Advocacy Update – June 2023

This Month in Advocacy: Updates to Architects Environmentally Responsible Policy; Architects in Action Conference; Draft Plan and DEIS Delayed Release Date; Seattle Housing Levy Endorsement.

Call for Feedback: Updates to Architects are Environmentally Responsible Policy

We are excited to announce that AIA National is undertaking an important initiative to update the Architects are Environmentally Responsible section of the AIA Public Policy statements and accept feedback from members.

Recognizing the urgency of climate action, AIA declared it a priority in 2019. However, the current Architects are Environmentally Responsible policy was last reviewed and approved by the Board of Directors in 2017, predating this priority declaration. To bridge this gap and ensure this policy aligns with recent AIA statements, a subgroup of the Committee on the Environment (COTE) was assigned the task of leading this effort.

Your input is crucial in shaping the direction of this policy. We invite you to review the proposed updates, which are available in two formats: a redlined version highlighting the changes and a clean version for easy reading.

To provide your feedback, you can send your written comments directly to Anne Law. All feedback must be submitted by the close of business on Thursday, July 27th.

In addition to written feedback, AIA National is hosting virtual Zoom feedback sessions to facilitate interactive discussions. These sessions will provide you with an opportunity to engage with fellow AIA members and share your thoughts on the proposed updates. We encourage you to participate in one of these sessions to make your voice heard. Here are the details for the Zoom feedback sessions:

July 12 (Wed) 5:00 – 6:30 pm EST
July 18 (Tues) 2:00 – 3:30 pm EST
July 27 (Thurs) 5:00 – 6:30 pm EST

Please reach out to Anne Law to sign up for any of these sessions.

AIA National – Architects in Action Conference

At this 2-day virtual conference, participants hear and learn about state and local legislative trends, meet with colleagues from across the country, and share advocacy-related lessons. Learn more here.


OPCD Reschedules Release Date for Draft Plan and DEIS to Early September

The Office of Planning and Community Development (OPCD) has announced a revised release date for the highly anticipated draft Comprehensive Plan and DEIS. Originally slated to be shared in June, the release has now been rescheduled to early September.

OPCD has decided to allocate additional time to complete the draft plan, ensuring that it fully incorporates valuable community input, responds to new state requirements and prepares comprehensive materials for their upcoming fall engagement activities.

The decision to reschedule is driven by OPCD’s commitment to creating a Plan that accurately reflects the aspirations and concerns of the community. By allowing for more time, they aim to carefully integrate the feedback received, address evolving state regulations, and prepare for meaningful engagement in the coming months.

As the release date approaches, members are encouraged to stay engaged in the Comp Plan Work Group and continue offering their perspectives to shape the future of their neighborhoods and environment.


AIA Seattle Board of Directors Votes to Endorse Seattle Housing Levy

Based on the recommendation of the Public Policy Board, the AIA Seattle Board of Directors voted to endorse the Seattle Housing Levy. Since its establishment in 1986, the Seattle Housing Levy has played a vital role in addressing the city’s affordable housing challenges. Over the years, it has been a crucial funding mechanism responsible for the creation and preservation of more than 11,000 affordable rental homes and 1,000 opportunities for homeownership.

The Levy takes a strategic approach to combat rising rents, limited housing supply, and homelessness through targeted investments over a seven-year period. Its primary focus areas include the construction of affordable housing, support for homeownership, and preservation of existing units.

With the launch of the 2023 Levy, the goal is to create an additional 3,000 affordable homes, including supportive housing, while also empowering low-income individuals and families through homeownership opportunities. The success of the Levy is evident, as over 95% of households who have received assistance have remained stably housed.

As Seattle faces an ongoing affordable housing crisis and the threat of displacement, the Seattle Housing Levy stands as a proven and indispensable component of the city’s efforts to address these challenges.

We’d love to hear from you! To comment or for more information on these or any other topics, please contact:

Samantha Morrow
Senior Manager of Policy & Advocacy
AIA Seattle & AIA Washington Council
206-957-1926 |