Resource Roundup: February 2nd 2022
Pioneer Square Business Stakeholders-

The Alliance for Pioneer Square team is working diligently to keep the Pioneer Square community informed regarding new resources and opportunities available to them. This roundup is part of a series of weekly messages capturing new resources and opportunities. Find each weekly email to date on our website.

*Please see this roundup's new resources and opportunities highlighted in RED*

What's Happening

  • *NEW* On January 27, 2022, Governor Inslee signed House Bills 1732 and 1733 that temporarily delay implementation of the Washington Cares Act, the State’s payroll tax on Washington workers which supports Washington residents with the costs of long-term care. The new bills came after legislative leaders announced an intention to delay premium collections for the Washington Cares Fund in December 2021 and to clarify employer obligations under the act. Learn more about this announcement here.

  • *NEW* In an effort to increase access to at-home rapid tests across the state, the Washington State Department of Health (DOH) is launching a statewide portal that will allow COVID-19 tests to ship directly to households. Washington state residents are now able to visit the new portal to order rapid-antigen COVID tests online delivered at no cost.

Residents can order up to 5 free tests for a household however, supply will be limited at first and adjusted as supply into the state increases. You can still get COVID-19 tests through any of the following options:
  • Order free at-home COVID-19 tests through the Federal program
  • Purchase an at-home test at local retailers and pharmacies.
  • If you have health insurance, most insurers will now directly cover or pay you back for up to 8 at-⁠home tests per month, for each person on your plan.
  • Find a test at a testing location near you.
Worker and Business Resources

  • *NEW* The Seattle Department of Construction and Inspections (SDCI) is now offering dedicated permit services for future tenants of downtown vacant storefronts and small businesses citywide. The goal of this new service is to provide early coaching to tenants in advance of signing a lease, to minimize costly requirements, and set businesses up for success by reducing the time it takes to obtain a permit.

The services provided to qualifying permit applicants include:
  • Research and early permit coaching
  • Facilitator will research property for most current permit information
  • Develop a permit strategy for most streamlined permitting options
  • Seek to minimize costly requirements that could add to construction costs or complexity of permit type
  • Review permit application material for completeness prior to submittal
  • Expedited permitting services
  • Prioritized appointment for your permit application
  • Reduced timeline for completing plan review (Be aware that other departments and reviews outside of SDCI might still be required and have different timelines)
  • Single point of contact for permit applicant

Please reach out to Peter Fuerbringer for more information on obtaining a permit for a vacant storefront downtown.

  • The Seattle Office of Arts & Culture is now accepting applications for the 2023 CityArtist program. The CityArtist supports Seattle-based individual artists/curators in the research, development, and presentation of their work. The 2023 application is open to dancers/choreographers, musicians/composers or theater makers (including playwriters).

Artists who practice traditional/ethnic and multi-disciplinary art forms may also apply. See guidelines for details. Apply here by 5pm (PT) on April 27th, 2022. Join the Seattle Office of Arts & Culture for the following online program overview workshops:  

For questions or inquires, please contact Project Manager, Irene Gómez.

  • The Merchant Maverick Opportunity Grant Program for AAPI-Owned Restaurants opened on January 3, 2022. Its sole purpose is to extend financial opportunities to business owners who otherwise have trouble accessing traditional financing. This grant program will award 10, $10,000 grants to Asian and Pacific Islanders who are American citizens and own a restaurant or foodservice business. The program only accepts 5,000 applications total, and small businesses can click here for more information.
Partner Efforts

The West Seattle and Ballard Link Extensions project is now seeking public review and comment on the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). Explore the online open house to learn more about the project, read the Draft EIS document and take a tour of potential station alternatives across the entire project corridor, for both the West Seattle and the Ballard Link Extensions.

Comments must be received by April 28th. Your feedback will be shared with the Sound Transit Board of Directors before they confirm or modify the preferred alternative. The Board will select the project to be built after the Final EIS is published, which is expected in 2023.

