The Seattle Office of Housing is taking steps to address the issue of affordable housing and prevent displacement in the Rainier Valley neighborhood. They are investing $7.5 million in an affordable housing ownership initiative that will result in the construction of 72 new housing units. These units will be available for purchase by individuals or families looking for affordable homeownership opportunities.
The funding will support four different housing projects, all of which are located on land that Sound Transit gifted to the city in 2021. Here are the details of the planned properties:
7908 Martin Luther King Jr. Way S: This project is a collaboration between the developer Homestead Community Land Trust and the Rainier Beach Action Coalition. It will consist of eight three-bedroom units, with an estimated completion date in 2025.
6740 Martin Luther King Jr. Way S: African Community Housing & Development (ACHD) and Habitat for Humanity Seattle-King & Kittitas Counties (Habitat SKC) are partnering for this project. It will include ten one-bedroom units and 20 two-bedroom units, with an estimated completion date in 2026.
3601 Martin Luther King Jr. Way S: ACHD and Habitat SKC are also collaborating on this project, which will have nine one-bedroom units and 22 two-bedroom units. It is expected to be completed in 2026.
4865 Martin Luther King Jr. Way S: Another project by ACHD and Habitat SKC, this one will feature three four-bedroom units and is estimated to be completed in 2026.
This initiative is part of the Rainier Valley Affordable Homeownership Initiative, which aims to develop a total of 100 homeownership units across ten sites provided by Sound Transit. The overarching goal is to create homeownership opportunities for both current and displaced residents of the Rainier Valley neighborhood.
Maiko Winkler-Chin, the director of Seattle’s Office of Housing, expressed enthusiasm for this initiative and its potential to address affordable housing challenges in the community. The selection process for these projects was carried out with input from various organizations, and the efforts of all involved parties in submitting innovative proposals were commended.
In a separate news release, ACHD and Habitat SKC highlighted the diversity of Rainier Valley, noting that it is one of the most diverse neighborhoods in the Pacific Northwest. The Black Home Initiative (BHI) network also commended the efforts of Sound Transit, the City of Seattle Office of Housing, and partners like African Community Housing and Development and Habitat for Humanity SKKC for their work in addressing affordable housing needs and equity issues in the region.