Architects care about the places they live, and have the knowledge and tools to make a difference through design.

Through advocacy, AIA Seattle promotes a well-designed, sustainable city with opportunities for all and creates opportunities for architects to impact public policy and civic issues. Our advocacy agenda spans all scales of design in our city. AIA Seattle’s Public Policy Board (PPB) leads our advocacy efforts. Input and ideas from members are always welcome.

Ongoing Advocacy Priorities Include:

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Latest Advocacy Updates

Comp Plan Engagement Period Extended, Housing Learning and Connection Opportunities – May 2024

AIA Seattle Advocates for a Livable Seattle –Read the letter to Mayor Harrell, Councilmembers, and OPCD and SDCI staff.

Get Involved with the Draft Comprehensive Plan, and a Supreme Court Case on Housing – April 2024

The Draft One Seattle Comprehensive Plan Released and the 2024 Legislative Session Wraps – March 2024

Committee on Homelessness Advocates for Increased Housing Density in Light of Upcoming Supreme Court Case – in response to putting forward the Amicus Curiae brief to the Supreme Court – February 2024

The 2024 Legislative Session Begins, and AIA WA members head to Olympia for Capitol Connections – January 2024

Look to our Archive below for additional Advocacy Updates. 

State Advocacy

AIA Washington Council is hard at work for you, promoting legislation on green buildings and livable places, supporting a sustainable state economy, and protecting your ability to practice architecture. Learn more at

National Advocacy

The AIA represents the interests of architects before the federal government and policy-making bodies. This outreach, coupled with sustained member participation and active involvement in the political process, enables the AIA to advocate on behalf of legislative, regulatory, and related issues important to AIA members. Learn more at or review AIA National’s 2020 policy platform here.


For additional information on AIA Seattle public policy priorities and activities, or to share your views as an AIA Seattle member, contact Executive Director, Melissa K. Neher

Advocacy Updates Archive



AIA Seattle’s Public Policy Board issued two letters to Mayor Harrell and Seattle Councilmembers: one seeking real transformational and transactional change in the Design Review process; the other regarding balancing trees and housing in Seattle tree protection updates. – December 2022

AIA Seattle’s Comprehensive Plan Work Group has taken a position to request rigorous study through EIS Scopingof the best options for Seattle as a unique and vibrant place to live and work, as a tightly knit network of strong neighborhoods, and a place where access to opportunity, housing, and services are enjoyed by everyone. – August 2022

AIA Seattle’s Public Policy Board issued a draft climate policy statement to help us prioritize engagement in climate solutions. A final version of the statement will be approved by the AIA Seattle board of Directors in 2023. – July 2022

Seattle releases its draft tree ordinance; building performance standards move from state to local; your opportunity to weigh in on AIA’s work around Design Review and trees – March 2022

The White House engages on building performance; comments needed on the state commercial energy code; an update on legislative action in Olympia – February 2022

The 2021 state commercial energy code opens for comments; AIA|WA navigates the state legislative session; and AIA Seattle plans major efforts on the Seattle Comp Plan Update and Design Review – January 2022


Seattle’s 2022 budget is finalized; local governments make headway in support of building electrification; C-PACER passes in Snohomish County; CE events to get you ready for the state legislative session – December 2021

A big fail by the state redistricting commission; C-PACER comes to King County; Mayor Durkan announces climate initiatives from Glasgow; opportunities to serve on Seattle boards; ongoing Comp Plan programming – November 2021

Energy codes continue to move away from fossil gas; single family zones renamed; King County moves out of the shadows on climate; opportunities to join the Seattle Planning Commission or sign up for advocacy training – October 2021

Getting serious about replacing the B&O; renaming single family zones; proposed Design Review changes; AIA’s Housing Policy Statement; Seattle Budget School – September 2021

Neighborhood Residential’s moment arrives; small lot development standards proposed for Belltown; Seattle’s new stormwater code goes into effect; new uses for downtown storefronts are under consideration; and Climate Advocacy Week returns! – August 2021

A CA judge paves the way for new gas bans; Washington rolls out its new Clean Building Performance Standard; OPCD issues its race and social justice growth strategy report; “neighborhood residential” makes its formal debut – July 2021

