UW News

November 5, 2003

UW architecture program gives youth a voice on Seattle waterfront

Seattle’s post-Viaduct waterfront should provide an outdoor educational environment for studying history, culture and ecology — as well as a skateboard park.

So say high school students at Queen Anne’s Center School who were asked to inject the voice of youth into the future of the downtown waterfront.

The students will offer their “wish list” of ideas Friday to the city Planning and Design commissions at the Odyssey Maritime Discovery Center. The Central Waterfront Forum begins at 9, with the youth presentation scheduled for 11, followed by Mayor Greg Nickels at 11:15.

After an initial waterfront workshop last June drew more than 100 adults but no young people, forum organizers asked the University of Washington’s Center for Environment, Education and Design Studies (CEEDS) to find meaningful ways include the young in planning the waterfront’s future.

“You are the future taxpayers who will have the power to support, or reject, this undertaking,” Sharon Sutton, a UW architecture professor and director of CEEDS, told the youths last month. “We want you on our side.”

The Planning and Design commissions are working with CityDesign, the Port of Seattle and various stakeholders to plan for the future of Seattle’s waterfront. The forums are seen as an opportunity to create a long term vision that helps to shape the Viaduct project as well as other public and private plans for the area.

For more information, contact Sutton at (206) 685-3361 or sesut@u.washington.edu, or Center School Principal Brian Vance at (206) 252-9850 or brvance@seattleschools.org. The CEEDS WEb site is http://ceeds.caup.washington.edu