In addition to learning about and commenting on the Draft EIS through the online open house, there will be multiple opportunities to connect with project staff, ask questions, and share your input. Click here for online public meetings, in-person drop-in events and more opportunities to get involved.

  • *NEW* Each year, Historic Seattle hosts a HeartBomb to raise awareness about threatened & beloved historic places around our city. This year, instead of focusing on a single site, the HeartBomb campaign will advance seismic retrofit policy in Seattle. This public safety & preservation issue impacts Pioneer Square greatly. In December, the Seattle City Council passed a resolution to develop a program that will create retrofit policy.

The 2022 HeartBomb aims to draw attention to this public safety/historic preservation issue and encourage the Mayor and City Council to continue their work to address it. Starting February 1, create digital or physical Valentines to your favorite unreinforced masonry buildings (URMs). How to make/share your HeartBomb:
  • Option 1: Digital Participation
  • Step 1: Create a Valentine for your favorite unreinforced masonry building.
  • Step 2: Take a photo with your Valentine at the property (no trespassing) or of you with the Valentine at a place of your choosing.
  • Step 3: Post your photo on Facebook or Instagram & tag @HistoricSeattle by February 13. Use #HeartBombSea #RetrofitASAP
Don’t want to craft? Create a digital Valentine using design software & then follow step 3!

  • Option 2: Craft & Send
  • Step 1: Create a Valentine for your favorite unreinforced masonry building.
  • Step 2: Mail your Valentine to Historic Seattle (1117 Minor Ave, Seattle, WA 98101) by February 7.

Visit Historic Seattle's website to learn more below.
Other Neighborhood Updates

  • *NEW* It is important for the Alliance to know your vision for Pioneer Square, so we want to hear from you. In 2020, owing to drastic changes in our neighborhood landscape as a result of the pandemic and to guide our work over the next 18 months, we created the COVID-19 Pandemic Response PlanThe Alliance for Pioneer Square’s COVID-19 Pandemic Response Plan tells the story of what we have done, what we are doing, and what we planned to do in the period immediately following the immediate COVID-19 pandemic disruptions.

Two years into the pandemic, we again want to engage community members on our recovery efforts to date and, to learn and gather feedback as we move forward into recovery. You’re invited to attend an online and in person open house to share feedback on the COVID-19 Pandemic Response Plan, provide inspiration for additional neighborhood improvements, and connect with neighbors.

The Alliance will host an in person open house on March 10, 2022 from 9-10:30a and 3-4:30p at Cherry Street Coffee House to hear from community members. No registration is required for the in-person open house- just drop in. Please note, attendees will be required to show proof of full COVID-19 vaccination status or a negative PCR or rapid COVID-19 test within 72 hours to gain entry. Face masks will be required at all times during the event.

This process is supported in part by Historic South Downtown. Click here to learn more.

  • Gallery 110 invites Black, Indigenous and other Artists of Color to apply to become members of their Pioneer Square Artist Collective. Gallery 110 will award up to seven fully funded two-year memberships this year. In addition to a fully funded membership, finalists will receive gallery representation and mentoring as a professional fine artist, a website artist page, a solo exhibition within 24 months, and the opportunity to participate in gallery decision making and operations as a full member-owner.

Click here for more information or to submit your application. Applications close on February 28, 2022 For any additional information or questions, contact Shayley Timm.
Additional Resources

  • The Pioneer Square Business Owners & Managers Facebook group is an opportunity for business owners and retailers to participate in an online forum and share resources, support, and stories. We invite you to join group and connect with other neighborhood businesses. Click here to join the Pioneer Square Business Owners and Managers Facebook page.

  • The Alliance is coordinating with the Butler Garage on 114 James Street, to provide free parking on Saturdays throughout the year. Park for free every Saturday with a dated proof of purchase from a Pioneer Square business. Free parking is available from 11am to 8pm each Saturday in 2022.

  • Driving to Pioneer Square? Check out mobile-friendly for parking locations throughout the neighborhood. 

Please let us know how we might best support you. Feel free to contact any of us with comments, questions, suggestions, or concerns.

The Alliance Team