The Weber Thompson office is full of talented, passionate individuals who care about the issues surrounding our city. Last month a few of these individuals stepped up to help us participate in the Housing Development Consortium’s (HDC) 2017 Affordable Housing Week. The week took place from May 15th-22nd and focused on the growing issue of affordability and livability in Seattle. Continue reading ““Rad Row House”: A Musical Celebration of Affordable Housing Week”
A little over three years ago, Bellwether Housing invited Weber Thompson to partner in the design and development of a piece of land owned by University Christian Church (UCC). In collaboration with Compass Alliance Housing, Bellwether Housing has been helping the church parishioners realize a dream – sparked in the 1960’s – of transforming their parking lot into affordable housing. Continue reading “Arbora Court: A dream decades in the making begins to come true”
The African proverb ‘it takes a village’ was turned sideways last week at the annual Housing Development Consortium (HDC) Celebration Luncheon. Playing off a prime time TV series, the event presented “We Are HDC” as the theme to represent the 130+ organizations and their 16,600 employees who are members of HDC. Continue reading “We Are HDC: Our part in providing more affordable housing”
This week we sent out a newsletter highlighting our 2017 Impact Initiatives. Continue reading “Explore Our Impact Initiatives for 2017 & Beyond”
In the summer of 2016 Weber Thompson started with a simple idea: to design, build, and donate basic shelter for a family in need through the Low Income Housing Institute’s (LIHI) Tiny House program. How hard could it be for a few architects to build an 8’ x 12’ structure over a few weekends, right? Continue reading “It Takes a Village”
On September 20th, Weber Thompson joined Bellwether Housing, members of the University Christian Church congregation, public officials, and community members to celebrate the groundbreaking of Arbora Court.
Years in the making, this new affordable family housing project will be home to individuals and families living in 133 units. The location is ideal – close to transit stops, grocery stores, a farmers market, medical facilities and other community amenities in the University District of Seattle. The site was formerly a parking lot owned by the University Christian Church, but was sold to Bellwether Housing so it could eventually be transformed into affordable housing. Continue reading “Breaking Ground at Arbora Court”
Weber Thompson’s participation in the 2016 Food Frenzy competition came to end last Friday in a sweet and delectable fashion. On Monday, July 18th, the office held a bake sale in the lobby and last Friday, July 22nd, the fun concluded with an ice cream social in the office. The Weber Thompson team participated by bringing in homemade baked goods, desserts from local businesses and by purchasing “build your own” ice cream sundaes with unlimited toppings. Continue reading “WT Food Frenzy: A Fantastic Finale”
I recently had the pleasure of attending the grand opening for Raven Terrace, which marks the second completed low-income, multifamily building in Seattle’s Yesler Terrace neighborhood. While the completion of great multi-family projects is work as usual here at Weber Thompson, this project has special significance to me personally and also for the city of Seattle.
Three years ago, Weber Thompson hired me as a part of their high rise studio. However, due to shifting project schedules my first role was project designer on Raven Terrace. I was excited to tackle something new and different. While I had volunteered with Habitat for Humanity before, my familiarity with “government housing” was somewhat antiquated. I quickly learned Seattle Housing Authority (SHA) takes the design quality of their projects seriously. To ensure our team’s design could respond to the community the building would serve, SHA shepherded meetings for us with the Yesler Terrace neighborhood and future building tenants. Understanding the backgrounds and stories from the neighborhood enriched the building design and better equipped us to serve the residents. Furthermore, with sweeping views of the city and Mount Rainier, the site held plenty of potential for something exceptional. Most importantly though, SHA’s vision for evolving a healthy, vibrant and accessible community in the heart of Seattle drove the success of Raven Terrace. Continue reading “From paper to reality: Watching Raven Terrace come to life”
On Thursday, October 8th, Weber Thompson team members and guests attended Bellwether Housing’s annual Closer to Home fundraising breakfast at Benaroya Hall.
After some early morning mingling and coffee, the program began with opening remarks from Doug Daley, Bellwether’s new Executive Director. Marc Stiles of the Puget Sound Business Journal moderated the main event: a powerful panel of three speakers who’ve relied on the affordable housing that Bellwether provides.
One resident had been a hard working sous-chef with two full time jobs, saving to open his own business when he was struck and disabled by a drunk driver. Unable to work and forced to live on a very limited income, this proud man was able to stay in the city, with the dignified living standards he deserves. He remains close to his community and his many doctors rather than being forced out away from the care he needs or even into homelessness through no fault of his own.
Another current resident told of her important but low paying work in community health for a local non-profit. Bellwether Housing allows her to live close to her job, within the community she serves. Unlike many of her peers, she now has no fear of being priced out due to rising rents.
Finally, a former resident told a similar story. Young and new to the area, trying to get a foothold in Seattle, she was able to live in the city near her non-profit job thanks to Bellwether Housing. Now she’s further along in her career and more established, but she and her family face new challenges in affordability as they save for home ownership.
The breakfast event was attended by 275 early risers and raised over $139,000 to support affordable housing and help create more stories like the ones above.
As an advocate level sponsor of the event, we at Weber Thompson are proud to support such a worthy cause. Bellwether Housing is a valued client of ours, and events such as this are a good reminder why we get up in the morning to do what we do.
Special thanks to our staff members and guests who attended:
Alistair Jackson, O’Brien and Company
Catherine Benotto, Weber Thompson
Kris Draper, Morrison Hershfield
Lukas Hovee, 360 Analytics
Mike Nouwens, Nouwens Structural Consultants
Mindy Black, Weber Thompson
Noelle Dobry, Weber Thompson
Rae Anne Rushing, Rushing Engineers
Stacy Segal, Seattle Architecture Foundation
Thank you all so much for your generosity. We look forward to another great event next year.
– Jeff Reibman, AIA, LEED AP BD+C
Principal, Weber Thompson
2015 Closer to Home Table Captain
Five Weber Thompson staff and five guests joined 700 others in support of affordable housing at the Housing Development Consortium’s 7th annual member celebration luncheon.
The HDC is a non-profit organization whose mission we strongly support: to promote collaboration and cooperation among the many different people and agencies working to meet the housing needs of limited income residents throughout King County. Providing access to safe, affordable housing is a cause we are passionate about and are dedicated to supporting. Continue reading “A home for all: Supporting affordable housing in King County”