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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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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Nickelsville campers relocate to UMOJA Center property in the CD

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Nickelsville campers relocate to UMOJA Center property in the CD
Posted on Friday, March 18, 2016 – 1:29 pm by Bryan Cohen

The fallout from last week’s eviction of the Nickelsville camp near the intersection of Seattle’s two interstates has reached the Central District. Around 20 former Nickelsville campers have temporarily relocated to the UMOJA P.E.A.C.E Center property at 23rd and E Spring. A dozen sleeping tents and a kitchen tent went up on the property earlier this week.

The now displaced residents of the sanctioned tent and tiny house encampment on Dearborn Ave. were evicted by property owners Coho Real Estate after the campers voted to disassociate from the Nickelsville organization and run the camp themselves, citing unfair treatment by the Nickelsville leadership. Coho had partnered with the Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd to sponsor the site and lawfully host it on its property.

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Creating Africatown In Seattle’s Central District

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Bill Radke speaks with Wyking Garrett about his vision to create an Africatown — akin to a Chinatown or International District — in Seattle. Garrett sees Africatown as a way to expand and preserve the African-American identity of Seattle’s Central District.

LISTEN TO AFRICATOWN COMMUNITY LEADER WYKING GARRETT

Police: Men claiming explosives, sniper at former school arrested

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SEATTLE — Four people suspected of being part of a group claiming to have explosives and a sniper inside the old Horace Mann school building were arrested Tuesday, ending a weeks-long standoff between the group and the Seattle School District, according to the Seattle Police Department.

The District closed the school building on East Cherry Street years ago. In recent months, 18 groups moved into the school without permission and started using it for community classes and other purposes as the Africatown Center for Education and Innovation.

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