Queen Anne Community Council – Land Use Review Committee Planning Meeting


 Hello Neighbors

Happy New Year!!

Queen Anne Community Council
Land Use Review Committee
Planning Committee

Note: Revised Meeting Date!

Please share with friends and neighbors

  1. Safeway redevelopment and other updates
  2. The Key Arena Signage Proposals
  3. 2220 Queen Ave N – a new 45-unit 6-story apartment


Date: Wednesday, January 22, 2020 Time: 7:00 pm

Location: Queen Anne Community Center, 1901 1st Avenue West, Room 1

Good Morning Neighbors;

As we head into a new decade, there are many new projects planned within our Queen Anne neighborhood that we have invited, and will continue to invite to present their proposals to our community. For those new to Queen Anne and our LURC (Land Use Review Committee), please come and learn and ask questions about how these new projects will contribute to the future of our city and QA in particular. We have a very interesting slate for this meeting as I will describe below:


7:00pm – 7:05pm: Updates on Safeway redevelopment and other neighborhood projects

7:05pm – 8:05pm: Key Arena Signage Proposal

Paula Rees, City of Seattle Planners, Arena developers, and others

The City Council and Mayor have passed legislation amending the city’s sign code, which allows the renovated Seattle Arena to become a special “sign overlay district.” This designation gives the Arena the right to display the opposite of long-held regulations on the type of signs, size, quantity, height, motion, and light levels. The sign code also sets the law on temporary signs and off-premise advertising prohibitions.

This code amendment gives the Seattle Arena approximately 70 signs, including large digital screens, or changing color features for new rooftop signs, and outlining the roofline. The result is more, bigger, taller, brighter, and the ability to display full-motion video. It also includes lucrative sponsorship advertising (most often casinos, alcohol, cars, entertainment, telecom, etc.).

This news was brought to the QACC by Paula Rees, principal of environmental design practice in Seattle for four decades. Her specialty is creating public places from Barcelona to Sunset Blvd. She served as a past president of the International Society for Experiential Design (SEGD), which sets professional standards for how cities communicate. Rees has developed many ‘special district’ overlays for other municipalities. We have invited Key Arena officials, city planning and permitting staff, and others to present and describe the digital signage proposals and answer your questions. Paula writes more below after agenda:

Potential Examples from similar development in LA.

8:05pm – 9:05pm: 2220 Queen Anne Ave N (just north of Boston)

Scot Carr, Architect with Public47 Architects

2220 Queen Anne Avenue N. a 45 Unit, 6 floor apartment building providing 4 parking spaces. Scot Carr, Architect with Public 47 Architects will present their project. I have attached their current City of Seattle permit submission here: The Project Proposal

Aerial view of proposal looking northeast from Starbucks towards McGraw and Queen Anne Ave N

See you Wednesday, January 22, 2020 at 7:00pm. As always, please come join your neighbors in learning and asking questions about developments in our neighborhood. Our meetings are always open to all and committed to a transparent, supportive and respectful engagement of ideas that help inform the character and future of our Queen Anne community.

Thanks as always for your interest and involvement,

Martin Kaplan, AIA

Chair LURC

More from Paula on the Arena signage:

With significant changes in manufacturing, materials, and lighting, numerous professionals have been working since the 1990s to get the City of Seattle to update the antiquated sign code with relevant terminology and regulations that address today’s technology. Seattle’s sign code has not been comprehensively reviewed since 1974; instead, changes have been on a case-by-case basis and patched together through Director’s Rule, including this significant change.

Members of Keep Seattle Beautiful will also attend. They have discovered Seattle’s public has been overwhelmingly in favor of continuing its legacy of protecting scenic vistas and beauty over commercial branding. As have the State’s citizens, with legislative protections successfully realized to keep digital billboards off the State’s highways and scenic byways. They will submit ideas for proposed amendments to the new legislation (reduce light levels, specific timing of use, speed of message changes— especially motion facing the public right-of-way or residential, animation/video?, no alcohol/cannabis ads, controlled sequencing of multiple image change, safety near streets and light signals, no sound, nor data-mining in public space, added sunset clause, and question profit-sharing on sponsorship revenues, plus use of standard sign industry terminology including luminance vs brightness). Examples of what this stadium package will look like will also be shared, including recent video taken at LA Live, which is pertinent, as it was a previous project of Oak View’s CEO with AEG Media.

Neither the Design Commission nor Landmarks were engaged. If these laws are to be changed, then Rees suggests whether it’s Seattle or Wichita, Kansas, each city’s public needs to be made fully aware as to what the impact of these evolving technology changes are about and be able to question or make a comment on the details per the lawful process. History shows this kind of allowance will more than likely open up legal challenges for the same with others like the Sodo stadiums, and the banned billboard industry. Is this what Seattle wants?


Martin Henry Kaplan, Architects AIA

Seattle Office

360 Highland Drive, Seattle WA 98109

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Sun Valley Idaho Office

251 Hillside Drive, PO 482, Ketchum, ID 83340

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