Belltown neighbors try to fight low-income housing project

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SEATTLE —

 

 People who live in Seattle's Belltown neighborhood are trying to fight a low-income housing project.

 

Many who attended a meeting Tuesday night took the focus off the building's design and put it on who is set to move in.

 

One upset neighbor sent meeting notices to residents all over Belltown that led some residents to believe they could stop the project.

 

As the architect went over the design of the seven-story, 65-unit affordable housing project during the meeting, neighbors waited for the comment period.

 

“We can’t take anymore Plymouth buildings in our neighborhood,” said neighbor Chris Sadowsky.

 

Not everyone shared his opinion.

 

“We should open our hearts.  We should approve a project like this,” said resident Barb Nystrom.

 

Many of the neighbors came to the meeting after receiving a flyer in the mail thinking they could keep the Plymouth Housing Group from constructing another low-income housing building.  The latest project is on Third Avenue between Virginia and Lenora streets.

 

Lori Nikfard's family owns the printing business next door to the project and said she is already fed up with crime she blames on residents from Plymouth's other buildings.

 

“We are already feeling the impact of their clients coming out onto the streets and unfortunately, they’re not all acting in a behavior that we appreciate,” said Nikfard, who sent flyers to neighbors.

 

If Nikfard sent out the flyers to rile up residents, it clearly worked, as those running the meeting struggled to keep control.

 

Kathy Roseth with Plymouth Housing Group said the residents of the new housing project will be different.

 

“This is not our typical homeless project, which we do serve, but it’s a project that serves people who are becoming good citizens,” said Roseth.

 

While the neighbors can't stop the project, they can influence it.   There is still one more design meeting before the project begins.