Washington’s state legislative session concludes; the Attorney General weighs in on the stamping of architectural documents; Seattle’s Comprehensive Plan update is set to kick off; and AIA Seattle presents 15-Minute Seattle – May 2021

A federal push for greater housing supply; the State Legislature adjourns on April 25; King County’s new energy code update; housing development around Sound Transit’s new light rail stations; opportunities to participate in AIA Seattle’s policy programming – April 2021

President Biden reversed Trump’s classical architecture mandate; the state legislature passes the halfway mark; Seattle’s Comprehensive Plan process gets ready for public engagement; AIA Seattle kicks off 15-Minute Seattle programming; opportunities to join local, state, and national boards and committees – March 2021

Federal advocacy on green infrastructure; an update on the state legislative session; Seattle passes its energy code update; Seattle Public Schools votes on a fossil fuel free future – February 2021

State building code (again); the state legislative session kicks off; Rico Quirindongo AIA hits city hall; Seattle updates its green building incentive; your opportunity to meet the state Legislature’s only architect – January 2021


A state legislative session like no other; Climate Advocacy Week wrap-up; new affordable housing measures in Seattle – December 2020

State election results; Washington’s new (draft) State Energy Strategy; AIA’s Climate Advocacy Week; Seattle Design Review Board vacancies – November 2020

VOTE VOTE VOTE! Washington’s State Energy Strategy; AIA Seattle’s Climate Advocacy Week; King County sales tax for homeless housing; residential electrification tips; AIA Washington Council’s advocacy training – October 2020

National AIA policy platform, state rulemaking updates, Omnibus legislation, virtual Design Review, Portland’s zoning reform – August 2020

Social Justice, Codes and movement on opening of offices – June 2020

Inching toward Phase 2; designers hack hand washing on the streets; Seattle rolls out Stay Healthy Streets; your opportunity to help develop ICC code – May 2020

COVID resources, more climate webinars, legislative adjustments to Seattle’s MHA program and its ADU laws – April 2020

COVID-19 updates, Architect Advocacy in action, the state legislative session concludes in Olympia; the YIMBY Act moves forward in Washington, D.C.; AIA supports a delay in Seattle’s 2018 codes implementation – March 2020

Trump Administration proposal on federal building design; the state legislative session passes the halfway mark; new solid waste guidance from SPU; Seattle’s Green New Deal; Mayor Durkan’s Affordable Middle-Income Housing Advisory Council issues recommendations – February 2020

2020 state legislative session underway in Olympia; the Seattle Planning Commission weighs in on a new growth strategy for Seattle; Mayor Durkan issues a directive for all-electric municipal buildings; Seattle’s pre-approved DADU program is open for submittals; SDCI seeks Accela feedback – January 2020


AIA joins a regional housing coalition; Seattle completes its 2020 budget; Seattle seeks comments on SEPA thresholds and solid waste storage – December 2019

AIA works on the state’s implementation process for the new energy performance standard for commercial buildings; the Seattle City Council closes out the budget and other last minute items prior to the new council taking office in January; AIA|WA state legislative agenda set in advance of the 2020 session’s January kick-off – November 2019

AIA|WA’s Advocacy Summit, pre-approved plans for DADUs, AIA Seattle’s Housing Policy Statement, Seattle’s budget process – October 2019

Local, state, and national action on climate; AIA’s policy statement on homelessness; local transportation initiatives; your chance to “Taco-bout Justice” – September 2019

Seattle’s bold moves on climate; Durkan announces Housing Seattle Now; and the Central City Connector Streetcar gets the green light – August 2019

ADU legislation signed; AIA National’s Disruption, Evolution and Change; an architect joins the State House – July 2019

ADUs, Fort Lawton Redevelopment and Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda’s appearance at our first City Leaders Breakfast – June 2019

State Legislature Adjourns; updates to Seattle housing legislation, and Affordable Housing Week – May 2019

AIA pledges support for Invest in America Act, the 2019 legislative session nears the finish line; and AIA Seattle focuses in on housing through a variety of events – April 2019

Updates from AIA Grassroots, Olympia, and Shift Zero; plus MHA passes, and more – March 2019

AIA hosts Virtual Capitol Hill Day, updates on the 2019 legislative session from AIA|WA, & opportunities to get involved – February 2019

2019 Legislative Session Kicks Off; AIA Seattle Joins the Housing Development Consortium – January 2019