The City’s HALA upzone plan will add capacity for an additional 81,582 units!

Increased zoned capacity due to HALA-MHA plan including those areas already upzoned will give the city 4 times what it needs to accommodate it’s regionally set ‘GMA’ 2035 residential target

Seattle’s zoned land use capacity rose to a high of 223,000 units in 2014 due to a decade of upzoning our neighborhoods.  But by the end of 2016, new residential growth pushed excess capacity down to a 205,959 unit figure.  HALA upzones already implemented in the ID-Chinatown, SLU/Downtown, Uptown, Central Area, and University District have pushed Seattle’s capacity back up to about 218,000 units.  Now the remaining HALA upzones, subject to  the current environmental review, will add capacity for another 69,520 units increasing the city’s total land use capacity to over 286,500 units.  That’s over 4 times the amount of capacity the city needs to meet its 2035 regionally set GMA target of 70,000 units and well over two and half times the HALA target or goal of 100,000 additional units by 2035. 

Screenshot 2017-12-13 at 6.18.32 PM

Sources for the chart include in order:

  • FEIS for HALA-MHA Housing Section 3.1-36 (source for total HALA capacity not including earlier HALA rezones)
  • Total zoned capacity effective 2017 – note our capacity had been as high as 223,000 units by 2014 according to the 2035 Capacity Analysis, but because of growth subsequent to that, it dropped to 205,959 figure by 2016.  (see Seattle Residential Permit Report)  HALA upzones already implemented in the UDistrict, Uptown, CID, Central Area and SLU/Downtown has pushed it up again now to slightly over 218,000 units
  • For University District Added Capacity see page 5 appendix of FEIS Housing Section
  • Source for convention center housing addition of 400 units 
  • source for capacity before CID upzone 9526, see page 11 of this document
  • source for added capacity following CID upzone 11 percent increase above 9526 see page 6
  • For added capacity accompanying the Central Area upzone: page 33 of the Directors Report where it shows capacity before rezone of 4295 units.  No where did the city specifically indicate the unit increase accompanying the upzone so we assumed 10 a percent increase in capacity due to the upzone here or 430 units.  This percent increase would parallel the percent increase due to HALA upzones in the CID and SLU/downtown so it seemed reasonable to work from this assumption.
  • For Uptown the 2035 Capacity Report showed a Uptown Capacity of 4165 units but according to the Directors Report, following the upzone there, it went up to a total of 8593 for an increase in capacity of 4428 units

About John V. Fox

Director, Seattle Displacement Coalition
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