Environmental Works News November 2017

Happy winter from Environmental Works! Please join us in kicking off the season by celebrating #GivingTuesday, a global day of giving, on November 28, when we’ll welcome visitors to Fire Station 7’s patio for hot cider, food drive donations, and our #UNSelfie booth.

We also have updates to share on several exciting EW projects at Seattle’s Magnuson Park.  Need some fresh air?  Take a winter walk at Magnuson Park to check out these inspiring facilities, whose programs are sure to invigorate you.

#GivingTuesday with EW: Cider, Food Drive, #UNSelfies

Since 2012, #GivingTuesday has provided a generosity-themed counterpoint to Black Friday’s and Cyber Monday’s focus on consuming.  Throughout the world, thousands of nonprofits rely on Giving Tuesday to raise money and enthusiasm for their causes.  In 2016, Giving Tuesday generated $177 million in online donations to nonprofits in 85 countries, with an average gift size of $107.69.

Here are just a few of the great ways to celebrate Giving Tuesday:

  • Stop by EW’s Giving Tuesday celebration on November 28 from 11:30 to 1!  We’ll be outside Fire Station 7 with hot cider, and an #UNSelfie photo booth where you can inspire and be inspired by others’ acts of generosity.  We’ll also be accepting nonperishable donations for our Capitol Hill neighbors, the Jewish Family Service Food Bank.
  • Consider a donation to EW’s Community Design Fund, to support inclusive, collaborative design processes for communities in need.  One project your donation will support is a community design workshop with preschool children from the Denise Louie Education Center.  Together we will develop a creative design for shades to cover vast skylights in their new preschool at Sand Point’s Building 9.  We look forward to carrying out this project with your support, and to sharing the children’s design with you.
  • Donate money, goods, or time to causes you care about.  Or, search #GivingTuesday for ideas.

A Trio of EW Projects at Sand Point’s Rejuvenated Former Naval Station

You may just know Seattle’s Sand Point Peninsula as home of beautiful 350-acre Warren G. Magnuson Park.  However, it has served dozens of other uses over the past few centuries, from its exploration by the Salish Sea’s original inhabitants, to logging and homesteading in the 19th century, to its use as a Naval Air Station (which hosted the launch of the first round-the-world flight in 1924) and then as Naval Station Puget Sound through much of the 20th century.

After the Naval Station closed in the late 1990s, 15 acres was transferred to anti-poverty nonprofit Solid Ground, which reinvigorated several former military housing buildings to serve various affordable housing needs.  Since 1999, this historic Sand Point Campus has provided housing and supportive services to thousands of individuals and families.

Over the past two decades, Environmental Works has collaborated on several projects at Sand Point.  We are excited to share with you the details of three current EW projects there.

Denise Louie Education Center: On-Site Early Learning Center for Families at Sand Point

EW’s collaborations with Denise Louie Education Center began twenty years ago, and include the re-use and expansion of an old corner store into a light-filled multicultural early learning facility on Beacon Hill.  Sand Point Building 9’s Center Building will be our largest-scale collaboration yet with Denise Louie, with enough space to serve up to 97 children including six classrooms for children from birth to age five, an outdoor play area, a gross motor room for rainy days, a socialization room for Early Head Start, and offices.

Building 9, a vast, historic colonial revival building that formerly housed barracks for Navy sailors, spans 224,000 square feet.  The Building 9 redevelopment by Mercy Housing Northwest will include 148 units of affordable family housing and a Neighborcare Health Clinic, in addition to the Denise Louie early learning center, transforming an unmaintained and vandalized vacant building into a thriving community asset.

EW Project Lead Sally Knodell notes: “Denise Louie’s delivery of high quality multicultural early learning and family support services to low-income and immigrant children is exceptional. We are thrilled to be involved with this project and amazing team.”  In addition to Mercy Housing, Building 9 project partners include Neighborcare Health, Miller Hayashi and Tonkin Architecture.  Construction began in late September of this year, and will be completed during the first quarter of 2019.

Sand Point Group Homes: Transitional Housing and Support for Young People

Built in 1939, the elegant colonial revival Buildings 330, 331, and 332 formerly housed married commissioned officers who were expected to entertain frequently.  These buildings’ spaciousness and solidity have simplified their conversion to group homes, which are now operated by YouthCare and Friends of Youth.  Residents are staying in place during EW’s renovations, which are expected to be completed by early 2018.  Partnering on this project are development consultant Centerra LLC and Good News Group Construction.

Friends of Youth’s New Ground Home program in Building 330 houses up to six young women who are pregnant or parenting their first child up to age 3, and provides wraparound education, employment, and life skills assistance to promote healthy relationships and economic self-sufficiency.  EW’s renovations are adding a study space for mothers pursuing their GEDs or other educational opportunities, and opening up common spaces for residents.  New energy-efficient windows in the style of the original windows will be installed to maintain the building’s historic character; as well as new easy-to-operate insulating blinds, to maximize natural light and increase comfort.  The buildings are being further rejuvenated with new roofing and exterior painting.

YouthCare’s Pathways and Passages programs in Buildings 331 and 332 provide transitional housing to young people pursuing education or work opportunities.  EW’s remodel is increasing both program capacity and resident privacy: shared bedrooms are being divided to create private bedrooms, and three new bedrooms are also being added.  Thanks to the homes’ spacious original footprint, the divided bedrooms will retain a roomy feel.  New energy-efficient windows and roofing are also being installed in these group homes, along with a new restroom and office space. Lower utility bills will enable both YouthCare and Friends of Youth to focus their limited funds on helping young people.

Sand Point Family Housing and Santos Place Move Individuals and Families Out of Homelessness

These multi-family buildings owned by Solid Ground and managed by Mercy Housing date from the 1940s, and originally housed bachelor and junior naval officers.  Santos Place currently provides 42 studio units for individuals transitioning out of homelessness, while Sand Point Family Housing offers 27 mostly 2- and 3-bedroom affordable housing units to families.

EW’s rehabilitation project at Santos Place includes creation of eight new studio apartments in currently underutilized space; and painting, flooring, and kitchen and bathroom updates for existing units.  The Sand Point Family Housing project entails primarily exterior updates (new windows, roofing, and painting), along with some kitchen and bathroom updates and corridor and staircase improvements.  Project partners Ally Community Development LLC and Buchanan General Contracting are working with EW to ensure that no residents are displaced during these phased projects, which are expected to be completed by the end of 2017.

EW Project Lead Roger Tucker sums up our collective enthusiasm regarding these projects: “It is truly exciting to be working on this historic campus, which integrates affordable housing with so many wonderful services: child care, community gardens, and park facilities like Kite Hill and a swimming beach.  It’s a great place to live!”

In Case You Missed It

EW at Housing WA, Statewide Conference on Affordable Housing

EW Staff Complete Pomegranate Training on Engaging Community in Creative Design Processes

Kirkland Shelter Project with CCSWW and The Sophia Way In The News