WEDNESDAY, December 7
Room L 280 – Boards & Commissions
600 4th Avenue, Floor L2.
The Landmarks Hearing Board will be deciding the fate of Belltown’s beloved Mama’s building on Wednesday, December 7th (see Seattle Times). This will be the first of possibly two hearings the City will hold on whether the building meets the historic landmarking criteria.
We need your support because even though we feel the building easily meets the Landmark designation criteria, we KNOW that the owners of the building have hired consultants and attorneys to argue that the building is “nothing special,” as they have called other historic buildings in Belltown.
So we need to show that the community loves this building and supports this nomination.
So if you can, PLEASE ATTEND THE MEETING on December 7th. You don’t have to speak at all. Just being there will help. But people who wish to speak will have one minute to comment.
IF YOU DO PLAN TO COMMENT — PLEASE FOCUS the LANDMARK CRITERIA (see the letter guide here)!!!
The board does not like off-topic comments (e.g., the city is changing! I don’t like new buildings!)….so PLEASE FOCUS ON THE BUILDING AND CRITERIA.
What Happens Next????
This first meeting is like a playoff game. The Board will decide to either “approve” the nomination to move forward to a second designation meeting. Or it may decide right then and there to not move forward, in which case, the building’s 90+ year season would be over — and it would very likely be torn down within a year.
If the nomination is approved, the Board will set another meeting in about a month to hold a formal vote on whether to approve or deny the designation. This will be the Superbowl.
But to get to the Superbowl, we need to win this first playoff game, and that is why we are asking for your help to show that the community supports this nomination.
Note that even if the building is landmarked, the property will still likely be developed.
But if it is designated, the brick facade would likely stay — OR, if the facade cannot be retained due to condition and/or costs — the landmark designation may require that the developer mitigate for the loss (e.g. help the community in its efforts to retain 2nd Ave history, character and culture).
The Domino Factor
What’s more important — if the Mama’s buidling is not designated a landmark, then we fear that the owners of the Landmark Wayne Apartments (Roco’s and Lava, next door to the Mama’s building) will have an easier time getting a pass to tear down that building — and with that goes block.
So in some ways, our beautiful line of buildings on 2nd Ave are like dominoes. When one goes, the rest may follow soon after.
That is why we fight, using our strongest and most valuable assets — the facts, the law and — our strongest and most valuable asset of all — the awesome community that is 2nd Avenue!!!