SEATTLE — The King County Equity Now Coalition announced on July 3 that Shelter Holdings agreed to halt its development of the former Keiro site—nearly a full block, situated squarely in the Central Area.
After immense public pushback from the Black community for Shelter Holdings’ role in gentrification and the Central Area’s displacement, Shelter Holdings agreed to transfer the property to the Black community.
Shelter Holdings planned initially to convert the former elderly care center into largely market-rate housing, but recently stated it recognizes and “respect[s] the desire for a use of the property that provides greater benefit than [Shelter’s] previous proposal…”
Supporters call the move a historic win for the Central Area’s Black community, “for a truly equitable development that honors Keiro site’s legacy as a cultural institution, pays homage to the long history of Black and AAPI solidarity work in Seattle, and paves way for future cross-community building.”
Central District (CD) resident Teatmaei Wokoma said, “The last month, the national uproar over the Capitol Hill Organized Protest illustrated the importance of land, space, agency, and ultimately ownership. Halting a full block of predatory development in the rapidly-gentrifying Central District is beyond monumental—it’s a watershed moment that signals the Black community will not idly be forced out of the CD.”