | , , , , | 0
King County Local Services is working with the North Highline community to create urban design standards for new commercial, multi-family, and mixed-use developments, the county recently announced.
“To align these new design standards with the community’s values, we’re forming a community advisory group to help develop these standards in a way that reflects the values and assets of the community,” the county said. “If you’re interested in applying to be a member of that group, please use our online application form.”
The project team is also gathering input directly from community members through an online survey and upcoming events. and is asking residents to please take the survey here.
Here’s more info about the project:
The purpose of this project is to create urban design standards for new commercial, multi-family, and mixed-use developments in North Highline.
North Highline is a 2.7 square mile urban area in unincorporated King County that includes the communities of White Center, Top Hat, Glendale, and the South Park “Sliver by the River.” Like many neighborhoods in the Seattle area, North Highline is experiencing development pressure and the community has expressed a strong desire to have urban design standards in place to protect and enhance the community’s character.
The King County Council has directed Local Services to study and develop urban design standards that prioritize the pedestrian environment, encourage human-scale design and reflect the character of the North Highline community. The new urban design standards are expected be transmitted to the King County Council by June 30, 2022.
Meaningful public engagement is key to this project’s success. It’s how we’ll make sure that the design standards reflect the community’s values. We’ll hold a series of public events throughout the project with opportunities for community members to contribute their thoughts and ideas.
WHAT ARE URBAN DESIGN STANDARDS AND GUIDELINES?
Design standards and guidelines are design frameworks intended to preserve and enhance the desired character of existing neighborhoods and improve the aesthetic and functional quality of new development projects. They are used during the design review process, in which project designs are evaluated and approved.
Design standards are mandatory design requirements that must be met for the project to be approved. Design guidelines are suggestions that are not required. The guidelines are more flexible and provide different approaches to meeting the design standards.
While urban design standards typically focus on aesthetic issues, we want to include a broad definition of urban design that also considers ways to make your community safer, more equitable, healthier, more connected, and more environmentally sound.

To learn more about the project, contact Jesse Reynolds by email or at 206-477-4237.
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