The U District is a unique, thriving neighborhood. In addition to the hustle and bustle of the Ave, over 45,000 students attend the University of Washington and 38,000 people work on campus and in local businesses. The district is home to more than 14,200 residents, many of whom are students. The U District neighborhood is known for its year-round farmers market and annual Street Fair, and features many agencies and churches that serve a diversity of social needs.
The U District is also changing. Several new developments are under construction or planned, and there are new investments in University properties as well as new parks and open spaces. Importantly, construction of the light rail station has begun at NE 43rd Street and Brooklyn Avenue NE, and is expected to be in operation by 2021. Growth in population, households, families, and owner-occupancy are expected to exceed the state and national averages over the next five years. A key component of the University District Partnership is to make the area more attractive to entrepreneurs, employers, and residents who are engaged in innovative and enterprises that take advantage of the University’s presence and will diversify and stimulate the neighborhood’s economic base.
In late 2011 the first seeds of the U District Partnership were sowed with the founding of the U District Livability Partnership (UDLP). The partnership was forged through a four year period of time that saw unprecedented levels of community engagement and collaboration between the City, the UW, Sound Transit, Business Owners, Property Owners, and Residents of the District. Together we crafted a Strategic Plan guided by a Steering Committee. Their efforts produced this long term, sustainable organization that provides the community with the leadership capacity required to realize their own goals.