Keep on Rockin’ in the Free World! recently attended a public forum presented by the Mayor and his staff at Terra Plata restaurant on Seattle’s Capitol Hill. We left the forum newly aware that our mayor doesn’t understand or seem to care that Seattle is being bulldozed by greedy, single-minded developers bent on erasing neighborhood character and supplanting it with high rent, cheaply built apartments/condos coupled with strip mall aesthetics. We have written a response and included the contacts for the Mayor and the City Council. Please add your name and any other thoughts and forward the letter to them.


I feel I must take this opportunity to express my extreme disappointment with Mayor McGinn’s question and answer meeting at Terra Plata on Capitol Hill. As a long time resident of Seattle, I am concerned about low quality development. I am very pleased with the the light rail and other mass transit improvements coming to the Hill. However, the destruction of character buildings is a blight on our neighborhood. 

The issue is not density nor incentives for developers to build. Rather, the core issue is developing a long term vision backed by laws which preserve the attributes of Capitol Hill that make it an attractive neighborhood for businesses, residents, visitors and developers/investors.

Mayor McGinn’s attitude of we’ll wait and see, and there’s not much we can do is the weakest of leadership and extremely short sighted.  A vibrant neighborhood with unique, local small businesses and historic, character buildings is what creates the higher property values and encourages development. Development with an eye on preservation is the best path towards sustaining neighborhood value to businesses and builders, as well as residents and visitors.

I hope that the city will provide some pro-active leadership, if not from our apparently weak Mayor, then from the City Council.  

I and many of my neighbors care greatly about our Capitol Hill community. We will work hard to preserve it, and will definitely watch carefully whether or not our local politicians can rise to the challenge of real, innovative leadership.



(206) 684-4000
President Sally Clark:


Sally Bagshaw:


Tim Burgess:


Richard Conlin:


Jean Godden:


Bruce Harrell:

Nick Licata:


Mike O’Brien


Tim Burgess:

1222 East Madison, Seattle

Developer: Wallace Properties

Architect: Kevin Cleary at Baylis Architects


Uh oh, oooh noooo!  Are those cantaloupe accents on the windows?  Hey!  Maybe the sills are scratch and sniff, and the building will waft sweet melon on the breeze.  Otherwise, this is truly unsupportable . . . and we would have preferred strawberry.

In keeping with the neighborhood doesn’t mean matching the Public Storage on the next block. 

Sigh.  Here we go again.

May we suggest a “housing recovery” that doesn’t assault the senses.


100 Taylor Ave N

Architect: Cross 2

Developer: BRE Properties



Do you see a difference?

Neither do we.

The new lay of the land…



711 Bellevue Ave E.

We at CSC were a bit down in the mouth after wandering though these old digs.  Big, old houses with lives and details to spare…if only the walls could talk.


The prognosis is terminal. They’re coming down and the predictable multi units are going up. We cross our fingers for something good, or dare we hope even great, but we wouldn’t bet on that pony.

Hooray for the art, and so much love for the neighborhood. People wandering through kept commenting on how much they loved the houses, and writing longing letters of unrequited residential adoration in the guest books.

A secret shout out to the little red house in the back. We love you.


Will anyone ever love the new condos/apartments/giant vinyl crates this much?