urban planning

Environment
5:01 am
Mon February 24, 2014

Who You Should Call If You Trip On A Tree Root In Seattle

Younger trees can cause hazards because of poor planting conditions, such as here. The soil is too shallow.
Erin Hennessey photo KPLU News

Seattle is well-known as a city that loves its trees. The city even has a plan to increase its tree canopy to cover 30 percent of its open skies by the year 2037.

But the trees can sometimes get out of hand. Their powerful roots can be downright treacherous when they push through sidewalks.

So, what to do if you see one that has you worried? Or if you stub your toe on a bulging root? 

Read more
Seattle Mayoral Race 2013
5:01 am
Wed July 31, 2013

A Leading Question: Peter Steinbruck and Smart Growth

Bellamy Pailthorp KPLU News

Editor's note: KPLU has asked all nine candidates in the Seattle mayoral race to tell us about a time when his or her leadership skills were put to the test. One candidate's answer follows.  

Peter Steinbrueck served on the Seattle City Council for 10 years, from 1997 to 2007.

“They called me the activist council member. I’m also an architect, so I brought my background, experience, training as a problem solver and designer to public policy,” Steinbrueck said.

Read more
Fighting Urban Sprawl
12:10 pm
Tue July 24, 2012

Seattle deal would trade iconic views to preserve farmland and forests

King County's transfer of development rights program would be used to preserve rural farmland and forests while allowing taller buildings in South Lake Union.
courtesy King County

Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn and King County Executive Dow Constantine have proposed new development incentives for Seattle's bustling South Lake Union neighborhood.

The program would allow dramatically taller buildings in exchange for extra funds from developers to preserve farmland and forests in rural King County.

Read more
Urban Design
4:47 am
Mon June 4, 2012

Seattle's 'UpGarden' P-Patch takes community gardening to new heights

Photo by Nicole Kistler courtesy Kistler | Higbee Cahoot

It’s a first-of-its-kind in Seattle and perhaps even the country. Over the weekend, the city celebrated the opening of its first-ever rooftop community garden.  

Its design is garnering interest from around the region, as urban planners look for ways to integrate more open space and urban agriculture into increasingly dense neighborhoods.

Read more
Sound and urban environments
8:01 am
Mon May 23, 2011

Measuring noise with people in mind: Soundscapes

How peaceful is this scene? Acoustic engineer Brigitte Schulte-Fortkamp finds Seattle's Westlake Park "too noisy" to enjoy a leisurely cup of coffee.
Keith Seinfeld KPLU

There are probably places near where you live or work where it’s pretty noisy. The definition of what’s too loud is highly technical. Now, acoustical engineers have developed a new way of measuring noise that includes how it feels.

Read more
Post-viaduct Seattle
1:31 pm
Fri May 20, 2011

New York architect presents design ideas for Seattle waterfront

Computer-generated image of the proposed redesign and redevelopment of the Seattle Waterfront after the demolition of the Alaskan Way viaduct. This the the proposed " Beach at Pioneer Square", looking north.
Image by James Corner Field Operations, courtesy of the City of Seattle, 2011

Hundreds of people packed into a waterfront auditorium last night (Thurs.) in Seattle. They came to see concepts of what the city might look like, once the Alaskan Way Viaduct comes down.

Read more
Elliott Bay
7:30 am
Thu May 19, 2011

Seattle waterfront redesign moves ahead with presentation of ideas

A rendering of what designers could do with Pier 48 on the Seattle waterfront after the Alaskan Way Viaduct is demolished. This is one of several ideas that will be presented at an event Thursday, May 19, 2011 at Bell Harbor Conference Center.
James Corner Field Operations

Soon, the public will have an opportunity to see some initial ideas for what Seattle’s waterfront could look like after the Alaskan Way Viaduct comes down. The city plans to redevelop 26 blocks along Elliott Bay between King Street and Broad Street.

Designers from James Corner Field Operations will present preliminary concepts and ask for input tonight at Bell Harbor Conference Center on Pier 66.  

Read more
Street lights
12:37 pm
Wed January 5, 2011

Saying goodbye to decorative street lights?

Decorative streetlight in Belltown in downtown Seattle.
Paula Wissel

Those quaint streetlights that grace some neighborhood business districts in Seattle may be history.  Seattle City Light wants to limit the installation of decorative streetlights in the future.  This comes in the wake of the city’s ongoing inspection of light poles, some of which have been emitting dangerous levels of electricity.

Read more
Managing Growth
9:02 pm
Tue December 21, 2010

Lakewood releases Lewis-McChord growth coordination plans

Traffic along I-5 in the area of Joint Base Lewis-McChord often looks like this, and is getting worse a the base's population booms.
NorthwestMilitary.com

When 17-thousand troops returned from deployments in Iraq and Afghanistan this past fall, Joint Base Lewis McChord became the 3rd largest employer in the state. 

That's according to the City of Lakewood, which has released a plan to accommodate the rapid population growth in the communities around the base. 

Read more