Northwest Center, the City of Seattle, the National Development Council and King County government celebrated collaborative efforts on Wednesday that resulted in a new childcare facility located inside the county’s Chinook office building in downtown Seattle.
Northwest Center, the City of Seattle, the National Development Council and King County government celebrated collaborative efforts on Wednesday that resulted in a new childcare facility located inside the county's Chinook office building in downtown Seattle. Northwest Center provides Birth-to-Three Early Intervention Services for children with developmental delays, and was selected by King County as the childcare facility provider for their Chinook Building space after a competitive Request for Proposal process in 2009/10.
"We were so pleased to partner with Northwest Center, the City of Seattle, and the National Development Council to create a space for this valuable public service to hardworking parents and families," said King County Executive Dow Constantine. "Through this multi-party public-private partnership, we are able to provide this valuable service to the community, and at no additional cost to the taxpayer."
Located at the corner of 5th Avenue and Terrace Street, the new childcare facility has five classrooms, a rooftop playground, and an indoor "motor room" for children to play. The location will accommodate 60 children aged from infant through pre-kindergarten, and 20 percent of the spaces are reserved for children whose families earn below 80 percent of the greater Seattle area median income. Children with developmental delays and disabilities will be given priority.
"This early learning facility represents the culmination of a successful collaboration between the city, the county and Northwest Center," said President and CEO of Northwest Center, Tom Everill. "The result of our efforts is a warm, inclusive space that welcomes kids of all abilities and income levels in the heart of downtown."
The majority of the tenant improvements were paid for by the city of Seattle's Child Care Bonus Program. "20 percent of the children to be served in this center will come from low- and moderate-income working families," said Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn. "This reflects the values we heard from the community during the Youth and Families Initiative. A commitment to learning and success in life starts early and is critical for supporting healthy development. It is my hope that this new center will serve as an important and safe place for children in Seattle."
Wright Runstad & Company developed the 292,171 square foot Chinook building, including the childcare center.
The National Development Council facilitated tenant improvements and the lease process for the building. "The National Development Council has worked on numerous economic and community development projects with King County and the City of Seattle for many decades. As an organization focused on generating investment in underserved communities, NDC is pleased to contribute our efforts to expanding childcare facilities for Seattle and King County families," said John Finke, senior regional director with NDC.
Northwest Center has provided services to support the rights and independence of people with developmental disabilities for 45 years. From early childhood therapy and education to adult job training and placement, Northwest Center promotes the building of a community where people of all abilities can fully participate. The center is expected to be licensed and operating early this fall.