Increased housing must go hand in hand with enhanced livability. The quality of housing options, as well as investment in community amenities, services and transit, are all critical if Seattle is to remain a great and welcoming place to live.

Our Priorities for Housing

  • Provide equitable housing policy that creates opportunity in all neighborhoods and for all types of people
  • Increase the supply of housing for all income levels
  • Increase flexibility to design a range of housing types and styles

AIA Projects

AIA sent a letter to Seattle City Councilmembers in support of redesignating single family zones as “neighborhood residential.”

AIA and NOMA NW asked Seattle City Councilmembers to recall legislation to provide density bonuses for affordable housing projects on land owned by religious organizations because it was amended to include a lower AMI level that is not achievable by Black and other churches.

SEPA Reform
AIA sent a letter to Seattle City Councilmembers in support of efforts to reform the city’s State Environmental Protection Act provisions to exempt certain appeals of completed environmental impact statements under SEPA in accordance with new state law.

AIA held a successful ADU tour showcasing innovative ADU designs by AIA members across the city.

AIA commented on the EIS scope for the City of Seattle’s ADU/DADU proposal in Nov. 2017 and the draft EIS in June 2018. We provided comments in support of the final legislation to Council in June 2019. In early 2018 AIA convened a Housing Task Force to inform AIA’s work on density, affordable housing, livability measures, and more. The Task Force sponsored an ADU Tour in Seattle in June 2019. AIA continues to work with the city on a program for pre-approved plans for DADUs.

Mandatory Housing Affordability
AIA’s Committee on Homelessness offered testimony in support of MHA during citywide hearings in Spring 2018 and our Housing Task Force met with councilmembers to review potential unintended consequences. AIA supported final passage of the MHA legislation in March 2019.

Surplus Land
AIA supported the city’s efforts to redevelop Fort Lawton to provide affordable housing to formerly homeless seniors and low-income families in March 2019.

AIA Publications

AIA Seattle Housing Policy Statement – Nov. 2021
AIA Seattle Position Statement on HALA, MHA & ADUs – June 2018


Mayor Durkan Announces Housing Seattle Now   August 2019
Seattle Enacts ADU Legislation   July 2019
Fort Lawton Redevelopment Plan Approved    June 2019
Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda Speaks to AIA on Housing    June 2019
Seattle Enacts Mandatory Housing Affordability    March 2019

External Resources

Seattle Planning Commission: Evolving Seattle’s Growth Strategy
Seattle Planning Commission: Neighborhoods for All
Housing Seattle Now
City of Seattle Housing Affordability and Livability Agenda
King County Regional Affordable Housing Task Force
Zoning Codes Primer – CityLab University

More Information

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.

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 aiawa.org.

National Advocacy

The AIA represents the interests of architects before 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 aia.org.

Seattle Design Festival

Seattle Design Festival

Seattle Design Festival connects designers, community members and civic leaders to explore the ways design improves our city and our lives - 2024 Call for Proposals launched April 3 and are due May 29! Read more