Common Ground (Seattle)

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For the New York City-based social service organization, see Common Ground (NYC).
Common Ground
Founded 1980
Founder Steve Clagett
Type affordable housing developer
Location
  • 419 Occidental Ave S # 201, Seattle, WA 98104-2886
Area served Washington State and surrounding areas
Slogan Affordable Housing Solutions
Mission "...to create and preserve housing affordable to people with low incomes and special needs in Washington State and surrounding communities."
Website http://commongroundwa.org/

Common Ground is a nonprofit affordable housing developer in Seattle, Washington. Its primary goal is creating and preserving high-quality permanent and transitional housing for the homeless; it now also includes nonprofit facilities other than housing, such as community centers and medical buildings. The core of the organization are housing development specialists, who work together with existing nonprofit social service agencies, government agencies and housing authorities.

History[edit]

In 1980, county planner Steve Clagett and other housing activists founded Common Ground in response to a growing housing crisis in the downtown core.[1] The organization began helping local social service agencies and churches preserve and transform historic buildings into affordable housing, and identified sites and secured funding for new affordable housing units. The group helped preserve many downtown Seattle landmarks, including the Olive Tower, the St. Regis Hotel and the Josephinum.[2][3]

The organization does not own or manage these facilities. Instead, like market-rate real estate developers, it puts together land deals, arranges financing and supervises construction for social service agencies and housing authorities. Clients include the Metro YMCA, Pioneer Human Services, Solid Ground[4] and Downtown Emergency Service Center.

In the late 80s, they started to work with churches to provide housing for individuals with mental illness, establishing partnerships between mental health agencies and area churches. The churches rented houses to be used as group homes and the agency staff provided services and oversight. The experience led the organization into a new area of focus: special-needs housing.

Today, Common Ground has expanded throughout the state of Washington, working with more than 300 community-based organizations to develop more than 6,200 units of housing for people with low-income or special needs.

Residences Built in 2011[edit]

As of August 2011 Common Ground has developed 5 buildings with 117 units.

Client Sponsor Building Location Number of Units
Transitional Resources Avalon Place West Seattle 16
YWCA of Seattle, King County, Snohomish County Passage Point Maple Valley 46
Solid Ground Brettler Family Place Seattle 51
Valley Cities Counseling and Consultation Auburn Four-Plex Auburn 4

See also[edit]

References[edit]

Notes

External links[edit]