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Why Seattle Needs a Downtown Urban Design Plan

The City of Seattle is in the process of updating its Comprehensive Plan. What’s missing? A clear direction for physical development in our downtown.

A policy framework is insufficient to achieve the urban outcomes we all desire; we also need specific, physical recommendations for urban form and shape, to guide investment. How can we visualize, through plans and illustrations, how growth and development can contribute to a greater whole? Could Seattle benefit from an Urban Design Plan, like so many other large cities have developed? Join moderator Dennis Haskell and panelists Lee Copeland, Barbara Gray, Don Stastny and Heidi Bullinga to explore the value of a new urban design plan for Seattle.

Dennis Haskell FAIA, an architect and urban designer and Principal with SRG in Seattle, has influenced our region through the development of urban centers and transportation systems. He served as Chair of the Seattle Design Commission and is currently Chair of the State Capitol Campus Design Advisory Committee.

Lee Copeland FAIA, is an architect and urban designer, and currently a consulting principal at the Seattle office of Mithun. He served as Dean and Paley Professor of architecture and city planning at the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Fine Arts (now PennDesign) and in that capacity also served as Chair of Philadelphia’s Planning Commission.

Barbara Gray, SDOT Deputy Director of Planning & Development, oversees development of Seattle’s public realm and is the executive lead for the ongoing One Center City Plan. She has led the effort to improve the pedestrian environment throughout Seattle.

Don Stastny, FAIA, is a multiple award winning architect and urban designer with his Portland firm, STASTNY: Architect. He has worked extensively in the Northwest and was instrumental in preparing and implementing Portland’s 1988 Central City Plan which has since successfully guided Portland’s downtown growth and development.

Heidi Bullinga, AIA, is an architect and urban designer for ZGF where she leads the urban design discipline for their Seattle office. Previous to moving to Seattle she worked and taught extensively in New York City where her involvement revolved around transit stations and routes in Manhattan.


This event, hosted by AIA Seattle's PPB is a part of the Seattle Design Festival.


September 13, 2016
5:30 pm - 7:00 pm


Design in Public


Center for Architecture & Design
1010 Western AVE
Seattle, WA 98104 United States
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Design in Public

Why Seattle Needs a Downtown Urban Design Plan

Every year, the Seattle Design Festival brings together designers, community members, experts, city officials, and business leaders to celebrate and explore how design improves the quality of our lives and our community. 2019 is the year of Balance. From August 16–25, the Seattle Design Festival (SDF) will connect designers, community members and civic leaders to explore how we design for Balance. Submissions closed May 22, 5pm PT. The Seattle Design Festival is a program of Design in Public, a multidisciplinary…


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