23rd and Union development update: Notes on Africatown Plaza

As developers snag every available piece of land in the booming real estate market of Central Seattle, African American community members demand a seat at the table when it comes to who fills the future Africatown portion of Midtown development at 23rd and Union. How do you address the concerns of a diverse community while understanding the history of the land the development is being built on? By meeting, bringing those voices together, and giving them a chance to express their concerns and desires for positive change.

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Plan’s Rise for Seattle Africatown Plaza


Garrett, center, with Forterra’s Michelle Connor and Chris Persons of Capitol Hill Housing (Image: Africatown Plaza)

The newly formed Africatown Community Land Trust entered an agreement with Capitol Hill Housing and Lake Union Partners, the Seattle development company that bought the Midtown Center block in May.

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Exposing and Defeating the Fascist Creep

In light of the fact that Donald Trump is president, and that his consigliere Steve Bannon has publicly expressed a favorable view of the Italian fascist and SS enthusiast Julius Evola; considering the possibility that the neofascist Marine Le Pen’s Front National could win the 2017 elections in France; and given the explosive violence targeting Muslims, Jews and people of color in the US since Trump’s election, the time is certainly right to read and widely discuss Alexander Reid Ross’s new book, Against the Fascist Creep (AK Press, 2017).

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MLK SEATTLE 2017

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From: Capitol Hill Seattle

Official crowd estimates for events like the annual Seattle MLK Day march are hard to come by but organizers said Monday the 2017 gathering might have been the largest in the 35-year history of the event.

You could also measure the crowd by the CHS video — four and a half minutes to walk from the start of the procession to the SPD contingent bringing up the rear. The marchers passed from Garfield High School to E Union then E Madison and onto the Federal Building downtown.

You can learn more about the history of the event and the day of workshops at Garfield High School that accompany it at mlkseattle.org

Here’s how Seattle became so segregated

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A new look at New Deal ‘redlining’ maps offers insight into subtle racism’s not-so-subtle predecessor

The “redlining” maps minted during the New Deal were a roadmap for investment in America’s cities. Seattle was no exception in warning bankers off extending loans to home buyers in non-white neighborhoods. Here’s a look some of the more racist descriptions offered about Seattle’s neighborhoods back in 1936. They’re rated “A” to “D,” with “A” being best.

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An albino baby and his cousin

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Kinshasa, Congo. An albino baby and his cousin.
By WorldLifestyle in Relationships

The *other* lawsuit at 23rd and Union: Activist sues property owners, City Hall for ‘strong racial hostility’

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Posted on Friday, April 1, 2016 – 12:04 pm by jseattle

The battle to sell off the Midtown Center property at 23rd and Union is keeping the courts busy. CHS broke the news this week on the family legal fight holding up a $23.5 million deal to sell the property to a California-based apartment developer.

Now we have learned of another legal fight stemming from the issues at Midtown that might have more immediate ramifications for the block while setting up a last stand of sorts for a long time part of the activist community around Africatown.

Omari Tahir-Garrett is suing everyone from the family partnership behind Midtown Center to Kshama Sawant and Seattle City Light in a federal civil rights lawsuit brought after utilities were cut off the property where his UMOJA P.E.A.C.E Center is located at 24th and E Spring.

In his suit, Tahir-Garrett alleges that the long list of defendants acted on “strong racial hostility” and violated his first amendment rights because of “Black community activism” —

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