Downtown Seattle Association’s “State of Downtown” draws large crowd

Mar 18, 2024
Written by WR Communications

On March 7, more than 1,000 people gathered in the new Seattle Convention Center to hear about the State of Downtown from numerous community leaders.
Jon Scholes, President & CEO of the Downtown Seattle Association, which organized the event, gave an overview of his organization’s annual Report on downtown. The Report includes a report card that examines several measures of economy health and vitality for downtown.
On the plus side, the report card found continued growth in the number of people living downtown (74% growth since 2010 to 106,116) and upward movement on the number of downtown jobs as they slowly recover from the steep Covid decline. The number of retail jobs painted a less favorable picture as 2023 figures reveal a drop below Covid-era numbers.
Axios Seattle took a look at some of the other information contained in the DSA Report.
Seattle City Council President Sara Nelson also addressed the event, giving her perspective on the priorities of the newly-elected Council. President Nelson emphasized that the Council and its staff are now back in their offices, hoping the set an example for the city and county governments.
As editorial board member, Alex Fryer, noted in The Seattle Times, nonessential City employees are only required to work in the office two days a week. King County has no uniform back-to-office policy and enough county employees are working from home that the County closed its Administration Building in 2021. Fryer made it clear that downtown activation requires a full-time return to office by the 12,000 employees who work for the City and County.
 Other speakers included Joy Shigaki (Friends of Waterfront Seattle), Elliott Bay Connections, and a public safety panel discussion with City Attorney Ann Davison, Police Chief Adrian Diaz, Community Assisted Response and Engagement (CARE) Chief Amy Smith and moderated by KING5-TV’s Chris Daniels.


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